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6

It's used for politeness. Here's what Martin writes in his 1975 Reference Grammar of Japanese, p.603: Sometimes the perfect is used more for politeness than for time reference: あなたはどなたでした = お名前は何とおっしゃいましたか ‘What did you say your name was?’ (when the person has actually not yet said); 判子をお持ちでしたね ‘You have your chop (= signature-seal) ...


5

When you have never met someone (or have no way of knowing the person, e.g. on the phone), どちら様ですか is how to enquire for someone's name/identity. When the circumstances/your memory suggest that you have met before, but you simply don't recall who they are, どちら様でしたか is more natural. (Note that, by extension, you can also use どちら様でしたか in the first case by ...


1

I really don't quite understand which part of the fantastic answer on the linked question you don't understand. I'll try to add some notes. である is for all practical purposes a copula (like だ). This means in particular that your sentence structure will consist of a topic/subject and a predicating noun phrase. The topics/subject may be marked by は/が/も; the ...



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