What is a third of a third

From a distance of 15 meters

question

In soccer reports I keep hearing the phrase “a shot from 15 meters away”. My question would be whether it means “meters” or “meters” - or is “meters” only correct if you no longer add the word “distance” to it?

answer

Hello S.,

both are possible here. If meter as here as a measure in the plural after a number, both the endless form apply meter so also the bent form Meters as correct. Whether the word distance follows or not, has no influence on:

a shot from 15 meters [distance]
a shot from 15 meters [distance]

Usually masculine and neuter measurements and quantities are given unburled in the nominative singular:

2.5 kilos of apples
two pairs of shoes
nearly three dozen police officers
12 euros
a screen size of 17 inches / inch

The masculine and neuter measurements and quantities that refer to the unstressed occupy a special position here el or he end up. They are special because you often cannot tell from their form whether they are in the singular or in the plural:

(the / the) third - (the) third
(the) liter - (the) liter
(the) kilometer - (the) kilometer

In the dative plural, however, the word forms differ from the nominative singular. They then have the ending n, which it "betrays" as the plural form:

the third
the liters
the kilometers

In the case of measurements and quantities of this kind, both the inflected and the ending form are considered correct in the dative plural:

for two thirds of the respondents
for two thirds of the respondents

a content of up to 7.5 liters
a content of up to 7.5 liters

a shot from 15 meters away
a shot from 15 meters away

a height of 10 centimeters
a height of 10 centimeters

You can find more about this on this page in the Canoonet grammar (in particular the section “Special case: meter, liter, third”).

With best regards

Dr. Bopp

PS: Extraordinarily attentive readers may have noticed that this topic was already covered in the blog in 2010. Since I assume (I am so realistic) that most of the people do not read the blog so regularly, I do not take it amiss that the question about this dative n keeps popping up. I hope, conversely, that nobody blames me for this repetition.

Author Dr. BoppPosted on Categories General, Conjugation / DeclinationTags Declination, Dimensions