[Vocabulary] be/go

yahyapmb

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What is exactly the difference between "He had been to the barn." and "He had gone to the barn." Thanks.
 
J

J&K Tutoring

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1. He had been to the barn. He was there at one time in the past, but he is not there at the (past) time referenced. I could tell he had been to the barn by the smell of his clothes.

2. He had gone to the barn.
a. It might mean the same as #1. He had gone to the barn and returned to the house by the time I got home.
b. It might mean he was still there: I asked Mother where Tom was. She said he had gone to the barn.
 

yahyapmb

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My problem is with the preposition "to". let me tell in this way: what is the difference between "He had been to the barn" and "He had been in the barn". Thanks again.
 

GoesStation

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My problem is with the preposition "to". Let me [STRIKE]tell in[/STRIKE] say it this way: what is the difference between "He had been to the barn" and "He had been in the barn"? Thanks again.
The first means he had been close to or inside the barn. The second means he had been inside it.
 

teechar

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I agree with the subtle distinction explained above by GoesStation. However, I think a barn is not the best example to use here.

Consider:

He had been to the White House. [near or inside]
He had been in the White House. [inside]

He had been to the Eiffel Tower. [near or inside]
He had been in the Eiffel Tower. [inside]
 
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