Past Perfect continuous Tense


Perfect Continuous Tense - Duration with specified time.
Time has to be mentioned in this tense because this tense tells the starting point of time of work and duration of work until it is/was/will being continued.

  Uses of past Perfect Continuous Tense

USE 1: Duration of an action before something else/another action in past.


This tense is used to show that an action started in the past and continued till another action/time in past.

She had been sleeping for three hours before her mother arrived.

She had been sleeping - an action started in the past
for three hours - duration of time
Before her mother arrived - another action.

USE 2: Cause and Effect/ Action and its reaction

This tense is the best way to express cause and efect in past.

Saima got first position in final examination because she had been hardworking for six months.

Because She had been hardworking - Cause / Action
for six months - duration of an action
Saima got first position - Effect / reaction

  Structure of Past Perfect Continuous Tense

Singular subject I, He, She, It, Any Name and Plural Subject: We, They



Nature of Sentence Structure of tense with example.
Positive S + Had been + verb(ing) + O.
Negative S + Had + Not + been + verb(ing) + O.
Interogative Had + S + been + verb(ing) + O.
Interogative negative Had + S + Not + been + verb(ing) + O.