Feet, inches / pounds, ounces

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frogboxer

Junior Member
Aside from abbreviating height and weight (e.g. 5lb 2oz and 6ft 10in tall), I'd like to know if you agree with the way these are written. Some authorities use comma separators between 'feet' and 'inches', 'pounds' and 'ounces'. (E.g. 8 pounds, 5 ounces; an 8-pound, 5-ounce baby - the same with height. I think this looks horrendous because you're separating a single unit of measurement with commas.)

Do you agree with the punctuation in the examples below?

•Hal is 6 feet 5 inches tall.
•Hal is a 6-foot 5-inch man.
(Not: a 6-foot-5-inch man)

•The newborn weighed 9 pounds 7 ounces.
•a 9-pound 7-ounce newborn
(Not: a 9-pound-7-ounce newborn)

Thank you.

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
I've never seen them separated with commas. I would use a number with an abbreviation, and the word in full with the weight in full.

The baby weighed 8lb 5oz.
She had an eight-pound five-ounce baby girl.

We normally say "He's six-foot five". We don't usually include "inches" or say "He's a [height] man".

frogboxer

Junior Member
But we could say: "He's a 6-foot 5-inch basketball player", no?

No hyphen between the words 'foot' and '5', correct? Same logic as in '8-pound 5-ounce baby', correct?

Thanks

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
But we could say: "He's a 6-foot 5-inch basketball player", no?

No hyphen between the words 'foot' and '5', correct? Same logic as in '8-pound 5-ounce baby', correct?

Thanks

No hyphen between "foot" and "5", I agree. However, I would say "He's a six-foot five basketball player". As I said, in that kind of construction, we don't usually bother mentioning "inches". It's taken as read that if you start someone's height in feet then the next number will refer to inches.

frogboxer

Junior Member
Thanks - but I think 'a six-foot five basketball player' needs a hyphen after the word 'foot'. It's a compound modifier before the noun 'basketball player', no?

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