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Reading Everyday,Extending Vision

The usage of before seems simple, but there are many esoteric aspects

2022-09-23 09:17:05


#英语语法#时间虽是不可再生资源,但是却与我们形影不离,这就造就了 before 很高的出镜率,因为无论是体现更早的时间还是前面的时间,before 都跟时间有密切的联系,而且 before 的多词性使它的用法丰富多彩。


#英语语法#

时间虽是不可再生资源,但是却与我们形影不离,这就造就了 before 很高的出镜率,因为无论是体现更早的时间还是前面的时间,before 都跟时间有密切的联系,而且 before 的多词性使它的用法丰富多彩。


一、before 作介词

1. 指定时序事件,相当于 earlier than sb /sth,意为”在…以前“,例如:

I must get home before nine o’clock.

我必须在九点以前到家。

Leave your keys at reception before departure.

离开前请把钥匙留在服务台。

I like to go for a run before breakfast.

我喜欢早饭前去跑步。

He arrived before me.

他比我先到。

2. 在某些情况下,before 也可以用来指定先后位置,相当于 in front of sb/sth,意为”在…面前(前面)“,对应的是介词 behind,例如:

They knelt before the throne.

他们跪在御座前。

Before you is a list of the points we have to discuss.

放在你面前的是一份我们要讨论的要点清单。

3. 表示在顺序或安排上某人或某物先于某人或某物,相当于 ahead of sb/sth,例如:

Your name comes before mine on the list.

名单上你的名字排在我的前面。

He puts his work before everything.

他一切以工作为重。

Four. In the presence of SB. SB is usually the person who is listening or waiting. For example:

He was brought before the judge.

他被带到裁判面前。

She said it before witnesses.

她当着证人的面讲出这事。

注意:在英文写作中,当提到已经写过的东西时,用 above 而不用 before,例如:

As the graph above shows, the rate of inflation has risen by 15%.

As the chart above shows, inflation has risen by 15% .

As stated above, there are four key findings from the study.

如上所述,本研究有四个关键发现。


二、before 作副词

作副词时,before 相当于 at an earlier time,in the past 或 already,意为”以前;过去;已经“。

1. The present tense, or any time before the time of speech, is used in a manner similar to the already. In English, they are often used with the present perfect tense, for example:

I have seen him before.

I have seen him before.

Have you been here before?

你以前来过这里吗?

I’m so looking forward to the trip. I haven’t been to Latin America before.

我非常期待这次旅行。我以前没去过拉丁美洲。

2. 表示在说话的某个过去时间之前的任何时候,即表示过去的过去,常跟过去完成时连用,例如:

Suddenly I realized that I had seen him before.

突然我意识到我以前见过他。

Analysis: The time of speaking is realized, then the before is realized, expressing the past past, so the past was seen.

I introduced Tom to Olivia last night. They hadn’t met before.

我昨晚把汤姆介绍给奥利维亚。他们以前没见过面。

解析:说话的时间是过去(introduced),那么 before 是在 introduced 之前,表达的是过去的过去,因此用过去完成时(hadn't met)。

3. 与诸如 day,morning,night,week,month 或 year 等时间名词一起使用,表示过去的一个 day,morning,night,week,month 或 year 等,例如:

Two people were ill at work yesterday and three people the day before!

昨天有两个人生病上班,前天有三个人!

A: Did you graduate in 1989?

你1989年大学毕业吗?

B: No, actually, I finished college the year before.

不是,事实上我是在1988年毕业的。

解析:这里的 the year before 译成什么年份取决于说话时的年份,不过保守还是译成”1988 年“比较好,不要译成”前年“,因为如果译成”前年“的话,那么表明说话时所在的年份是1990,但是这个无从考证。

Note: Use Ago instead of before when indicating a number of times from now on, for example:

这封信是几天前寄来的。

✔: The letter came a few days ago.

❌: The letter came a few days before.

刚才她还在这儿。

✔: She was here

❌: She was here just a minute before.

before 的用法看似简单,实则有很多深奥之处


Third, before as a conjunction

1. 作从属连词时,before 引导的从句可以放在句首或句尾,放在句首时,通常用逗号把主从句分开,例如:

我总是在吃饭前喂狗。

I always feed the dogs before I have dinner.

Before I have dinner, I always feed the dogs.

2. before 与一般现在时连用谈论将来,例如:

我走之前给你打电话。

✔: I will call you before I go.

❌: I will call you before I will go.

As a rule, the future tense can not appear in adverbial clauses of time.

3. before 与完成时或过去时连用,强调 before 从句中的动作没发生或可能不会发生,例如:

You can’t watch TV before you have finished your homework.

你在做完作业之前不能看电视。

解析:have finished 这个动作还没发生或可能不会发生。

He lost his temper before I had said a word.

我还没说一句话,他就发脾气了。

解析:had said 这个动作还没发生或可能不会发生。

Before I had a chance to thank him, he’d gone.

我还没来得及感谢他,他就走了。

解析:had 这个动作还没发生或可能不会发生。

You’re interrupting her before she has even spoken.

她还没开口你就打断她了。

Resolution: has spoken this action has not occurred or may not occur.

在正式的写作中, before 引导的时间状语从句通常可以省略句子的部分成分,例如:

你不能在做完工作之前回家。

✔: You can't go home before finishing the work.

✔: Before finishing the work, you can't go home.

煮牛奶之前,先加鸡蛋。

✔: Add the egg before bringing the milk to the boil.

✔: Before bringing the milk to the boil, add the egg.


IV. before and other ingredients

before 常与 just,immediately,shortly 或 long 等副词以及 days,weeks,months 或 years 等时间名词连用并置于 before 之前,用来强调短暂的时间,例如:

We left just before the final curtain.

我们刚好在演出结束前离开。

He reached Cambridge shortly before three o'clock.

他快到3点的时候抵达了剑桥。

It is significant that he changed his will only days before his death.

他在临终前几天修改遗嘱,这很能说明问题。


五、beforehand

有的时候 beforehand 可以代替 before,特别是所涉及的时间没那么具体,常见于非正式的口语中,例如:

Make a list of your questions beforehand.

事先列出你的问题。

I wish we'd known about it beforehand.

要是我们预先知道这事就好了。


六、before long

Before long 意为”不久,很快”,相当于 after a short time,特别出现在写作中,例如:

Before long he took over the editing of the magazine.

他不久就接手负责杂志的编辑工作。

We'll be home before long.

我们很快就要到家了。


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