( ) than a century ago

Discussion in 'English Only' started by cheshire, Mar 23, 2007.

  1. cheshire

    cheshire Senior Member

    اليابان
    Catholic (Cat-holic, not Catholic)
    Can we substitute "later" for "less" in "The North Pole was discovered less than a century ago."?
     
  2. jessie_goody New Member

    NY - USA
    USA - English
    No, you can't. The sentence changes if you put later. Saying less makes it more recent, while saying later makes it seem less recent.
     
  3. mplsray Senior Member

    No. :cross: X was discovered later than a century ago doesn't work.
     
  4. cheshire

    cheshire Senior Member

    اليابان
    Catholic (Cat-holic, not Catholic)
    Thanks! We can't use "later" in the parenthesis below, then?

    Mozart was born ( ) than Bach.
     
  5. mrbilal87

    mrbilal87 Senior Member

    English (NAmE)
    In this case "later" is fine. What you can't use is "less", as it would imply a quantity of something.
     
  6. jessie_goody New Member

    NY - USA
    USA - English
    You can use later, but the sentence might sound a little funny.
     
  7. cheshire

    cheshire Senior Member

    اليابان
    Catholic (Cat-holic, not Catholic)
    (1) :cross: "The North Pole was discovered later than a century ago."?
    (2) :tick: Mozart was born later than Bach.
    Why is (1) wrong because the "later" mean a recent event, but (2) is correct?
     
  8. mrbilal87

    mrbilal87 Senior Member

    English (NAmE)
    I wouldn't say the first one was is wrong, but when stating sentences of that nature it's more natural to use "less" than "later." However, the second sentence changes meaning completely if you use "less" rather than later".
     

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