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Which is correct? Are both correct depending on what you're meaning to say?

i.e. "This problem is the result of an outage experienced in days past." (or passed)

What confuses me in this instance (given example) is that the days are both in the past and have passed. The example sentence that I've given looks correct though. If the days are in the past, and you are talking about something else that happened in them, then it's "days past" - past is used as an adjective. However, if you are talking about the passage of time, should it be "days passed" - passed being a verb?
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'Days past' is the normal English; though I understand the other, it reads oddly. I don't follow your reasoning. Reserve 'passed' for a more clearly verbal situation, like 'Three days passed, and we still felt stiff'.
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Which is correct? Are both correct depending on what you're meaning to say?

i.e. past." This is correct. 'past' describes 'days'.

You see this more clearly if you say '. . . in past days.', which is also correct.'

But note that more common English is to reword, eg This problem is the result of a recent outage.

i.e. "This problem is the result of an outage experienced in days passed." This is not correct grammar.

You'd have to say eg "This problem is the result of an outage experienced in days that have passed.' This sounds unnatural and, frankly, silly.

Clive

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Comments  
"This problem is the result of an outage experienced in days (that have) passed.

"This problem is the result of an outage experienced in days (of the) past."

This is my understanding: both phrases abbreviate a longer sentence. Both phrases are grammatically correct, depending on the rest of your intended wording.

The word passed can function as an adjective or as part of a verb phrase. The word past can function as an adjective, noun, adverb, or preposition.

Both examples I listed are technically correct; however, the intended wording of the second example is awkward, and so I would go with the first. Still, the question could open a pretty cool interpretive debate. Do we track the origin of the idiom and base its grammar on the original phrasing? Or do we simply accept both forms? Or am I missing something glaringly obvious? Personally, aside from academic discussion, I usually handle issues like this in writing by rephrasing my sentence and avoiding them. Emotion: smile
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