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Present perfect query.


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Hello Hari,

As you may noticed I'm not Minoo, but if I can help ... :)

There are two "had" in the sentence above because it is in the Past Perfect. The reason is that the first part of the sentence -- "I wasn't hungry"-- is in the Past Simple. And the reason why you were not hungry is that you had your lunch before. And when you talk about an action that occurred before another action (or state, like not being hungry) you must use the Past Perfect.

The first had  is the past of have  and is used as an auxiliary verb (or helping verb), while the second had  is the past participle of the verb have. In this case, having lunch means eating lunch.

The contraction of the first had is often used, at least when speaking: "I'd had my lunch". But the full form is used to emphasize the statement, like in your own sentence above: "I had just had  lunch" (so you weren't hungry).

I hope I've answered your question,


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  • Head Tutor

Thank you, Hari, for the question, and Phil, for the answer.

Indeed, as Phil says, this is not the Present Perfect tense, but the Past Perfect tense. The first 'had' is the auxiliary verb, and the second 'had' is the main verb. Compare:

I AM not hungry because I HAVE just HAD (eaten) lunch.

I WAS not hungry because I HAD just HAD (eaten) lunch. 

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