fraction of a second too long


Hey. Take a look at it:

He decided not to look at them for that single fraction of a second too long

What does this sentence mean? And can you tell me what "Second too long" means and how it's used?

Thanks in advace!
  • Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    It says "a fraction (of a second) too long."
    If you didn't look at him for 1 second, he may not notice it, but if you didn't look at him for 1.1 seconds, he will notice. That extra fraction of a second makes the time too long.


    Senior Member
    USA - English
    You are dividing the sentence incorrectly. It isn't "second too long". It is [a fraction of a second][too long].

    A fraction of a second is an extremely short period of time. It is not a full second (that is, 1/60th of a minute), but only a fraction of a second.

    "Too long" here has its usual meaning.



    Senior Member
    USA - English

    A period of time may be insufficiently long, or the appropriate length, or excessively long:

    Insufficiently long: The bread is not very good, because I did not bake it long enough.
    Insufficiently long: One day is not long enough to paint this whole house.
    Excessively long: Because of the traffic, our trip to the airport took too long: by the time we got there, our flight had left.
    Excessively long: The fugitive stayed at his mother's house for a day too long, and as a result he was captured there by the police.
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