The difference between Present Perfect and Present Perfect Continuous

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firee818

Senior Member
Chinese
Hi, I would be very much appreciated if someone could identify the difference meaning for the following sentences:-

Present Perfect

USE 2 Duration From the Past Until Now (Non-Continuous Verbs)


With Non-Continuous Verbs and non-continuous uses of Mixed Verbs, we use the Present Perfect to show that something started in the past and has continued up until now. "For five minutes," "for two weeks," and "since Tuesday" are all durations which can be used with the Present Perfect.

Examples:

  • I have had a cold for two weeks.
  • She has been in England for six months.
  • Mary has loved chocolate since she was a little girl.
Although the above use of Present Perfect is normally limited to Non-Continuous Verbs and non-continuous uses of Mixed Verbs, the words "live," "work," "teach," and "study" are sometimes used in this way even though they are NOT Non-Continuous Verbs.ENGLISH PAGE - Present Perfect
a.1). John has lived in Beijing since he was a child. (Does this sentence means that John is still living in Beijing now?).
a.2). John has been living in Beijing since he was a child. (Present Perfect Continuous).
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

b.1). I have visited the museum for three hours. ( Does this sentence mean that you started visiting the museum three hours ago and you are still continue visiting the museum?)
b.3). I have visited the museum (no time). (Does this sentence mean that you visited the museum in the past and this has an impact to the present now.i.e. I can talk about what I have seen in the museum?)
b.4). I have been visiting the museum for three hours.
b.5). I have been visiting the museum (no time).

Is 'visit' a non-continuous verb?


Thank you very much
 
  • apricots

    Senior Member
    English - US
    a1 and 2 mean the same thing. The difference is if you just say 'John has lived in Beijing.' that means at some point he lived in Beijing. If we say 'John has been living in Beijing.' that means he is living there now.

    b1 means that at some point you visited the museum (could be multiple visits) and those totaled 3 hours.
    b3 (where'd 2 go?) means that at some point in the past you visited the museum.
    b4 means that you are currently at the museum and have been there for 3 hours.
    b5 means that you have habitually been visiting the museum, maybe every Monday, for example.

    As a side note, people don't really use visit for the museum.
     

    firee818

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    b1 means that at some point you visited the museum (could be multiple visits) and those totaled 3 hours.
    For b(1), Does this sentence mean that you started visiting the museum three hours ago and you are still continue visiting the museum?

    Is 'visit' a non-continuous verb?
     
    Last edited:

    Englishmypassion

    Senior Member
    India - Hindi
    Is 'visit' a non-continuous verb?
    Yes, I suppose (though we do say "he is visiting his grandparents"), and for that very reason your museum sentences with "three hours" sound odd to me because you wouldn't normally visit a museum several times in just three hours. "I have been visiting this museum for the last 10 years" is fine as it means several visits, not one visit of a duration of ten years.:eek:
     

    firee818

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Yes, I suppose (though we do say "he is visiting his grandparents"), and for that very reason your museum sentences with "three hours" sound odd to me because you wouldn't normally visit a museum several times in just three hours. "I have been visiting this museum for the last 10 years" is fine as it means several visits, not one visit of a duration of ten years.:eek:
    But, it is also logic to have one visit for three hours.
     

    Englishmypassion

    Senior Member
    India - Hindi
    But, it is also logic to have one visit for three hours.
    But I think it would not be natural to say "I have visited/have been visiting the museum for three hours", and, in fact, the verb "visit" would not be required at all if you are still at the museum.

    I visited my grandparents today and spent the whole afternoon with them/at their house.
     
    Last edited:
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