Differences between "tenth century" and "tenth-century".

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IBNGABIROL

Senior Member
Español
Hi! I've seen these two expressions and I don't really understand the difference between them.

1) The church of the tenth century.
2) The tenth-century church.

Is there a difference between "tenth century" and "tenth-century"?

Thank you.
 
  • IBNGABIROL

    Senior Member
    Español
    Where? In what context?
    Just reading online. For example,

    "A Reconstruction of the Tenth-Century Church of St. Cyriacus in Gernrode"

    and

    "The small Romanesque church of the tenth century, known as the Basse Œuvre, much restored, still occupies the site destined for the nave".

    There are hundred of examples of this online.
     

    Glenfarclas

    Senior Member
    English (American)
    The meaning is the same, but which version is grammatically correct or stylistically preferable may depend on the context.
     

    Hildy1

    Senior Member
    English - US and Canada
    In "tenth century", if "century" is used as a noun, there is no hyphen.
    This church was built in the tenth century.

    If the combination "tenth-century" is used as an adjective before a noun, there is a hyphen.
    This is a tenth-century church.
    The tenth-century church was in ruins.
     

    IBNGABIROL

    Senior Member
    Español
    In "tenth century", if "century" is used as a noun, there is no hyphen.
    This church was built in the tenth century.

    If the combination "tenth-century" is used as an adjective before a noun, there is a hyphen.
    This is a tenth-century church.
    The tenth-century church was in ruins.
    Thank you very much!
     

    Hermione Golightly

    Senior Member
    British English
    "... of the tenth century" is a perfectly normal adjective+noun formation.
    tenth-century is a perfectly normal combination adjective, adjective+noun which is separated by a hyphen. There a re numerous examples as it's a common feature of English. Note that the plural 's' disappears from the noun in the adjectival phrase, even if the following noun is plural.

    two- or three-mile walks
    a walk of two miles
    a two-mile walk
     
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