Past Continuous Tense

positive:           I/He/She/It        was       working.
                        We/You/They    were     working.
negative:          I/He/She/It        wasn't   working.
                        We/You/They    weren't  working.
interrogative:   (How)  Was      I/he/she/it     working?
                        (Why)  Were    we/you/they  working?

An action that took place during a particular moment in the past (which might be specified or assumed):
I was writing my homework at this time yesterday.
What were you doing last night? I called you around 9 but you didn't pick up. Were you watching television? 
The time at which the action is ongoing can be specified with an action in the past simple tense:
He was playing with the kids when I went in.
She lost her earrings while they were dancing.

Two past parallel actions will both be in the past continuous:
He was trying to sleep while the others were partying next door.
It was raining while I was walking to work.

Just like with the present, with past continuous tense:
a) you can express a temporary action:
I was living in Edinburgh at the time.
I didn't have to pay rent for a couple of months because I was staying with my parents.
b) you do not use state verbs:
She heard about the exhibition. (NOT She was hearing about the exhibition.)


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