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  1. vectra's Avatar
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      • Ukraine
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      • Ukraine

    • Join Date: Jun 2005
    • Posts: 288
    #1

    Gold or golden?

    Hello!
    The other day one of my young colleagues came up to me and asked whether it is OK to say a golden watch or it is better to say a gold watch.
    I told her that usually I say a gold watch and have never bothered whether it is right or wrong.
    But she offered to consult an Oxford Learner's Dictionary we have in the library in our staff room.
    The dictionary says if an item is made of gold, like a crown, it is a golden sth. That is it.
    Upon arriving home, I consulted Longman Dictionary of Common Errors by J. B. Heaton and N. D. Turton. It says that in modern use, things which are made of gold are described as gold rather than golden.
    So, a golden watch or gold watch - that is the question.

    Thank you for your time and help.

  2. Raymott's Avatar
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    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 24,104
    #2

    Re: Gold or golden?

    Quote Originally Posted by vectra View Post
    Hello!
    The other day one of my young colleagues came up to me and asked whether it is OK to say a golden watch or it is better to say a gold watch.
    I told her that usually I say a gold watch and have never bothered whether it is right or wrong.
    But she offered to consult an Oxford Learner's Dictionary we have in the library in our staff room.
    The dictionary says if an item is made of gold, like a crown, it is a golden sth. That is it.
    Upon arriving home, I consulted Longman Dictionary of Common Errors by J. B. Heaton and N. D. Turton. It says that in modern use, things which are made of gold are described as gold rather than golden.
    So, a golden watch or gold watch - that is the question.

    Thank you for your time and help.
    There's some overlap, but 'golden' is normally used for the colour.
    " ... a field of golden daffodils", "the golden arches of Macdonalds"
    It would be rare to refer to a golden watch.
    You probably won't go wrong if you use "golden" for the colour, and "gold" for the material - but expect to see exceptions.

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