This morning I was listening to my favourite radio show by Shaun Keaveny – together with chocolate & tangerine granola it’s one of the few things that gets me out of bed. Today he chatted to Brian Cox – the great British physicist and, apparently, one of the sexiest men alive, who has just finished filming The Human Universe series. He mentioned that it’ll premiere ‘a week Tuesday’, and I immediately thought that I should write about this ‘a week …’ usage which puzzled me for quite some time.
In fact, it can also be ‘a week on…’, but ‘on’ is sometimes dropped. You use week in expressions such as ‘a week on Monday‘, ‘a week next Tuesday‘, and ‘tomorrow week‘ to mean exactly one week after the day that you mention.
– The 800 metre final is on Monday week (Reverso).
– We’ll be back a week on Friday (Oxford Dictionary).
Actually, after receiving a comment from a friend and a diligent reader of this blog, Zsofia, I double-checked Brian Cox’s twitter and it said that The Human Universe will start on 7 October, which is in one week, also on Tuesday. So when saying ‘a week Tuesday‘ he meant ‘next Tuesday’ because it’s Tuesday today! If he said ‘a week Friday’, then it would mean ‘a week after the coming Friday’.
You quite often hear ‘Monday/Tuesday etc. week‘ (=the Monday/Tuesday etc after next Monday/Tuesday etc.), which effectively is two weeks, as in:
– I’ll be home Thursday week (if today is Tuesday, 30 September, the person is coming back on Thursday, 9 October).
You might also find this thread on Wordreference forum useful – I certainly did!
P.S. I hope I got it right!
Hi, just to make sure there’s no misunderstandings, the thread on Wordreference mentioning 2 weeks was referring to this: If on a Tuesday you are told “a week on Monday” (or “Monday week” – I’ve never heard it that way), then it can mean almost 2 weeks later, because it’s not the first Monday coming up, but a week after that. So it always means 1 week after the day mentioned. I hope this makes sense.
Thanks for your comment, Zsofia! As I said, there seems to be a lot of confusion around these phrases.
Yes, I suppose depending on what day it is today and what day is mentioned it can be almost two weeks!
I’ll edit my post make it less ambiguous!
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