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  #1 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 9th, 2007, 12:30 pm
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Join Date: Jan 6th, 2006
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nunzia is on a distinguished road
Default Present Cont. or Simple Present

Could you tell me which is correct:

Ann's friends are living in Paris. or Ann's friends live in Paris.

I think it should be Ann's friends live in Paris because it is a fact but someone told me it should be Ann's friends are living in Paris. If it's the second one, I think we should put a time like now or at the moment.

Thank you.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 9th, 2007, 01:40 pm
Sue
 
Join Date: Oct 8th, 2006
Location: Milan
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Default Re: Present Cont. or Simple Present

It depends. The continuous form expresses temporary events - ie events already started but with a predictable end, while the simple form expresses permanent events - events that were true yeaterday, are true today and have no planned end. So :

Two of Ann's friends are married to Frenchmen. They live in Paris. - ie they're they're permanently as far as current plans are concerned.
But :

A couple of Ann's friends have decided to spend their gap year improving their French. They're living in Paris for 10 months - ie they're there temporarily and the action has a clearly intended end point.

Very often the distinction is more subjective than objective. For example, after I'd been in Italy about 10 years, I started to say I live in Italy. But my mother went on much longer saying My daughter is living in Italy - because of course she wanted to believe that it was only temporary and that I'd go back.
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