ago vs earlier

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Madrid001

Senior Member
Spanish
Hello!

Can you please tell me which adverb I should use in this context? Ago or Earlier? Also, is there any other adverb I could use instead of any of those?

Example:

-The book is about a girl whose mom had abandoned a few years earlier...

or

-The book is about a girl whose mom had abandoned a few years ago...


Thank you for your help!
 
  • Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    Either could be correct depending context. Did her mother abandon her a few years before some other event in the context, or did she abandon her a few years before now?
     

    sound shift

    Senior Member
    English - England
    "Ago" implies "counting back from now." It doesn't fit with the tense that you have used here: the past perfect.
    "The book is about a girl whose mom had abandoned her a few years earlier" implies two past moments: (1) The moment the girl was abandoned by her mother, which occurred a few years before (2) the past moment that you are talking about.
     

    Madrid001

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    what about before?

    - The book is about a girl whose mom had abandoned a few years before...

    Does this sentence sound ok to you?
     

    Florentia52

    Modwoman in the attic
    English - United States
    You can use "before" in place of "earlier" in the sentence. Your sentence will not be correct until you provide an object for "abandoned," as both Myridon and sound shift have done. Also, without the context you still have not provided, we can't say wither "ago" or "earlier/before" is correct.
     
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