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Unit 6. Past Сontinuous (I was doing)
(прошедшее продолженное время)

Study this example situation:
 
Unit 6. Past Continuos (I was doing) Yesterday Karen and Jim played tennis.
They began at 10 o'clock and finished at 11.30.
So, at 10.30 they were playing tennis.
 
They were playing = "they were in the middle of playing". They had not finished playing.
Was/ were -ing is the Past Continuous:
 
I/ he/ she/ it
we/ you/ they
was
were
playing
doing
working

We use the Past Continuous to say that somebody was in the middle of doing something at a certain time. The action or situation had already started before this time but had not finished:
 
Unit 6. Past Continuos (I was doing) Compare the Past Continuous (I was doing) and Past Simple (I did):
 
Past Continuous (in the middle of an action)
  • I was walking home when I met Dave.
    (= in the middle of walking home).
  • Ann was watching television when the phone rang.
Past Simple (complete action)
  • I walked home after the party last night.
    (= all the way, completely).
  • Ann watched television a lot when she was ill last year.

We often use the Past Simple and the Past Continuous together to say that something happened in the middle of something else: But we use the Past Simple to say that one thing happened after another: Compare:
 
When Karen arrived, we were having dinner.
(= We had already started dinner before karen arrived.)
When Karen arrived, we had dinner.
(= First Karen arrived and then we had dinner.)

There are some verbs (for example, know/ want/ believe) that are not normally used in the continuous (see Unit 4. Present Continuous and Present Simple (2) I am doing and I do).
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