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  1. #1
    JACEK1 is offline Key Member
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    long with present perfect versus a long time ago with simple past

    Hello all forum users!

    The sell-by date has long expired.The sell-by date expired a long time ago.

    The above-mentioned sentences were created by me, and in my opinion they mean exactly the same. The only difference is the use of tenses. "Long" tends to be used with the Present Perfect tense whereas "a long time ago" is usually employed with the Simple Past tense.

    I would be grateful for putting me right on that.

  2. #2
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
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    Re: long with present perfect versus a long time ago with simple past

    Quote Originally Posted by JACEK1 View Post
    Hello all forum users!

    The sell-by date has long expired.The sell-by date expired a long time ago.

    The above-mentioned sentences were created by me, and in my opinion they mean exactly the same. The only difference is the use of tenses. "Long" tends to be used with the Present Perfect tense whereas "a long time ago" is usually employed with the Simple Past tense.

    I would be grateful for putting me right on that.
    You can't use "a long time ago" with the present perfect because "a long time ago" is an adverbial phrase referring to a specific time in the past - which, as you know, is not allowed with the present perfect.
    'Long' means "for a long time". "I have long admired his talents". You can use that with the present perfect; it means for a long time up until now at least.

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