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This is the first sentence of an NHK article published today (September 2, 2016) discussing the high number of typhoons in waters near Japan.

気象庁によると、ことし6月から8月までに7つの台風が日本の近くに来ています。

According to the Japanese Meteorological Agency, this year between June and August, 7 typhoons approached Japan. (I omitted near because I think approach implies it).

I'm wondering why the article chose to use 来ています to describe what the article itself implies is a past action.

I understand that the ~ている form describes continued state when used with momentary verbs like 来る. However, I don't see why a typhoon approaching is considered a continued state since the typhoon is currently not still there. I would have assumed it should be either a completed past action or a completed past state that is not currently continuing.

My question explicitly is, could someone possibly contrast the meanings of the above sentence if 来ました or 来ていました had been used instead?

Full article: http://www3.nhk.or.jp/news/easy/k10010664611000/k10010664611000.html

Thanks

marked as duplicate by 永劫回帰, Blavius, Dono, macraf, Chocolate Sep 2 '16 at 23:56

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

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    Of interest: japanese.stackexchange.com/questions/3361/… – 永劫回帰 Sep 2 '16 at 16:51
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    For more, look た vs ている on this Q&A, that may prove very informative. – 永劫回帰 Sep 2 '16 at 16:52
  • This link might be useful guidetojapanese.org/forum/viewtopic.php?id=6734 – G-Cam Sep 6 '16 at 14:46
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    According to "A Dictionary of Intermediate Grammar", page 35 and page 37: "Usually a series of past events are narrated in the past tenses. But primarily in written Japanese discourse that narrates a past event, past tenses often switch to nonpast tenses. " "The use of such nonpast tenses has an effect of creating a vivid sense of immediateness to the reader ". So the article could have said : 7つの台風が日本の近くに来ました。 but 来ています is more dramatic. – hisao m Oct 14 '16 at 13:57
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For 「昨日 寝てない」 there are a few different possible interpretations.

  1. present perfect   「昨日から 寝てない」

  2. general condition, habit   「最近 よく寝てない」

  3. (past perfect?) or Experience

    3a.  Preparation, e.g. for a test.   ---------------   See: Meaning of 寝てない


気象庁によると、ことし6月から8月までに7つの台風が日本の近くに来ています。

This has (mostly) elements of [ present perfect ] (... so far, there have been ...)

and possibly [ general condition, habit ]

My question explicitly is, could someone possibly contrast the meanings of the above sentence if 来ました or 来ていました had been used instead?

  • 気象庁によると、ことし6月から8月までに7つの台風が日本の近くに来ました。 <----- This is just a statement of fact. Semantically, very flat.

  • 気象庁によると、ことし6月から8月までに7つの台風が日本の近くに来ています。 <----- This suggests that we are psychologically engaged / invested in this information. -- that we don't want another big one to hit us (soon).

  • 気象庁によると、ことし6月から8月までに7つの台風が日本の近くに来ていました。 <----- This is much less suspenseful. The assumption is ... [ We had 7 of them, but the 8th one is not expected any time soon. ]

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    that we don't want another big one to hit us (soon). -> No it doesn't imply that. The sentence is used in a context like "So far we had 7, and there's possibility that we'll have more. / So far we have had 7, and we may or may not have more." We had 7 of them, but the 8th one is not expected any time soon. -> No it doesn't imply that. It's used in a context like "We had 7 from Jun to Aug, (now it's Sep/Oct/Nov/Dec,) and we didn't have any more after Aug. / and we had 1/2/3... more after Aug." きています is more like "So far we have had", like present perfect tense, and – Chocolate Sep 4 '16 at 0:41
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    (cont.) きていました is more like "We had had~~ (and after that we had...)", like past perfect tense. – Chocolate Sep 4 '16 at 0:44

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