I put "Four long years were we on the boat" Why is this wrong?
It's not normal English but you would absolutely read it in older literature. Given that praeteritum is some kind of stodgy way of writing in German, I think it's a fine answer.
The word order is a bit weird, I think it is easier to see if you change the time to something else:
Yeah but the "four long years" part lends itself to dramatic retelling. It's more natural for me to follow "four long years" with "were we" than "we were."
I agree with you. Grammatically and structurally it is closer to the German. As a question, you would start with the "Were we …". I a reporting it
Your sentence seems to be more of a question, with the placement of the verb 'were' before the subject 'we'.
Why doesn't the adjective get an 'n' ending? i.e. langen... Isn't vier Jahre plural and in the accusative case?
"We were on the boat for four long years" is not correct?
Why not ''ship''?