Hi! I was wondering what's the difference between "has been" and "was". For instance- below is an example:

I was there

I have been there.

Could anyone please kindly help? Thank you!
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I was wondering what's the difference between "has been" and "was". For instance- below is an example:

I was there Just tells me about the past. No emphasis on the past event as having importance in the present.

I have been there. Tells me about the past but shows that the past event has importance in the present. eg I have been in Japan in the past, so I understand Japanese society at the present time. Think of it as I have the result now of this past experience.

Best wishes, Clive
If you tell me, "I was there", I imagine some time in the past, and I picture you 'there' at that time.
If you tell me, "I have been there", I imagine that if I looked through your diary, I would see an entry that said you were 'there' one or more times in the past.

The "story" is that you were there.
"I was there" actually tells the action of the story.
"I have been there" just says that the action of the story happened.
It says you have the experience of having been part of that story.

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Mr. clive your answer is simple and smart .. you have explained in a minute what many books could not explain it

thank you very much.


Hi Jamal,
You're welcome.
Try out our live chat room.
it is easiest way of explanation ever since i read .
If i were to look for as much information as possible within any given sentance or phrase. These 2 examples "have been and "was" are not really different in linquistics if you choose to accept them that way.

The only way these to are different is if you add expression and in what form of creature or device you are, seriously!

Look at it this way

You see a sticker on a car

"i was in London" or "i have been in London" > exactly the same message and same information reaches your mind , except you will know that the "i was in London" sticker costs less.

A person says
"i was in London" or "i have been in London"> only emotion expression of voiced content makes these 2 different, but i garantee if 2 people said "i was in london" and one said it gladfully and the other said it spitefully , then you would understand the difference.

A computer program with voice analysis

"i was in London" or "i have been in London"> no emotion and a non living entity? try and tell me if you think you recieve more or less information from either phrase?

So the basis of simple and perfect is on paper and some might say that the phrase "have been" adds positive connotation , where as "was" is a Neutral prospective ,or some people might be taught that it is the other way around, "was"(positive) , "has been"(neutral).

To make my point and to nullify hypocrisy within the frame work of the learnered.

All things learned start with what is called "Simple" , then all things progress to the perfected!
What is learned by this is that everything has to start somewhere before it can be called perfect.

Without learning hypocrisy and other mutable rules and guidlines, lets just say that "simple is first and then a perfected form can appear after the simple has begun.

To conclude that it doesnt matter what is simple of perfected in terms of this ideal"was or has been" , but now a new word appears "continous" .

Can simple continue to a perfect? yes
Can perfect continue to a simple? yes
But remember that the simple has to come first before the perfect , or the start has to be before the end.
Please note though that if we all agreed that "has been" is perfect then "was" would become simple and therefore using a simple term.

So finally something appears in your mind that no book or physical law can prevail against.
It would be considered positive if "simple" went towards "perfect"
It would be considered negative if "perfect went towards "simple"

positive can relate to emotion, number,etc etc
negative can relate to emotion, number,etc etc

So where is Neutral?
Nuetral is the key to this whole thinking dilemma.

Giving the 'Neutral' tag of classification determines which way is positive and which way is negative.
If we gave "was" the tag of Neutral, then "has been would be Positive"
If we gave "has been" the Tag of Neutral then "Was" would be "negative"

So to tally up the size of my head ache.
My head ache has been fun
both are same.. linguistic playing like that
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