Q:

How many years are there in a score?

A:

There are 20 years in a score. The word "score" can be used to mean a set or group of any 20 items, not just years.

The English word "score" is likely derived from an Old Norse word, "skora," which was used to mean a notch or a tally in addition to meaning the number 20.

One of the most well-known uses of the word "score" to mean a group of 20 years is in the Gettysburg Address, in which Abraham Lincoln said, "Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal."

Martin Luther King, Jr. echoed this in the first line of his "I Have a Dream" speech: "Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand signed the Emancipation Proclamation."


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