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Tasmanian wolf died out around the 1800s.

Q1. Is the above sentence correct? (I'm not sure whether I can use 'around' here.)

Q2. How do I read 'in the 1800s' aloud?

Thank you!

  • Your second question is hard to understand. Can you rephrase it to make your meaning clear? As it stands, the answer is: "With your eyes." (The statement itself is false, by the way. The last known specimen of Thylacinus cynocephalus died on September 7, 1936.) – P. E. Dant Aug 12 '16 at 3:31
  • Thanks for the comment, I will change it to 'read it aloud'. – EmmaXL Aug 12 '16 at 4:30
  • That's a good idea, but I should have understood what you intended as Alan did. (Even better would be to say "How do I pronounce...") – P. E. Dant Aug 12 '16 at 4:35
  • Hi, I thought 'pronounce' can only be used to say things such as pronounce a particular word :) – EmmaXL Aug 12 '16 at 4:38
  • You're absolutely right! In this case, "1800s" is equivalent to a word - and I'm sure you already knew how to pronounce "in the!" "Read aloud" as you have it is quite good, and my comment wasn't quite right. Instead, I should have recommended that you ask: How do I pronounce "1800s"? That's how a native speaker might put it. – P. E. Dant Aug 12 '16 at 4:58
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Around works nicely with years and times. But see John's answer to why around the 1800s may not be what you want to use.

To say that a species died out, you can say either

The Tasmanian wolf died out around the 1800s.

or

Tasmanian wolves died out around the 1800s.

You read or say '1800s' as '18 hundreds' ('eighteen hundreds'). So 'the 1800s' is read as 'the eighteen hundreds'.

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When you use the word "around" like this, it means "approximately" or "in the vicinity of" or "in the neighborhood of". When you use it with years, you'd give a rough year as an example:

  1. "...around 1800" would imply anything from around 1780 (see what I did there?) to around 1820.
  2. "...around 1814" would mean somewhere between (say) 1812 to 1816 - not, for example, 1820 since 1814 is fairly precise!

The problem with "1800s" (pronounced "eighteen hundreds") is that it is a whole century: 1800 to 1899.

  1. "...around (the) 1800s" could be anything from 1750 to 1950!

As you can see, different people would assume different things when they heard "around" applied to dates, but the 'looser' the date you start with, the 'wider' the "around" suggests.

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