at sleep

Pidginboy

Senior Member
India-Local dialect
"Senior citezens at sleep from 2.00 to 5.00 p.m. don't disturb them " reads a board on a home near my home.

Is 'at sleep' correctly used?
 
  • Elwintee

    Senior Member
    England English
    "Senior citezens at sleep from 2.00 to 5.00 p.m. don't disturb them " reads a board on a home near my home.

    Is 'at sleep' correctly used?
    'at sleep' is not colloquial English, in my opinion. People are either asleep or sleeping. I would therefore say:
    "Senior citizens are asleep / are sleeping from 2.00 to 5.00 pm". 'At' can be used in a phrase such as 'he is at rest' - but this means, to put it baldly, that he is dead.
     

    entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    I agree it's unnatural. It looks like a confusion between asleep and the various states one can be at: at rest, at work, at play.
     

    b1947420

    Senior Member
    British English
    'at sleep' is not colloquial English, in my opinion. People are either asleep or sleeping. I would therefore say:
    "Senior citizens are asleep / are sleeping from 2.00 to 5.00 pm". 'At' can be used in a phrase such as 'he is at rest' - but this means, to put it baldly, that he is dead.
    Do you think that "citizens at sleep" is any different to "men working"? (In terms of English useage).
    I have seen the latter many times on road side posters for example.
     
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    Elwintee

    Senior Member
    England English
    Do you think that "citizes at sleep" is any different to "men working"? (In terms of English useage).
    I have seen the latter many times on road side posters for example.
    I am not sure of the point you are making, but we do commonly say 'at work' ('men are at work / at play'), while we do not say 'men are at sleep'. That is just a matter of English usage.
     

    b1947420

    Senior Member
    British English
    I am not sure of the point you are making, but we do commonly say 'at work' ('men are at work / at play'), while we do not say 'men are at sleep'. That is just a matter of English usage.
    My point is that in my opinion the expression "at sleep" is as colloquial as "at work" this being just another example of a similar useage.
     

    Elwintee

    Senior Member
    England English
    My point is that in my opinion the expression "at sleep" is as colloquial as "at work" this being just another example of a similar useage.

    Sorry, I don't get what you mean. 'Colloquial' means 'used in common conversation', and as a native BE speaker I have never heard the phrase 'at sleep' (even from foreigners/learners) in the whole of my life.
     

    sevillana23

    Senior Member
    English
    Though - in my opinion and as a native English speaker - I don't think it's particularly grammatically correct to say "at sleep", I have heard it used before...It may be a regional colloquialism.
     

    Elwintee

    Senior Member
    England English
    Though - in my opinion and as a native English speaker - I don't think it's particularly grammatically correct to say "at sleep", I have heard it used before...It may be a regional colloquialism.[/QUOTE

    You may well be right, I recognise that there are many varieties of English. However, I would be surprised if there was that much difference between the English spoken in Lincoln (my latest interlocutor's area) and London (my area). I should really like to know if others have met 'at sleep'.
     

    b1947420

    Senior Member
    British English
    Sorry, I don't get what you mean. 'Colloquial' means 'used in common conversation', and as a native BE speaker I have never heard the phrase 'at sleep' (even from foreigners/learners) in the whole of my life.
    I understand exactly what colloquial means.

    In post #6 you have accepted that "at work" (preposition + noun) is in common useage so I am saying that "at sleep" is a similar useage and perfectly acceptable, in my opinion ofcourse.
    Another example may be when we set the computer to "sleep mode" how do we describe the status of the computer under these circumstances? -- It is "at sleep" (preposition + noun) or "asleep" (verb)

    I'm sorry but I can't make my point any clearer.
     
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