over 18 - from 18 or 19?

orcinus

New Member
Korea, Republic of / Korean
Hi, :)

I had a listening mock test and
I was put in an agony :D

Here is part of the script:
(A man was consuling a lady at library about joining a libarary and the lady went:)
"Are you over 18? That's our minimum age."

Question: Minimum joining age?
Answer: 18 years.

For a split second, I was between 18 and 19.
Surely, you mean 'older than 18' by 'over 18', don't you?
What a confusion~

What is your take?

Thanks always.
 
  • Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I'm not so sure about what has been said so far.
    Surely the common expression "aged 18 or over" implies that those aged 18 are not in the "over 18" group.
    Surely there aren't two groups. People say aged 18 or over to be clear that people aged 18 are included. If you put over 18, some would wonder if 18-year-olds were over 18. I think the expression has evolved to avoid ambiguity.
     

    liliput

    Senior Member
    U.K. English
    I'm not so sure about what has been said so far.
    Surely the common expression "aged 18 or over" implies that those aged 18 are not in the "over 18" group.
    I think "over 18" is much more common. You have to be over 18 to legally buy alcohol in the UK, if you have ID that proves that you have passed your eighteenth birthday, then you can buy alcohol. The expression just means that you can't be less than eighteen. It's more concise than "aged 18 or over", although obviously a little more open to misinterpretation.
    With regard to the original post, the speaker says "Are you over 18? That's our minimum age." This means that 18 is the minimum age ("over 18" is not a specific age).
     
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