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その話は前にも聞いたよ。is translated as "I heard that story before". I assume that the subject is implicit, その話 "that story" is the topic, 前 is "before" and 聞いた is the past of hear. What about にも? Why is 前 marked with these particles?

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その話は前に聞いたよ。

The も means "too; also; as well". 前にも means "(something happened) before, too (as well as now)". So you'd say 前にも when something that happened before is happening again now. Compare:

  • その話は前にも聞いたよ。 I heard that before, too. / This is not the first time you've told me the story. / This is the second time you're telling me that.
  • その話は前聞いたよ。 I heard that before. / I know the story.

Another example:

  • その公園には前にも行ったことがあるよ。 I went to that park before, too. / This is the second time for me to go to that park.
  • その公園には前行ったことがあるよ。 I've been to that park.
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に in 前に can serve as a time marker (as in その時に) which would complete the "before" translation.

も and the ending よ give an additional sense of "already," perhaps multiple times before. The combined にも can express annoyance.

前にもあった:It has happened before.

前にも言ったけど: I've (already) said it before, but...

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