three-month journey/ three months' journey

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HocusPocus93

Senior Member
Italiano- Italia
Hello,
what's the difference between three-month journey/ three months' journey?
I think that the first indicates a journey of three months, the second indicates three months of journey (not all in one time). Am I right?
Thanks
 
  • Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    They both mean the same thing: a journey of three months. I would use "a three-month journey."

    He's on two weeks' holiday.
    He's on a two-week holiday.
     

    HocusPocus93

    Senior Member
    Italiano- Italia
    So is it better to use the singular form (three-month) with the hyphen? There's no way to express the second idea I had?
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    He's on a three months' journey.

    I just don't like it as much (actually, I would never use it, but others might).
     

    colognial

    Senior Member
    Persian
    Hi, HocusPocus93. This is just a guess on my part, so don't go round thinking it's necessarily correct!

    I think that three months' journey (not a three months' journey, which I believe is incorrect), means three months' worth of journeying. It's a way of showing that the speaker is measuring the action of journeying in units of time.

    Another example I can think of is when someone says to you, the pub is only 5 minutes' walk from here, which to my way of thinking implies that the speaker is measuring the distance in terms of the time that it would take me to walk down to the pub.

    Three-month-long journey, on the other hand, is a phrase consisting of an adjective and a noun.
     
    Last edited:

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    I think that three months' journey (not a three months' journey, which I believe is incorrect) ...
    Perhaps that's why I'm finding it odd. Obviously, the article is not use in "He's on two weeks' holiday." But we wouldn't say "He's on three months' journey."
     
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