1

Kitty: 'Jair, my middle finger has been injured for about a week now'. (1)

Kitty: 'Jair, my middle finger was injured for about a week now'. (2)

Could now be ungrammatical in (2)? Or, otherwise, (1) means that Kitty's finger hasn't yet healed, whereas (2) implies that that finger is no longer damaged -- e.g., it works?

4

“...finger has been injured for about a week now.” (1)

This means that an injury occurred to the finger roughly seven days in the past and it's still injured. The same meaning would be conveyed without “now” at the end.

“...finger was injured for about a week now.” (2)

Your first guess is correct. This is ungrammatical unless it's some sort of folksy way of calling attention to something in the past that's about to be the foundation of another point (like “Now listen here...”).

“...finger was injured for about a week.” (3)

Without “now”, the statement is grammatical again. All we can conclude from this version of the sentence without further context is that a finger injury occurred at some point in the past and healed seven days later (the finger is now healed). This statement would probably go with another that would provide greater detail about when the injury occurred, or when it healed (like “The dog bit my hand on Easter.”).

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    #2 could also be fixed by saying "...finger was injured about a week ago." That works regardless of whether the finger has healed or is still injured. – J.R. Sep 27 '13 at 21:04
  • So, 'Jair, my middle finger was injured for about a week but now it has healed and I can play again. Can you?' is grammatical. Is it? – user2793 Sep 28 '13 at 7:25
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    @Atsuto - Yes, but be sure to put a comma between "week" and "but": _Jair, my middle finger was injured for about a week, but now it has healed and I can play again." – J.R. Sep 28 '13 at 18:05
  • @J.R., does that comma clarify that 'but' there means 'nevertheless'? – user2793 Sep 28 '13 at 18:44
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    @Atsuto - Not quite. "Now it has healed and I can play again" is a complete sentence; therefore, a comma is the right punctuation to use. Read Rule #1 here. Without the comma, the sentence especially hard to parse because it has both a but and an and. – J.R. Sep 28 '13 at 21:59

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