How do these differ?

i. X has always been there.

ii. There has always been X.


i. How long has there been X?

ii. How long has X been there?


The second couple of examples are simply the questions that precede the first two examples. I'll address the difference between the answers. You can deduce the difference between the questions by applying the same logic.

The difference essentially is regarding who or what X is referring to.
In the first sentence "X has always been there", X would be a something concrete:

  1. "The chair has always been there"
  2. "That cat has always been there"
  3. "My car has always been there"

In the second sentence "There has always been X", X would be something more general or abstract:

  1. "There has always been bad weather in this region"
  2. "There has always been a bond between us"
  3. "There has always been someone to comfort me"

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