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    #1

    I have not seen Sam for years.

    Is there any difference in meaning between the following sentences?
    1. I have not seen Sam for years.
    2. I have not seen Sam in years.

    Which of the following sentences is correct?
    3. This is one of the best I have seen for years.
    4. This is one of the best I have seen in years.

    In what ways does the phrase "for years" differ from "in years"?

    Thanks a lot.

  1. Raymott's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: I have not seen Sam for years.

    They mean the same to me.

  2. Piscean's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: I have not seen Sam for years.

    This speaker of BrE regards 'in' as more informal.

  3. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: I have not seen Sam for years.

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Chung View Post
    Is there any difference
    Would it be more natural to use 'a' instead of 'any' above?

  4. Piscean's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: I have not seen Sam for years.

    'a' is OK, but no more natural, in my opinion.

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    #6

    Re: I have not seen Sam for years.

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Hello, Mr. Chung:

    Many years ago, I read a sentence in a British publication that said something like this:

    "The Times [newspaper in the United Kingdom] has been banned in the country of [deleted by me]. It is the first time for three years that it has been banned in [ ]."

    I had to stop reading, for I was so shocked.

    Here in the United States, I am pretty sure that many (most?) people would have used in.

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    #7

    Re: I have not seen Sam for years.

    It's perfectly natural in British English.

  5. Piscean's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: I have not seen Sam for years.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheParser View Post
    I had to stop reading, for I was so shocked.
    Perhaps it is the disreputable life I have led, but it takes more than an apparently incorrect preposition to shock me these days.

  6. Skrej's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: I have not seen Sam for years.

    They both work equally well for me in AmE as well, and I alternate between both of them in my own speech.

  7. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: I have not seen Sam for years.

    Piscean, you BrE speakers seem to have some unwritten code about formal and informal. Care to share?

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