Since 'tense' is often used incorrectly*, we use the term 'temporality' to capture the temporal nature of a given verb conjugation: past, present or future.
Languages have to express distinctions in time, and verbs play an important role in this respect. Verb tenses have two main functions:
- They situate an event as happening in the present, past or future.
- They indicate the time at which an event happens relative to other events.
*See Tense / Mood