Searching Gmail by Date Range

Find What You’re Searching For, Faster

The search features contained within Gmail are quite powerful, and there are a number of search operators that you can make use of. In this post we’ll be focusing on date-based search filters.

Finding messages within a certain date range

Suppose you want to find all messages before 31st December 2016. Well, you can search like this:
before: 2016/12/31


Note that the search date format is yyyy/mm/dd. For example:
before: yyyy/mm/dd


If you want to find all messages after a certain date, just search like this:
after: 2017/01/01


You can combine these two search operators to find messages between certain periods of time, for example:
before:2016/12/1 after:2016/11/28

See Search By Date In Action:

Gmail Search by date (date range example)

“older_than” and “newer_than” funtions

What if you wanted to find extremely old messages, say more than 2 years past? You can search for them like this:

(Note the underscore “_” in “older_than”. “2y” refers to “2 years”. You can also use “m” for months and “d” for days)


Here’s another example in which you’d find messages newer than 2 days:

Or, perhaps you’d like to find all messages older than 5 months:

You can also combine “older_than” and “newer_than” search operators to:
older_than:2m newer_than:3m


While combining date ranges, keep in mind that the date range should be valid. For example, the following search doesn’t make sense because it asks for a time range that doesn’t exist:
older_than:2m newer_than:1m


See the date range search in action:

search by age of the message in gmail

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