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  1. Member
    Student or Learner
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      • Native Language:
      • French
      • Home Country:
      • France
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Jul 2004
    • Posts: 296
    #1

    hasn't been four hours

    Can one say
    a. It hasn't been four hours that I have been waiting here. It has been three hours.
    b. It hasn't been four hours that I have been waiting here. It has been five hours.


    c. It hasn't been four years that I have lived in this house. It has been three.
    d. It hasn't been four years that I have lived in this house. It has been five.
    ?


    Many thanks.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
    Moderator
    English Teacher
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      • British English
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      • UK
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      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 46,960
    #2

    Re: hasn't been four hours

    They work if someone else has just suggested that the first part of the sentence is true. In that case, I would remove the extraneous "that I have been waiting here".

    - I can't believe you haven't been seen yet. You've been waiting four hours!
    - It hasn't been four hours. It's been three.

    - Haven't you decorated the bedroom yet. It's been four years since you moved in.
    - It hasn't been four years. It's been five! I'll get around to the decorating eventually.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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