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Then vs than

I'm having a disagreement with a friend. He thinks the word "than" should follow the statement "Get it right", however I think it should be "then". What do you think?

ie; Get it right THAN

or

Get it right THEN

Re: Then vs than

It is "then".

"Than" is used as a preposition in comparisons like "Ed is better than Kim at maths.

But the "then" in your example is an adverb, an optional item normally used at the end of a sentence, typically to emphasise the need to get it right:

A: "I'll be in big trouble if I get it wrong".
B: "Well, get it right, then"!


PaulM

Re: Then vs than

What is actually being said in the shortened sentence is:

A: "I'll be in big trouble if I get it wrong."
B: "(If you don't want to get in big trouble), then get it right."

> A: "I'll be in big trouble if I get it wrong."
B: "Then get it right!"

>>A: "I'll be in big trouble if I get it wrong."
B: "Get it right then!"

Re: Then vs than

It's not a 'shortened' sentence at all. The expression "Get it right, then" is some kind of emphatic riposte to someone who has expressed the need (whatever that may be) to get something right.

The point is that "then" is correct, not "than" and that it is an adjunct, a grammatically omissible item in clause structure.



PaulM

Re: Then vs than

Perhaps Mr. Matthews would like to address HOW we have arrived in the development of our language at the point where - as we both accept - then' is used for emphasis. Why do we say 'then' and not, for instance, 'than'...or 'there'!

Re: Then vs than

I explained about the contrast between "than" and "then" in my first answer. Try reading it.


I don't intend to go off-topic.



PaulM