I know that the te imashita is the past progressive, yet when asking if my japanese friend had eaten, she often replies with tabetenakatta, and my teacher says the te iru form can also mean " Have eaten" or "Just ate" (I can't remember which.) I wanna know the specifics and if this goes with any verb? Thanks.

  • 2
    "just ate" is 食べたところだ, which is a different topic. – naruto Aug 19 '19 at 0:44
  • So in that sense, tabetenai can mean "in a state of having not eaten"? – GlimGlamGloom Aug 19 '19 at 0:48
  • 2
    食べてない is either "is not eating" or "have not eaten" depending on the context. 食べていました is either "was eating" or "had eaten" depending on the context. – naruto Aug 19 '19 at 4:45
  • so why use this when one can say tabeta? Is it just like a more natural thing? – GlimGlamGloom Aug 20 '19 at 10:05

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