10 years ago/later, which is 2010, the Avengers fought/ fights the villian Thanos.

who else wants the burger? why else would he do that?

Why are the adverbs later, ago, and else placed after 10 years, who and why?

i think 10 years is a noun phrase modified by 'ago', the adverb and because you can modify it with an adjective clause, 'which is 2010' from the sentence.

The same goes to the other sentence. Why is the adverb placed after the word it is modifying?

What does the rules say or is this just how we use it?

  • Ago ten years or else who are just not valid English! Feb 26, 2022 at 17:13
  • I think else is an adjective in Who else is different?, where it modifies a noun element. It's an adverb in How else is he different?, where it modifies a verb element. Feb 26, 2022 at 18:44

1 Answer 1


ten years ago and ten years later and a few others call for the simple past tense or another past tense. They are set phrases. The define a time period which is past or over. These set phrases cannot go with the present tense unless you are using the literary device of the historical present.

  • They left ten years ago.
  • Ten years later, they fought the villain.

Also, a few others: Ten years earlier or ten minutes sooner.

  • Ten years earlier they did not fight them.
  • Ten minutes sooner was not an option.
  • Thx. But i dont think u answer my question... why is ago placed after the noun phrase? what abt what else and 10 cm "long"? Why are else and long placed after the noun? Feb 27, 2022 at 23:35
  • @Alienxalienz I did answer the question. Those uses are set phrases. "who else" and "how long" is not the same thing. They do not accompany a verb tense with a set meaning.
    – Lambie
    Feb 28, 2022 at 14:23
  • Can u explain "they.... meaning"? Mar 1, 2022 at 21:03
  • @Alienxalienz I cannot understand that comment. Please don't use texting language here like u, no apostrophes and lower-case i for I.
    – Lambie
    Mar 1, 2022 at 21:35
  • I mean what do u mean by they do not accompany.... meaning in your previous comment Mar 3, 2022 at 6:58

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