for a moment vs for a while

bonbon2023

Senior Member
Korean(south)
There's a sentence in En-Kr OALD(English-Korean Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary):"Can you take the baby for a moment?"
The translation of 'for a moment' is very similar to 'for a while'. I saw some structures having 'for a while' in past tense before. Can I interchange 'for a moment' with 'for a while' in sentences having present interrogative structure as in "Can you take the baby for a moment?"
 
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  • Biffo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    No. I interpret the first to mean "for a few seconds" whereas "for a while" could mean anything from half an hour to several days.

    Examples

    Could you hold the baby for a moment while I get the bottle from the kitchen.

    "Mother, could you have the baby for a while, whilst I /go to the shops/go on holiday/?"
     
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