Learn English – When we entered, he had been there


So I heard this sentence and also few contradictions about that.
Does it mean that when they entered, he was already gone because he had there been before them?
Or he just was there before them and still is..

Best Answer

It looks as if something has been left out from this sentence, the meaning isn't clear as it is. It would look natural like this:

When we entered, we realised he had already been there.(Meaning: he went there and left before we did.)

I suppose it is the choice of the verbs used in the initial sentence that doesn't make the meaning clear. If you want to express that he was there before we went to the particular place, then you should say "When we entered he had already arrived" or "When we entered he was already there."