3 different color blocks

Renatrix

Senior Member
polski
I have three blocks, each one is in a different color. Is it correct to say "I have three different color blocks" or it should be "I have three different-colored blocks"?
 
  • Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    In BE, the most correct written form would be "I have three differently-coloured blocks". Different-coloured is casual, common in speech.

    However, since you're using American spelling, the rules may be different in AE.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    For clarity's sake I would tend to switch it around and say, "I have three blocks, each a different color."

    "Different-colored" or "differently-coloured" allows for the possibility that they are colored in some unusual way, to my way of thinking, and I don't think that is what you intend to say.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    I'm not so sure, Parla. :) I can imagine saying "I have three blocks of different colors" as well as a few other variations. I guess we'll have to see what other Americans say on the thread.
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    I agree with Parla that many people (only Americans?) would say that even if they wouldn't write it. I say that with a spoken emphasis that could probably only be written with parentheses.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    I have three blocks; each a different color.
    I have three blocks, each one a different color.
    I have one red block, one yellow block and one green block.

    The ways to say this are many. The key is to make sure that the meaning is perfectly clear.
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    Which word would you emphasize, Myridon? It does sound more natural to me if "different" and "color" have about the same emphasis. I'm just curious.
    I suppose "color" is emphasized, though I think it may be more rhythmically emphasized rather than stressed. :confused:
    To paraphrase a quotation: Writing about speech is like dancing about architecture. (I've pretty much given up on any thread that has to do with pronunciation.)
     

    Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    Well, in all the cases (different(ly) colour/coloured), I'd emphasise blocks. To emphasise colour would suggest that there's a thing called a colour-block. There might be, but we haven't been told, and I greatly doubt it.
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    In distinguishing between three color blocks and three color-blocks, it seems to me that I change something about color and leave block as-is. That's why I prefer to be vague about it.
     

    Renatrix

    Senior Member
    polski
    The thing is that it is something that I need to say and write to describe materials used in a task testing children's cognitive skills. To sum it up, it is OK to say (to children): 'I have three different color blocks: a red one, a green one and a yellow one.' What will then be OK in an academic manual describing the task? Is 'three different-colored blocks' more formal?
     

    Renatrix

    Senior Member
    polski
    Please give us a full sentence to work with in your academic situation.
    This is my sentence:
    'Materials: two three-piece wooden block sets, one set is the color of wood and the other has three different color(ed) blocks.'
    I started another thread on the 'color of wood,' but I haven't decided yet how to rephrase it.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    I would say "...and the other has three blocks painted different colors" or "...and the other has three blocks, each painted a different color." Since you specify three blocks later in the sentence you could omit "three-piece" at the start of the sentence.

    "Materials: two wooden block sets, one set of three unpainted wooden blocks and another with three painted blocks, each a different color."
     
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