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Thread: during or by

  1. #1
    jasonlulu_2000 is offline Senior Member
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    Default during or by

    —When did it begin to snow?
    —It started by the night.

    Is the underlined part a natural collocation? I think "It started during the night" would be better.

    Am I right?

    Thanks!

    Jason


  2. #2
    MikeNewYork's Avatar
    MikeNewYork is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: during or by

    Quote Originally Posted by jasonlulu_2000 View Post
    —When did it begin to snow?
    —It started by the night.

    Is the underlined part a natural collocation? I think "It started during the night" would be better.

    Am I right?

    Thanks!

    Jason

    You are correct!

  3. #3
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: during or by

    Quote Originally Posted by jasonlulu_2000 View Post
    —When did it begin to snow?
    —It started by the night.

    Is the underlined part a natural collocation? I think "It started during the night" would be better.

    Am I right?

    Thanks!

    Jason

    It depends on when the snow started. 'By' usually means 'before', as in "Please do it by Tuesday."
    "It started by the night", although it's not a good sentence, could mean "It was snowing before night fell."
    "It started during the night" is grammatical; but it's only better if that's your meaning.

  4. #4
    philo2009 is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: during or by

    I think 'by' here would require the past perfect,

    It had started by night(fall).

  5. #5
    SoothingDave is online now VIP Member
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    Default Re: during or by

    "It started overnight" is an option as well. Depending on your exact meaning.

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