The following sentense is the title of a news article.

NASA's Mars Helicopter makes last spin on Earth before before July launch

What is the difference between 'before before' and 'before'? Does 'before before' mean 'much before'?

  • 3
    It's a typo / mistake. Mar 31, 2020 at 8:02
  • 3
    Yep. Just an error. It should be "before the July launch"; looks like the sentence got rewritten a couple times without careful proofreading. Mar 31, 2020 at 8:08

1 Answer 1


It is a mistake. Could have happened from any number of variations of copy-and-paste gone wrong, or possibly even just from the author being interrupted in the middle of writing that sentence. Unfortunately, this sort of thing is all too common these days - the art of proofreading seems to have died in the rush to get news published - so a Google search will probably pick up similar mistakes from any online newspaper.

"Normal" English very, very rarely has repeated words like that, (other than for emphasis like I did just there,) and I cannot think of any example where before could legitimately be doubled up like that.

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