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  1. #1
    murat guler is offline Newbie
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    Default Is This Sentence Acceptable?

    Hi All


    As you know, in a general question, the days of the week should be asked as "what are the days of the week?"


    Is this also acceptable.....?


    "What are the days of a week?"


    Thanks

  2. #2
    birdeen's call is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Is This Sentence Acceptable?

    I can't convincingly argue that it's incorrect, but I wouldn't use it. I understand you want to ask a question to which the correct answer is

    "Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday."

    In this case, I would think about week as a unique object: a unit of time consisting of unique "days": Monday, Tuesday, etc.

    However, I would say

    How many centimeters are there in a meter?

    I'm not sure why. The difference seems to be that the parts of a meter (the centimeters) are not thought to be uniquely determined -- no one (I think) thinks about the first and the fifty-second centimeter of a meter, though it's possible. I don't quite see however how it explains the indefinite article.

  3. #3
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Is This Sentence Acceptable?

    Quote Originally Posted by birdeen's call View Post
    I can't convincingly argue that it's incorrect, but I wouldn't use it. I understand you want to ask a question to which the correct answer is

    "Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday."

    In this case, I would think about week as a unique object: a unit of time consisting of unique "days": Monday, Tuesday, etc.

    However, I would say

    How many centimeters are in a meter?

    I'm not sure why.
    By the same token though, we would say "How many days in a week?" or "How many days are in a week?" or "How many days are there in a week?"

    How many months are there in a year?
    What are the names of the months of the year?

    How many days are there in a week?
    What are the [names of the] days of the week?
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  4. #4
    birdeen's call is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Is This Sentence Acceptable?

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    By the same token though, we would say "How many days in a week?" or "How many days are in a week?" or "How many days are there in a week?"

    How many months are there in a year?
    What are the names of the months of the year?

    How many days are there in a week?
    What are the [names of the] days of the week?
    Right! I didn't think it through. I'm still not sure why it works this way though!

  5. #5
    billmcd is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Is This Sentence Acceptable?

    Quote Originally Posted by murat guler View Post
    Hi All


    As you know, in a general question, the days of the week should be asked as "what are the days of the week?"


    Is this also acceptable.....?


    "What are the days of a week?" Not the typical way to ask this question. In fact, you should expect the answer to the use of "a" in this case to be "seven".


    Thanks
    b.

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