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[RIP Robin Williams. You were a versatile actor, indeed].

The piece of news from Huffington Post reads...

In 2006, after 20 years sober, he checked himself into rehab for alcoholism. He opened up about his struggles with addiction to alcohol and cocaine in a powerful interview with The Guardian and on "Good Morning America."

What sort of use is that? An adjective after a noun clause without any preposition? Or better use noun for that reason? ...after 20 years of soberness... or something the like?

I checked all the examples of the word sober here, on MW but none of them fits the structure of HP.

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For your example, if you have to, you should use after 20 years of sobriety. And, 20 years sober is the concise way of implying 20 years of sobriety – Manish Aug 12 '14 at 6:27
@LasciviousGrace I guess after 20 years of soberness is not incorrect though. Do you find it awkward? – Maulik V Aug 12 '14 at 6:32
Not a native speaker, but yes, I do find it a bit awkward! Also, I haven't encountered such use of soberness very often. – Manish Aug 12 '14 at 6:40
@LasciviousGrace That sort of sentence is quite common. As a medical practitioner, I have heard/read that at several places as in here - psychonaut.com/synthetic-psychedelics/… – Maulik V Aug 12 '14 at 7:37
I'm not sure I would consider that usage of soberness in a blog to be very authoritative. – Manish Aug 12 '14 at 7:43

I've just read from A Student's Introduction to English Grammar the other day that an adjective can indeed take a noun phrase as its modifier like :"five year old", "two hours long" , "a bit over powering"

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Ah, that's convincing! +1 – Maulik V Aug 12 '14 at 7:51

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