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  1. #1
    altiwife is offline Junior Member
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    with and without "first"

    Have a look at sentence #1.
    You'll have to disable the alarm system before you enter the house.
    Now take a look at sentence #2.
    You'll have to disable the alarm system first before you enter the house.

    Refering to my native language German sentence #2 is absolutely natural and commonly used.
    What about the usage of "first" in English? Does it sound natural? Is it often used this way?

  2. #2
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    teechar is offline Moderator
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    Re: with and without "first"

    It's fine. I'm more likely to use "before going into the house" or "before you go into the house" in that sentence.

  3. #3
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    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Re: with and without "first"

    I find the use of "first before" unnatural.

    You have to disable the alarm before you enter the house.
    If you want to enter the house, you'll have to disable the alarm first.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  4. #4
    SoothingDave is offline VIP Member
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    Re: with and without "first"

    The "first" is redundant, but it is natural to me. For emphasis, anyway. I don't find it unnatural.

  5. #5
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    teechar is offline Moderator
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    Re: with and without "first"

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    I find the use of "first before" unnatural.
    I'm surprised!

    http://fraze.it/n_search.jsp?q=%22first+before%22&l=0

  6. #6
    bubbha is offline Senior Member
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    Re: with and without "first"

    The "first" and "before" are separate; it's not a two-word term.

    It's "You'll have to disable the alarm system first" + "before you enter the house".
    NOT A TEACHER. Translator and editor, and I hold a TESOL certificate. Native speaker of American English (West Coast)

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