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    #1

    weeks' holiday

    Dear teachers,

    I am confused about this question : "How many weeks' holiday a year do you get?" Does it mean that "How many weeks a year do you go on holiday?" Why is there a possessive "weeks' holiday" here?

    Thank you very much!

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    #2

    Re: weeks' holiday

    It's a mistake. It should be simply "how many weeks?" No possessive.

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: weeks' holiday

    Maybe so in Am Eng. In Br Eng it is not only fine but preferable. You are talking about a vacation with a duration of two weeks.

    b

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    #4

    Re: weeks' holiday

    We would ask how many weeks of vacation. No possessive.

    I am not sure I understand that use. The holiday does not belong to the week. The week is a unit of measure.

    Would you ask "how many dollars' salary do you get?"

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: weeks' holiday

    Quote Originally Posted by SoothingDave View Post
    ...

    Would you ask "how many dollars' salary do you get?"
    Well that's an odd case; the natural question is 'what do you earn?'

    But we do say things like 'How many [days of|days'] remission/holiday do you get?'

    b

  3. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: weeks' holiday

    I am on the fence regarding the apostrophe - I can see an argument for both. However, in answer to the original question, it is not asking how many weeks a year you actually go on holiday. It is asking how many weeks of holiday entitlement you get at your job.

    In my previous job, I was entitled to six weeks plus about 12 extra public holiday days. In my current job, I get 104 hours a year. Those are my entitlements - the maximum number of weeks/hours I can take off. I don't necessarily go on holiday for all that time. Sometimes, I don't even take my full entitlement and I carry some of it forward to the following year.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  4. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: weeks' holiday

    Do we agree that we'd say "I gave one week's notice before I quit my job" and "I gave two weeks' notice before..."?
    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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