> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Jens Wilkinson > What about "yesterday he was already dying"? Meaning that he > didn't die yesterday, but the transitional process started > yesterday. > > That actually illustrates how problematic tense can be. In > English "to be dying" means that you aren't dead yet, but > will soon be dead. But when we say "he is jumping" it doesn't > mean he's getting ready to jump. Or perhaps as a better > analogy, "find" is also a process with completion, like > "die". But we don't say "he is finding it" to mean that he > has begun the process of looking. In Japanese, incidentally, > "die" is "shinu," but the meaning of "shinde imasu", or "is > dying," is actually "to be dead". In Japanese you would need > to say something like "shinisou," which means "he seems > likely to die". So I would suggest using a term like "soon > die" to mean what you intend to mean by "dying". This really isn't tense, but aspect and to some extent a semantic difference. I don't even think "soon die" works right because there are some forms of death that occur slowly as with some diseases like cancer. "Soon" of course is a relative term. "dying" is the process of transitioning from one state, "life" into another state, "lifelessness" (=death). In a similar way, we could also term "birth" as a transition into a state of "living". We often do this in English anyway when we say something "comes to life". "Find" has more than one meaning in English so it's not that clear. In one sense "find" could be the successful completion of the action of searching for something: "I found my keys." (I didn't remember where I put them so I looked around until I found them) There's also another meaning where someone just happens upon something by chance when they weren't searching for anything: "I found some keys." (I was going about my business and discovered a set of keys). Also it's possible to terminate a search without finding anything, in which case there is nothing "found" at all, rather someone has just given up the action of searching. The more interesting English word is "get" which in common speech is frequently used instead of "become" though we also use its past form "got" to replace "have".