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  1. Key Member
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    #1

    Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

    Hi teachers.

    I wonder if my sentences are natural.

    1)Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.
    2) She should wear a thinner shirt in summer.

  2. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverobama View Post
    Hi teachers.

    I wonder if my sentences are natural.

    1)Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.
    2) She should wear a thinner shirt in summer.
    I don't think you need an apostrophe with "years."

    The second is fine. If you specifically mean a woman's shirt, you can also say "blouse" or "top." (You can look up exact definitions.)
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  3. Key Member
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    #3

    Re: Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Bernstein View Post
    I don't think you need an apostrophe with "years."
    I think the first one is not good. How about my new attempt, CB.

    Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to a five-year imprisonment.

    Or as you have said, this one is better.

    Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years imprisonment.

  4. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

    The apostrophe is required in "five years' imprisonment". It's not needed in "five years in prison".
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  5. Key Member
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    #5

    Re: Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

    So, in AmE, the apostrophe is not needed while in BrE, it's needed. Am I right?

    Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years imprisonment.
    Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

    They are both good. Am I right?

  6. jutfrank's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

    Strictly speaking, the apostrophe is required in all varieties of English. This has nothing to do with British or American English, but to grammar. You can understand the apostrophe as replacing the word of.

  7. Moderator
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    #7

    Re: Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverobama View Post
    Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years imprisonment.
    You can tell the whole story with no additional syllables like this:

    Silver was arrested, tried, convicted, and sentenced to five years imprisonment.
    I am not a teacher.

  8. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: Silver was arrested and subsequently sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    The apostrophe is required in "five years' imprisonment". It's not needed in "five years in prison".
    You're right. Thanks!

    I'll go back and see if I can delete. . . .

    Nope.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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