been around


(has/have/had) been around


  • (existed) been present and active.
  • to have gained worldly experience.
  • to have seen or experienced several things in one’s life.
  • to describe life experiences.
  • to denote that one is not easily fooled.

 Examples in Sentences

  1. This is not a new viral video; it’s been around for a couple of years.
  2. They have been around long enough to see a few things.
  3. If John had been around, he would not have allowed the loading of the ship due to bad weather.
  4. You can’t fool someone that has been around since the 60s.
  5. I have been around long enough to learn a few valuable lessons.
  6. There is nothing new about laptops; they’ve been around for years.
  7. I have been around the block a few times.


In the history of idioms that have been established by native English speakers, “have been around” needs to be separated and sectioned off initially since “around” can be dated back to the 1300s and carries a very literal definition, as well as a figurative one. For ESL students, this could be another of the tough and confusing phrases that English-speaking individuals use quite often. The etymology of the idiom is quite simple, as it means to have gained worldly experience. As proverbs go, it is one of the more common ones to have been developed by English-speaking individuals, but also one whose meaning tends to confuse those who see English as a difficult language.

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