"did you live" and "have you lived'

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"did you live" and "have you lived'

Postby Keithlaw » Tue, 08 Dec 2009 10:42:48 -0500

Hi,

Why would you say "How long did you live there before coming here?" instead of "How long have you lived there before coming here?"

Thank you.
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Re: "did you live" and "have you lived'

Postby Deborah the ESL Tutor » Wed, 13 Jan 2010 07:22:57 -0500

You would say “How long did you live there before coming here?” because it implies the person no longer lives there. You could also say, “How long have you lived there?” if the person still lives there.

Here is another example. If a person used to work as a mechanic but is now working as a manager, you would say: “How long did you work as a mechanic?” If a person is currently working as a mechanic and you want to know how long he has been in that profession, you would say: “How long have you worked as a mechanic?”

I hope this is helpful.
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