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Thread: Skh

  1. Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Malaysia
      • Current Location:
      • Malaysia

    • Join Date: Jan 2006
    • Posts: 431

    Exclamation Skh

    hello there,

    what are the differences between these 2 statement.."?

    It has been a long time i did'nt see you.

    i have not met you for a long time.

    • Join Date: May 2006
    • Posts: 150

    Re: Skh

    "It's been a long time since I've seen you" or "It's been a long time since we last met" mean the same thing.

  2. Casiopea's Avatar

    • Join Date: Sep 2003
    • Posts: 12,970

    Re: Skh

    I agree with river. The first sentence is ungrammatical.

    1) *It has been a long time i did'nt see you.

    Additionally, the second sentence is structurally grammatical but semantically awkward. The verb "met" doesn't work here:

    2) *I have not met you for a long time.

    On its own, the verb meet/met expresses a one time event; if you want it to expresses additional events, you need to define it, like this,

    3) I have not met you for drinks in a long time.
    4) I met with the committee for a long time.

    With regards to the difference between simple past (i.e., I didn't see) and the present perfect (i.e., I haven't seen), time is the motivator. With the simple tenses time is known or rather understood within the context of the speech event, whereas with the present perfect, time is unknown or not important. For example,

    Present Perfect: Have you eaten dinner?
    The speaker is not concerned with when you ate; S/he is concerned only with whether or not you ate at all. Use the present perfect when the event (eat) is more important than the time, than when the event (eat) took place.

    Simple Past: Did you eat dinner?
    The speaker is concerned with both the time (when you ate) and the event (if you ate).

    All the best.


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