一位讀者寫信來問,"I have married for 6 years. (我已經結婚六年了),這句話有文法上的錯誤嗎?

答案是,有錯。這個問題問得好,我們有機會認識一種英語錯誤的類型。

英文最複雜的是動詞,幾乎是動詞搞定,就搞一切!上周說過這句話,本周要再強調一次。解釋這類錯誤,先來造幾個句子:

1. 我已經進這加公司三年了。
2. 我可以借這本書借一周嗎?
3. 會議開始20一會兒了。

如果你的答案是,那就錯了:
1. I have joined the company for three years.(X)
2. May I borrow the book for a week? (X)
3. The meeting has started for a while. (X)

英文動詞裡有一類叫做「瞬間」動詞,這類動作,一旦發生就完成,不會持續。像結婚(marry)、加入(join)、開始(begin/start)、到達(arrive)、借(borrow)、買(buy)、死(die)都是。

我三年前加入這家公司,Join這個字一旦加入就加入,不可能三年時間不斷地加入。所以說:

  • I joined the company three years ago.(O)或呈現一種狀態:
  • I have been with the company for three years.(O)

Borrow也一樣,借在某一時間點就完成,不可能整周一直都有借的這個動作。借一整星期,用keep。

  • May I keep the book for a week?

Start這個也是,一旦開始這個動作就完成了,改成:

  • The meeting has been on for a while.

一個動詞是瞬間還是延續,很容易判斷。例如,工作(work)、學習(learn)、閱讀(read).....很明顯都是延續性的動作。先前讀者提問那一句,應該怎麼說才對呢?只差一字:

  • I have been married for 6 years. (O) married 從原來have married變成形容詞been married。講的是處在結婚狀態已經六年。

現在來測一測是不是真懂了,這些句子應該怎麼說才對,

1. He has died for three years。(X) 他死了三年了。
2. He has come here for five days。(X) 他來這兒五天了。
3. She will fill in for me while I leave. (X) 我請假期間,她會代理我的職務。

看出來怎麼說才對了嗎?
1. He has been dead for three years.He died three years ago. (O)
2. He has been here for five days.He came here five days ago。(O)
3. She will fill in for me while I am away. (O)

按這裏,改變英文,就改變人生

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