Abbreviating dates and typing out time spans

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herut

Senior Member
HKI
Finnish
I'm familiar with how to type out dates (and am aware of the various modes of doing so), but I'm having trouble with time spans, used in sentences:

"The event will take place between 1 January and 2 February, 2009."
or
"The event will take place 1 January - 2 February, 2009."
or even
"The event will take place 1 Jan - 2 Feb, 2009"

Are the latter two formally acceptable?

What about list-like settings, where you must be as succinct as possible:

Trumpet Music Festival, 1 Jan-5 Jan
Flugelhorn Music Festival, 12 Jun-5 Jul
etc.

En-dashes or em-dashes, spaces around dashes or no?

If you could link me to a page that covers these sort of things, I'd be most grateful too. Most pages and guides seem to overlook this aspect of typing out dates.

Thanks!
 
  • JoanTaber

    Senior Member
    English Northeast USA
    Herut,

    There are so many house styles, you should check with a publisher regarding style. However, your first sentence is absolutely fine (perhaps without the comma). Generally, an en-dash is used between dates. I use a space between en-dashes simply because it seems neater that way.

    The second two sentences are acceptable, but they’re not as clear. You could say, “The event will take place from 1 Jan. until 2 Feb. 2009.

    For the list, I suggest using a colon, as follows:
    Trumpet Music Festival: 1 Jan. – 5 Jan.
    Flugelhorn Music Festival: 12 Jun 5 July

    I hope this helps.
     
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