When I was in New York, I visited the Statue of Liberty.
When I was in New York, I had visited the Statue of Liberty.
- What is the meaning of sentence 2? Is it the same as sentence 1?
- Does it mean that I visited the Statue of Liberty before staying in New York? Or is it simply ungrammatical?
My friend asked me about the movie Spartacus. When I lived in Berlin, I had seen the movie thrice. So I could tell him that it was very good!
In this example, the time reference is his friend asking about Spartacus. The past perfect is used because his seeing the movie (the point of event) is anterior to the point of reference. Here the when-clause only works as a supplement.
In this question, I'd like to ask:
- How is the past perfect interpreted when it is used with a when-clause referring to a time interval without any other specific time of reference.
a) Can the past perfect be interpreted as the simple past (i.e. sentence 2 has the same meaning as sentence 1)?
b) Can the starting point of the interval (the time when I arrived in NY) be interpreted as the point of reference (I visited the Statue of Liberty in my previous stay in NY)?
I've been thinking about these possibilities since I read 5.4 Non-present perfects in CGEL, which I quoted in my previous question. In it there are two examples:
ii(a) He lost his key while he was running home.
ii(b) He had lost his key while he was running home.
And these two are considered to have the same meaning.