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English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

What are the the differences in meaning between the following phrases:

Please try to explain it with as many examples as possible!

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You always put the definite article in front of

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The difference is past week would be to count back exactly a week from now, while last week is the calendar week preceding the present week. Past week is usually used when going through something/event. Last week is usually used to point to that particular week.

For the past week, it was raining heavily.

The past week refers to themost recentweek. If this is the fourth week of July, the past week would be the third week of July.

The last week refers to thefinalweek in a series. If the fourth week of July is the last, or final of four weeks of July, the current week would be thelastweek of July.

Last week can be used for the past week, if the implication is that the past week is the last of all weeksup to now.

The converse is not necessarily true; the past week cannot generally be used to describe the last week. Unless we were in say, the first week of August, in which case the past week would describe the last week of July.

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