Seven minutes is/are enough?

  • panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    In this context seven minutes is not seven distinct, separate minutes. It is a single period of time, lasting seven minutes.
    Five years is too long.
    Six months is long enough.
    I suppose in each case you could assume an unstated "a period of" before the time statement.
     

    timpeac

    Senior Member
    English (England)
    I suppose in each case you could assume an unstated "a period of" before the time statement.
    Yes - I think that's the way to view it too. You can extend it to many situations:

    (A sum of) five pounds is expensive for that.
    (A reply of) "many people" is no answer.
    (An amount of) three pinches of salt is too much.
    (A punishment of) thirty lashes is too harsh.
     
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