The Grammar of the English Tense System forms the first volume of a four-volume set, The Grammar of the English Verb Phrase. The other volumes, to appear over the next few years, will deal with mood and modality, aspect and voice. The first volume provides a grammar of tense which can be used both as an advanced reference grammar and as a scientific study which can act as a basis for and stimulus to further research. It provides not only a wealth of data but also a unique framework for the study of the English tense system, which achieves great predictive and explanatory power on the basis of a limited number of relatively simple rules. The book moves from a detailed exploration of the meaning and use of individual tenses to a thorough analysis of the way in which tenses function together as sets, and finally to a detailed examination of tenses in, and tenses interacting with, temporal adverbials. Original data is used frequently throughout the book to illustrate the theory discussed. Key features: This major reference work, a landmark publication from Mouton de Gruyter, differs from previously published English grammars because it is concerned with present-day English. takes into account the enormous linguistic developments over the past 70 years. analyzes not only written but also spoken English. is more "comprehensive" as it does not distinguish between standard and non-standard varieties of English.