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  1. #31
    Soup's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'Been' - past participle of GO?

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab
    (On the Hilferty paper) No startling new information I'm afraid.
    Just curious. Which parts of the paper did you find to be similar to the points covered in this thread?

  2. #32
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    Default Re: 'Been' - past participle of GO?

    Quote Originally Posted by Soup View Post
    Just curious. Which parts of the paper did you find to be similar to the points covered in this thread?
    I can't answer for bhai, but I thought that the paper made no points that I hadn't come up with myself - in my own mind. Unfortunately, and I think this may be what you are suggesting with your question, we did not actually make these points in the thread.

    To me it was, and is, so self-evident that been is the past participle of BE, not GO, that I neglected to do anything about it.

    Afterthought - I think bhai was actually saying that he had nothing new to add. He wasn't referring to the paper. I misunderstood him originally.
    Last edited by 5jj; 02-Mar-2011 at 19:57. Reason: afterthought added,

  3. #33
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    Default Re: 'Been' - past participle of GO?

    I did say (post #21) that I was not going to add anything else. However, I have had a couple of PMs asking me about my words in post # 32: To me it was, and is, so self-evident that been is the past participle of BE, not GO, that I neglected to do anything about it. I have decided to respond, as briefly as I can, in this thread. Be warned there is nothing original or exciting here.

    It seems to me that been cannot be considered a past participle of GO because:

    1. BE been; Go gone. BE gone.

    2. As there appears to be complete agreement that BE been and Go gone in all situations except I have been to (place) and (possibly) some instances of I have been verb+ing, it seems very strange to claim that BE gone here and nowhere else.

    3. In I have been to (place), been to is not synonymous with gone to; it means, roughly, been (or come) to and left. In sentences speaking about going, examples containing the words go and those containing the words have gone differ only in the way that a change of tense always involves a change in meaning. However, in sentences speaking about going/being + to, examples containing the words go and those containing the words have been differ not only in tense, but also semantically.
    Hilferty looks at this in more depth here: Why Go Doesn't Have Two Past Participles

    I accept that I have been to (place) is a strange use of the present perfect of BE, and I accept that it is often useful to consider this form when teaching the present perfect of GO. I cannot deny that fewer authorities support my view than the opposing one. However, as I suggested in post #21, these authorities have merely asserted that been is the past participle of GO. Nobody that we have come across so far has justified this assertion. In view of the three points I made above, I do feel that the onus is on the holders of this belief to justify it.

  4. #34
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    Default Re: 'Been' - past participle of GO?

    "Hello, I was supposed to meet 5jj here, I'm afraid I'm a little late." "Sorry, you've missed him, he's been and gone."

  5. #35
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    Default Re: 'Been' - past participle of GO?

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    "Hello, I was supposed to meet 5jj here, I'm afraid I'm a little late." "Sorry, you've missed him, he's been and gone."
    You've been and gone and done it now!

    The 'been and gone and past participle' construction is a very informal, some would say sub-standard, way of noting that somebody has done something that the speaker feels is unwise, silly, reprehensible or surprising.

  6. #36
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    Default Re: 'Been' - past participle of GO?

    He has been (here), he was here earlier, and gone (away), now he has left, he went away.
    I can't see anything wrong with that. "Been" and "gone" quite clearly mean different things. Nothing to do with "been and gone and done it".

  7. #37
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    Default Re: 'Been' - past participle of GO?

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    He has been (here), he was here earlier, and gone (away), now he has left, he went away.
    I can't see anything wrong with that. "Been" and "gone" quite clearly mean different things. Nothing to do with "been and gone and done it".
    I agree. I was being facetious.

    I suppose we should also note the mother's question to the child, "Have you been today?" meaning, "Have you evacuated your bowels?". It is interesting to note that "Have you gone?" is also possible here.

    Some might feel that there is an understood "to the lavatory/toilet/loo/bathroom/etc?", but I don't think this is necessarily true. A child, urged by its mother to try, might actually be sitting in the loo and say, "I'm trying, but I can't go." We can also have a person, the type that talks to their pets, seeing a cat beginning to scratch in a corner, say, "Don't you go there!"

  8. #38
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    Default Re: 'Been' - past participle of GO?

    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post

    I accept that I have been to (place) is a strange use of the present perfect of BE, ... .
    I don't see how it's strange. Been in that context means experienced, to have experienced a place, a situation, and so on; e.g., I have been in your situation before means I have experienced that situation/met with that situation and am no longer in that situation. Likewise, I have experienced London before. I have been there and am no longer there.

    It's neither the paradigmatic oddity (go, went, been) nor the lack of a meaningful base form (i.e., ?I be London) that makes the present perfect of BE seem strange but rather its association with gone in that context. Why? Because its deixis is similar yet opposing:


    Been
    I experienced that situation then and I am no longer in that situation now.

    Gone
    I have left that location there and I am at this location now.


    The similarities between been and gone:

    • been: I experienced that situation then
    • gone: I left that location there
      • Deixis: far from the speaker
        • then (Time) and there (Space)
    Switch the situation with a location and the result is I have experienced (location) then, which is close in meaning in its deixis to that gone. Been and gone are close in meaning, but they do not express one and the same meaning.


    From my point of view, the present perfect use of BE (been) is not a past participle of GO. While it shares partial deictic similarities with gone (a possible reason speakers use been and gone interchangeably in that context, which in turn reflects descriptivists' assertive accounts of its usage), the differences between the two are too weighty for a merger to have taken place and the reason other speakers, such as myself, can't accept been as the past participle of GO. Been is the past participle of BE, at least this year.

  9. #39
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    Default Re: 'Been' - past participle of GO?

    Quote Originally Posted by Soup View Post
    I don't see how it's strange.
    Isn't it strange that I can say

    I've been to London.


    and I can't say

    I am to London?

    I agree with 5jj that this usage is strange and I think it's strange because of the "to". I don't know if that's 5jj's reason too though.

  10. #40
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    Default Re: 'Been' - past participle of GO?

    Quote Originally Posted by Soup View Post
    I don't see how it's strange. Been in that context means experienced, to have experienced a place, a situation, and so on
    I find it 'strange' when it is used with 'to'. That's all.

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