2

For example:

It might take one and half an hour to do this.

Is this correct?

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  • 5
    No, it's not. It might take one and a half hours to do it. Commented Mar 27, 2017 at 14:07
  • It might, if was an answer to something like "How many people and how long might it take to change a fuse on this contraption?" The answer you've highlighted could do with a comma after the word one, though.
    – Lawrence
    Commented Mar 27, 2017 at 16:20
  • Related: “an hour and a half” or “one and a half hours”
    – Laurel
    Commented Mar 27, 2017 at 16:21
  • Correct in what sense? From the functional point of view, it's absolutely correct if the speaker gets his message across with no misunderstanding. It is pretty hard to misunderstood "one and half an hour", and Language is actually about communicating, not constructing grammatically correct utterances, however helpful they are–as a subsidiary notion . Quite a few of our utterances are not complete sentences. I mention this, because most grammars take the complete sentence as the basic building block to "learning" English. Which, of, course, they're not. Commented Mar 27, 2017 at 16:52
  • However, learning how natives speak improves comprehensibility. Commented Mar 27, 2017 at 16:56

1 Answer 1

1

In English, singular is to be used when there is one and only one subject. Thus, you should say

It might take one and a half hours to do this.

Note that this rule varies from a language to the other. In French for example, singular is to be used when there is less than two subjects. In French, you would say:

Il faut une heure et demi pour faire ceci.

The word heure (the French for hour) is singular here.

But this isn't a good example, because of the phrase "une heure et demi", which means "an hour and a half". Here's a better one:

He is 1.78 meters tall.

Il mesure 1.78 mètre.

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  • 2
    In English one/an hour and a half is also used.
    – Jim
    Commented Mar 27, 2017 at 14:40
  • Oh, right. I edited the answer to it clearer. Commented Mar 27, 2017 at 15:25

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