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  1. keannu's Avatar
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    #1

    barely took 20 minutes

    "barely" is hard to interprete, in this case it means "almost less than 20 minutes", a little bit positive meaning, but as in "There was barely any smell", it means "almost no", a negative meaning. How do you tell the difference?

    st94)Today I participated in community service work in a garden area. What was great to see there was that most of the students barely took 20 minutes to finish their lunch....

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: barely took 20 minutes

    Quote Originally Posted by keannu View Post
    How do you tell the difference?
    Context

  3. Route21's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: barely took 20 minutes

    "Barely" in both contexts translates as "hardly".

    It took hardly/barely 20 minutes.
    There was hardly/barely any smell.

    Hope this helps
    Regards
    R21

  4. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: barely took 20 minutes

    Quote Originally Posted by keannu View Post
    "Barely" is hard to interpret, in this case it means "almost less than 20 minutes", a little bit positive meaning ...
    "Barely" doesn't mean "almost less than" anything. I find "almost less than" rather unusual and I can't think of many ways to use it.

    It barely takes twenty minutes = It takes very nearly twenty minutes, maybe nineteen minutes and thirty seconds.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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