Can anyone explain me, please, what is the difference between this two sentences: "I haven't seen him for five years" and "I hadn't seen him for five years"?

In English, we use both of them when we speak about something that happened in the past, but still, I'm not sure that I really understand the difference between present perfect and past perfect, since they both can be used for this purpose.

1 Answer 1


Have you seen John lately?

No, I haven't seen him for five years. Why, is he back in town?


When I was in Spain last year, someone tapped me on the shoulder. I turned round - it was John! I hadn't seen him for ten years. I see him regularly now.

"had" is past tense.

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