which is correct? Half hour or Half an hour
Which is correct? Please explain
In my own scholarly writing, I use both (but usually involving distance rather than time). If I want to represent an approximate distance, I will use "The grain warehouse was half a mile south of downtown." If I want to indicate more precision, I will use "The junction is one-half mile past the bridge."
Jonathon, you misplaced your hyphen in your example: One half-hour after the suspect ...
Two rules of hyphenization come into play. The first -- compounds formed with fractions -- says that when the compound (half hour) functions as an adjective before a noun, it is hyphenated. When serves as a noun, it is left open. a half hour versus a half-hour session. In Jonathon's example, half hour should be left open because it does not modify a following noun..
The second rule involves simple fractions with numbers. Noun, adjective, and adverb forms are hyphenated except when the second element is already part of a hyphenated compound. So one-half hour, but a one half-hour session.
|link||answered Jun 10 '12 at 05:24 Jeff Pribyl Grammarly Fellow|
Both are correct. It depends on the context. Usually in formal writing or speech, "half-hour" is used:
One half-hour after the suspect was seen fleeing the area, she was apprehended by Constable Grayson.
... whereas "half an hour" would be used in a more casual setting:
Where were you? I've been waiting for half an hour!
|link||answered Jun 10 '12 at 04:56 Jonathon VS New member|
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