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Past perfect exercise

Language in context

Over the last twenty years, the average size of households has fallen dramatically. The number of one person households has grown, due largely to the ageing of the population, as has the number of one parent families. Couples having smaller families have also contributed to the fall in household size.

In 1976, 60% of families were couples with children. By 1996, this had fallen to 51%. Part of this change can be attributed to the increase in one parent families with dependent children, but most of the change is due to the increase in the proportion of couple only families. People are now having children later in life, and are living longer. Therefore, they are spending more time living in couple-only families, both before they have families and after their children have left home.

However, children are leaving home later. In 1981, 34% of children aged 20-24 lived with their parents. By 1991, this had increased to 40%. This increase has, to some extent, countered the fall in the couples with non-dependent children only.

(Source: ABS Yearbook Australia 1997, Number 79 p. 81)

There are two past perfect verbs in the 'Language in context' passage above.

    Type these verbs into the first two boxes below. Check your answers as you go.

  1. First past perfect verb:
  2. Second past perfect verb:
  3. Identify and type in the past perfect verb in each sentence below. These examples are not from the 'Language in context' passage.

  4. It was announced that he had resigned from his position at the bank for personal reasons.
  5. Several senior employees had left the company by the time the new manager arrived.
  6. Until the new software was purchased, the staff had struggled to keep the accounts records up to date.
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