17 November 2020: November 17, 2020, can be written as 'today'.
17 November 2019: Last 17 November 2019, or 17 November last year? Which is correct?
What’s the importance or significance of writing dates naturally? What does it mean by writing dates naturally?
We need to look at an example to have an understanding about it.
Marry had a heart attack last March 2019.
If you take a close look at the above example you can understand the fact that, the word “last” must be replaced with “on”. But, why is that so?
Reason is simple, since we are living in 2020 the word last means, it is pointing at 2019. The world last in that sentence means, one year prior to the current.
So it is not natural to write “last” in the above example, as the last year (2019) is also mentioned in the same sentence.
Marry had a heart attack on March 2019.
This example shows you the natural way of writing or mentioning a date.
We can only use the word “last” if the time span is less than a year from the present, since we are talking about year. If anything more than that, the natural way of mentioning it would be with the use of “on”.
The next time you mention dates, do make a note of how natural they can be read.