30 and 40 deep in the shop

HSS

Senior Member
Standard Japanese, Sendaian Japanese
30 and 40 deep in the shop
I have no idea what this means. Does this mean 'The people were standing in the shop the dimension of which is 30ft x 40ft'?

He left home as soon as he graduated from high school-to get away from the Glass Blowers and learn to be a pilot-but he can still describe, in detail, blowing the glass:

"Sometimes there would be people standing 30 and 40 deep in the shop, looking at us. We worked at two elevated fire benches, with two sets of fires. Dad worked the one closest to the center, Mother the one closest to the wall.
(Chicago Tribune)
Hiro
 
  • ewie

    Senior Member
    English English
    Hullo Hiro. If you counted the people in the shop from front to back, there would be 30-40 of them. If they were also 30-40 across, that would mean there were [gets calculator out] 900-1,600 people in the shop.
     

    ewie

    Senior Member
    English English
    I presume he means 'some days they were 30 deep, other days they were 40 deep':)

    (I don't expect the author meant us to think about it too much: he just wanted to convey the idea 'loads of people':D)
     

    Wordnip

    Senior Member
    British English
    I see. Difficult to understand! :)
    We'd usually say, 'thirty to forty deep' or 'thirty or forty deep' and it is just an expression (the numbers will vary) to signify that there are many people from, say, front to back. It is not supposed to be a precise statement of the number but it might be a rough estimate.
     

    HSS

    Senior Member
    Standard Japanese, Sendaian Japanese
    Okay, so you'd say 'thirty or forty' as well. And yes 'there would be people standing thirty to/and/or forty rows deep in the shop' too.
     

    RM1(SS)

    Senior Member
    English - US (Midwest)
    I couldn't say "There would be people standing thirty to/and/or forty rows deep in the shop." Other people might, though.
     

    HSS

    Senior Member
    Standard Japanese, Sendaian Japanese
    There would be people standing thirty to/and/or forty rows deep in the shop.

    Oh, okay, this you don't say. Drop off 'rows,' and it stands right.
     
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