student asking question

Are "for a minute" and "for a moment" always interchangeable? Are those expressions have the same meaning?


Native speaker’s answer


"A minute" indicates a period of time which is one minute, or sixty seconds long. "A moment", on the other hand, does not specify a specific duration of time, but rather indicates a short or brief period of time. So "a moment" could be much longer than "a minute". However, a "minute" is often used metaphorically, and not literally sixty seconds. So in the case where "for a minute" is not used literally, then "for a moment" is very similar and they can be used interchangeably.

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