2

I'm new so please excuse if I'm asking something that had been many times before. I'm a foreigner living in UK, who loves English language so I strive for perfect use every time.

Sometimes people ask me how long I have been in this country. I like to round the number of years to the month in which I came, which was October. Therefore if someone asked me today I would have said:

I will have been 7 years in the country this October.

or if today was sometime in December I would have said

Last October I have been 7 years in the country.

So simple question: are these forms correct? Or should I just do the simple "I will be 7 years here this October"?

  • I'd say "in this country 7 years" rather than "7 years in the country", but the verb tense is fine, whereas "I will be" is incorrect. – Peter Shor Aug 27 '12 at 12:16
  • -1 Lacks research. Question is too simple: voting to close GR. – MetaEd Aug 27 '12 at 15:54
  • @meta: I don't think OP knows anything about research. :) – Noah Aug 27 '12 at 18:39
3

"I will have been 7 years in the country this October"

...is fine, but I'd rejig it a bit, so:

"I will have been in the country seven years this October".

For the second, you could say:

"Last October was the start of my eighth year in the country".

  • No, you could say 'Last October was the start of my eighth year here' if that was the seventh anniversary of arrival. – TimLymington Aug 27 '12 at 13:16
  • Thanks for the comment. Even if my maths was a bit skewiff, was the English usage correct? I thought that was what we were here to establish. – charles.abcam Aug 27 '12 at 14:15
  • Yes, though I think here (or there as appropriate) sounds more natural: I thought that was what I had said. (And is that really the current spelling of skew-whiff? You learn something every day.) – TimLymington Aug 27 '12 at 14:25
5

How about:

This October, I will have been in the country for 7 years.

and

As of last October, I had been in the country for 7 years.

  • 1
    This is the most natural-sounding rephrasing, except I'd make one tiny modification to the second one: "As of last October, I have been in the country for 7 years." (Because you presumably haven't left.) – Marthaª Aug 27 '12 at 16:35
  • Ah yes - in-advertant use of the pluperfect... well spotted! – Andrew Aug 27 '12 at 17:42
3

You'll have to decide between sounding natural and 'using perfect English', Tomasz.

Very few natives would give a response beyond "Seven years," Seven years or so," "About seven years," or "About seven years now."

Of course, logically, natives couldn't actually answer this particular question: it would have to be: "How long have you lived in Yorkshire?"

  • 2
    I think in the UK the most "natural" response, bearing in mind OP's wish to round to the nearest year, would be "Seven years come October". Regardless of whether or not the "I will have been" and "in this country" components are present. – FumbleFingers Aug 27 '12 at 16:34
  • @FumbleFingers: or it will be seven years this October. – Noah Aug 28 '12 at 2:58
  • Thank you for you help. I really like the "come October" approach. I think I will stick to that. – TomaszRykala Aug 29 '12 at 13:18
1

So simple question: are these forms correct? Or should I just do the simple "I will be 7 years here this October"?

They sound unnatural and make it obvious they are the words of someone for whom English is not their first language.

For your first sentence, I would say: In October, I will have been in this country for seven years.

For your second sentence, I would say: Since October, I have been in this country for seven years.

Those would be more natural ways to say those senstences.

  • Personally, I can't really see much difference, from the grammar point of view, between "I will have been 7 years in the country this October." and "In October, I will have been in this country for seven years" but I appreciate your suggestion. – TomaszRykala Aug 29 '12 at 13:20
0

For spoken English, the following are the shortest, clearest forms I can think of in a conversational response to the question How long have you been in this country?

7 years as of October.

  • 1
    I think you forgot about November :D – MarkTO Feb 5 at 20:20
  • @MarkTO thanks, edit answer to make it one case instead of two. – zooone9243 Feb 5 at 22:53

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.