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    #1

    89 days old or 89 day old; which one is correct?

    Hi,
    I would like to know which alternative is better in a regular document in which a description of the age is mentioned.

    ie.
    89 days old or 89 day old?

    Thank you,
    Victor

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    #2

    Re: 89 days old or 89 day old; which one is correct?

    More context is needed.

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: 89 days old or 89 day old; which one is correct?

    Specifically, does it come immediately before a noun?

    I found an 89-day-old package of ham in my fridge.
    Don't eat that! It's at least 89 days old!

    (I'd say "3-month-old" in most cases rather than 89 days, unless each day were really that important.)
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: 89 days old or 89 day old; which one is correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    (I'd say "3-month-old" in most cases rather than 89 days, unless each day were really that important.)
    Hmm. Have I misused the subjunctive here?
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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    #5

    Re: 89 days old or 89 day old; which one is correct?

    I think the subjunctive is OK if you are in disbelief that each day could really be that important.

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    #6

    Re: 89 days old or 89 day old; which one is correct?

    unless each day was really that important.)

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    #7

    Re: 89 days old or 89 day old; which one is correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Hmm. Have I misused the subjunctive here?
    I don't think so.You have present a true hypotheical situation. I'm sure you would not have had any doubt if you had rephrased it with 'if':

    I'd say "89 days", if each day were really that important.

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    #8

    Re: 89 days old or 89 day old; which one is correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by susiedq View Post
    unless each day was really that important.
    That's fine, unless you are one of those who insist that the subjunctive be () used in such cases.

  5. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: 89 days old or 89 day old; which one is correct?

    Well, I don't insist -- it just comes naturally. I've ready many times that the subjunctive is used far more often in the US than in other English-speaking nations.

    My doubt was that it's no longer hypothetical if it IS important, but as Dave says, it expressed my own skepticism that it was.

    Sorry to derail - and thanks!
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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