<Carry/Go>straight on for about a two mile till you arriv at

Discussion in 'English Only' started by a cooperator, Sep 16, 2011.

  1. How do I say "straight on for about a two mile till you arrive at a crossroad"?
     
  2. Glenfarclas Senior Member

    Chicago
    English (American)
    Pretty much like this. :)
     
  3. I can't say "straight on for about a two-mile until you arrive at a crossroad"? If yes then why I can say "That turned into a five-year long endeavor, as Serkis actually created the character's movement and expressions".
     
  4. Glenfarclas Senior Member

    Chicago
    English (American)
    There is no such thing as "a two-mile." It is just "for two miles." And please note that in the second example you are missing a hyphen, which may be causing you to parse it incorrectly. It should be "a {five-year-long} endeavor", not "a {five-year} {long endeavor}".

    I also noticed that you put the word "until" in green. Is that what you're asking about? "Until" is completely right in your sentence about directions, but I don't see how it relates to the second example about Andy Serkis.
     
  5. I can't say "straight on for about a two-mile- distance until you arrive at a crossroad"?
     
  6. Glenfarclas Senior Member

    Chicago
    English (American)
    That wouldn't sound very good. "Straight on for a distance of about two miles" or "Straight on for about two miles" would work.
     
  7. I am so afraid to repeat my question that is as follows:Why can't I say "straight on for about a two-mile-distance until you arrive at a crossroad"? Especially, since that "I stayed in a five -star-hotel" is correct.
     
  8. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    Glen has already said it wouldn't sound good! It is grammatically correct but it is not something a native speaker would ever say. It would not be idiomatic, and he has provided good alternatives...
    "Colourless green dreams sleep furiously" is a famous example of something that is grammatically correct and uses English words but that doesn't mean it's something a native speaker would say.
     
  9. I know that convert the the question to another. But please confirm my last question.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2011
  10. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    Sorry - I don't understand what this means. We can answer a question but we cannot confirm one.

    If you are referring to
    then I already answered it with the following sentence above in post 8
    Could you tell us what is it that you are now asking for?
     
  11. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    I have heard "Go straight on for about a two-mile stretch until you reach a crossroad." "Distance" doesn't sound natural to me, but "stretch" does. It's a colloquial, casual way of saying it and implies that it may be more or less than two miles but it "feels" like two miles.

    There just isn't a reason to say "a two-mile (noun)" when giving directions, usually, so it doesn't sound like the typical thing to say.
     
  12. Yes, of course, my question is in short as follows:I have heard that the first number is usually singular. As a result, I can say either "a 12-month guarantee" or "a twelve-month guarantee". So I didn't see any hyphen between a "month" and a "guarantee". Why?
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2011
  13. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    Again, I'm confused!
    What does this have to do with going two miles to a crossroad?
    This question about guarantees and hyphens is a new one and should be a new thread, I think.
     
  14. The relation between my final question and "two miles to a crossroad" is why I should use hyphen between a "mile" and " distance" although we didn't use the hyphen in these examples"a 12-month guarantee" or "a twelve-month guarantee". So I didn't see any hyphen between a "month" and a "guarantee".?
     
  15. Glenfarclas Senior Member

    Chicago
    English (American)
    You should not use a hyphen between "mile" and "distance." There is no good reason to write "a two-mile distance" in the first place, but it's definitely not "a two-mile-distance."
     
  16. papakapp Senior Member

    English - NW US

    That is perfectly fine.
    "go for a two-miles" would be wrong because there are two of them
    "go for a two-mile distance" is fine because there is one of those.
    "go for some two-miles" would also be fine, but it is rather rare to phrase it like that.
     
  17. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    The original question in this thread is
    That was answered but now, the question seems to be concerned with "Hyphenated compound adjectives" (That is a link to a discussion on the subject. Below is a quote which answers your new question).

    Examples might be "a twelve month guarantee" or "a two mile walk" where the lack of a hyphen does not lead to ambiguity. If you write "a two mile long walk" this could have more than one meaning, so hyphen placement should be done judiciously :D
     
  18. But why did you say in your fourth post as follows:It should be "a {five-year-long} endeavor", not "a {five-year} {long endeavor}"?
     
  19. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    Did you study the link on hyphenated compound adjectives in post#17?

    If you write "a two?mile?long?walk five?year?long?endeavor" (where the ? indicates a "possible hyphen placement") this could have more than one meaning, so hyphen placement should be done judiciously. In this example the adjective is "five-year-long" and it modifies "endeavor".
     
  20. Glenfarclas Senior Member

    Chicago
    English (American)
    The issue is whether the descriptive phrase should be hyphenated. But the descriptive phrase is never connected to the noun itself with a hyphen: thus "He is an old man" and "He is a seventy-year-old man" -- and, for people who like to omit hyphens when there is little risk of confusion, "He is a seventy year old man" -- but never "He is an old-man" or "He is a seventy-year-old-man."

    The descriptive phrase in "five_year_long_endeavor" is "five-year-long," and the noun itself, which is being described, is "endeavor." That is why the correct hyphenation is "five-year-long endeavor." I hope you now see why it could only be "two-mile distance" (or "two mile distance," if you prefer to leave the hyphen out altogether), and not "two-mile-distance."

    None of that makes "Go straight on for about a two-mile distance" into natural-sounding English, though. :)
     
  21. But Can I say""That turned into five-year-long endeavors, as Serkis actually created the character's movement and expressions".
     
  22. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    Not quite! Unless you want to describe several separate endeavours, each of which was five years long!

    If the work took five years, we would usually refer to it as one endeavour, so it would be
    "That turned into a five-year-long endeavor, as Serkis actually c..." where "five-year-long" is the compound hyphenated adjective.
     
  23. Basing on your speech I can say either "I always stay in a five-star hotel." or " I always stay in five-star hotels. "
     
  24. grubble

    grubble Senior Member

    South of England, UK
    British English
    Returning to the original question, here is the explanation of why it is incorrect.

    "a" means "one" !!!!!!!!!!!

    You can say

    "straight on for about a mile until you arrive at a crossroad" :tick: ("a mile" means "one mile")

    or

    "straight on for about two miles until you arrive at a crossroad" :tick:

    but you cannot say

    "straight on for about one two mile until you arrive at a crossroad" :cross: (You must choose between one and two, you cannot have both)
     
  25. Yes please but I need to an answer ofmy question"Can say either "I always stay in a five-star hotel." or " I always stay in five-star hotels. "?
     
  26. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    Indeed you can say either.
     
  27. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    Please try to keep each thread to a single topic. This question is not the one that is the subject of the thread! You should not change topics during the discussion of the first one.
     
  28. Yes, I know and I am so afraid but please I don't want to initiate a new thread because I have approached to end of the topic, so I don't want to distract the mentioned ideas by initiating another thread. As a result, please answer my last question.
     
  29. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    I answered it already - please go back and (re- ?) read post #26
     
  30. Can I say "straight on for about two miles until you arrive at/ get to/ come to a crossroad"?
     
  31. Glenfarclas Senior Member

    Chicago
    English (American)
    Yes, as I indicated in post #6. And you can use whichever of "arrive at," "get to," or "come to" you prefer.
     
  32. Yes but you indicated in post #6.That wouldn't sound very good. Wouldn't "straight on for about two miles until you arrive at/ get to/ come to a crossroad" sound very good" ?
     
  33. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    The version Glen said didn't sound so good is the one in red. You have now changed it to the one in green bold that was suggested by Glen (the one with miles) - that's why he says it's OK :D
     
  34. Glenfarclas Senior Member

    Chicago
    English (American)
    :thumbsup: !
     

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