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    • Join Date: May 2008
    • Posts: 1,157
    #1

    at least


    Hello.

    http://tinyurl.com/m99wjw
    < at least >
    not less than a specified amount, level, etc.
    ▪ At least once a year, we visit our grandparents.
    ▪ We meet at least once a month. = We meet once a month at least.
    ▪ You must be at least 21 years of age to enter.
    ▪ He was at least six feet tall.
    ▪ He must have at least 300 CDs!

    "At least once a month" and "once a month at least" are interchangeable, aren't they?
    Can I say "six feet tall at least" instead of "at least six feet tall," and "300 CDs at least" in place of "at least 300 CDs"?

    Thank you.
    Last edited by Daruma; 04-Sep-2009 at 01:43.


    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 2,036
    #2

    Wink Re: at least

    Quote Originally Posted by Daruma View Post

    Hello.

    Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary
    < at least >
    not less than a specified amount, level, etc.
    ▪ At least once a year, we visit our grandparents.
    ▪ We meet at least once a month. = We meet once a month at least.
    ▪ You must be at least 21 years of age to enter.
    ▪ He was at least six feet tall.
    ▪ He must have at least 300 CDs!

    "At least once a month" and "once a month at least" are interchangeable, aren't they?
    Can I say "six feet tall at least" instead of "at least six feet tall," and "300 CDs at least" in place of "at least 300 CDs"?

    Thank you.

    Yes, you can. The second version of each phrase with "at least" at the end would be the least common. However, when it comes to adverbials and prepositional phrases in conversational English, and spoken discourse in general, word order is flexible.

    Some people would disagree with this. However, to tell ELLs that they should not use phrases such as the ones you are asking about is subjecting them to limitations that native speakers do not impose upon themselves.

    With adverbials and prepositional phrases it's good to keep in mind, in a very general way, that there is typical word order and less typical word order. Of course, it is best to learn and familiarize yourself with typical and usual word order first. If you are in the habit of always using word order that is not typical or usual, then it could end up sounding like there is transference from your first language, or it just wouldn't sound natural.

    Do you know what I mean?

    Last edited by PROESL; 04-Sep-2009 at 02:39.


    • Join Date: May 2008
    • Posts: 1,157
    #3

    Re: at least

    Yes, I do, PROESL. Thank you for the response. I'll always use the first version.

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