I am sorry about dragging this question out.


1) I have lived in the USA for two years.


2) I had lived in the USA for two years.

3) I lived in the USA last year.



I know what difference there is between #1 and #2 and I think present and past perfect tense go well with for because actions in the tenses persist for a while, but past verbs go well with last year because actions in the past tense finish at a point. However, we can see past verbs with for, for example, 4) I lived in the USA for two years and I think #2 and #4 are acceptable and have the same meaning. What do you teachers think about it?


P.S I know that had p.p has two possible meanings: one is a past form of have p.p, and the other is the more past than the past.

edited Oct 08 '12 at 12:16 Hans Contributor

1 answer


3) is grammatical but unclear in meaning. It would usually be used with a more informative adverbial phrase:


I lived in the US for three months last year.

I lived in the US for the whole of last year.

I lived in the US for a while last year.

link answered Oct 08 '12 at 13:13 Peter Guess Expert

I think #3 makes perfect sense. Think of it this way: I moved to Nevada this year, but:

I lived in Arizona last year.

If you moved from the US to (insert another country here), you could say, and be understood, "I lived in the US last year.""For how long?""I had lived in the US for two years."

Tony ProanoJan 18 '13 at 16:40

Grammarly deleted several paragraph breaks.... that's not what it was supposed to look like.

Tony ProanoJan 18 '13 at 16:41

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