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  5. "Mein Sohn kann die Uhr lesen…

"Mein Sohn kann die Uhr lesen."

Translation:My son can tell time.

October 29, 2013

29 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/misspaws

The English translation should be 'My son can tell the time'

November 3, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lottia38

ABSOLUTELY

August 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/muzzawelsh

My son can tell the time ! There is no "the" in the options if one says "my son can tell time" where i am from people would think my son is Nostradamus and could predict the lottery results next week !

January 6, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

" . . . can tell time," without the "the" is quite common usage. Frequency

October 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dandelionmagic

Yea, in my area i don't think we say "tell the time" it's always been "tell time"

July 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dandelionmagic

And if we ask for the time we usually ask "what time is it?" or "can you tell me what time it is?" with the 'it' not a 'the' noting a specific time.

July 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mg180man

Actually it would be, "Can you tell me what THE time is, please?"

December 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndresZumaran

It was quite difficult for me since in Spanish the phrase is "leer la hora" = ("read the hour"), another possible literal translation for "die Uhr lesen"

October 29, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SeanMeaneyPL

I've learnt something today. Some people "tell time", a construction I have never seen before. It does not appear to be a UK form, so I imagine it is predominantly an American one.

March 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

Similarly, one will seldom hear "learnt" in the U.S..

March 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sduckwor

It is 'the time' not just 'time'. Dislike American tendancy to drop articles. 'In branch' shudder

May 24, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ProjectHopeless

Well I do know it is common to say "My son can tell time." But I've never heard "In branch." instead of "In the branch."I am from Missouri, but I'm not to far down south so maybe it is common down there :)

October 2, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/greg.sandy

I am from Atlanta GA, My son can tell time is used. Now if we can train Duo.

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

Well, I'm personally not too fond of dropping the subject or misspellings: (Tell me, WHO? "dislikes American tendency to . . . ")

October 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dan.vegan4life

Likewise, it drives me mad. I've heard expressions such as "write me" and "you got mail". Write you what? Is that "write to me", "write me a letter", "write me an email" or something else entirely? As for "you got mail", my reply would be "yes, I know, I have received a lot of it throughout my life. I expect you ate food and you drank water at some point too."

Language is a code, which, when applied correctly can be used to communicate thoughts, ideas and information from one being to another, but used incorrectly can lead to all sorts of confusions and potential trouble, even danger. I do hope that when the president finally gets around to making "America great again" he includes a total reform of their current educational system...

June 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dlouw84

Why was: "My son is able to read the clock" not accepted?

July 5, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NeoTubNinja

Should be. "My son can read the clock" was accepted.

September 22, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OgnjenG.

well it should not be accepted, because it's a kind of nonsense. I am not native English speaker, but i doubt that anyone would speak in that manner. I reported that anyway as a wrong translation

January 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NeoTubNinja

Care to elaborate?

As a native English speaker, I find it makes perfect sense. It's not like it's an idiomatic sentence that loses a lot of information in the translation. "Reading a clock" is synonymous with "telling time".

Could you make an argument that the use of "telling time" is more colloquial than "reading a clock"? Probably. Does it invalidate the above translation and make it incorrect. Nope.

January 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OgnjenG.

As i said, i am not native English speaker, so i did not claim specifically that it was wrong. I just said, that i had never heard anyone saying it in everyday speech. I have found this source and since you claim it has perfect sense i must admit i was wrong, although i still think it's better, or if I must to say more natural, to stick with sentence provided by DL... http://www.wikihow.com/Read-a-Clock

January 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dan.vegan4life

Tell time what? Tell time to stop? Tell time to go faster?

June 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

"Tell time" is idiom. To be verbose: "My son is able to ascertain the time from reading the face of a clock or watch."

June 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NeoTubNinja

Yep. Basically if you can answer the question "What time is it?" with the time, you can tell time.

June 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dan.vegan4life

No, "tell the time" is not an idiom, it is a straightforward sentence.

The word "time" has more than one definition, (see https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/tell if you are unsure of this). The most commonly used is "Communicate information to someone in spoken or written words", but it can also be used to mean "Decide or determine correctly or with certainty", for example "I could tell by his face that he was not having a good day" etc.

So you see that "tell the time" simply means "to be able to know or perceive, by observation, what the time is."

In this particular sentence, we will generally infer that the speaker is referring to a young child who has learned to read a clock face but this combination of words could also be expanded to something like "my son is the chief navigator on board a ship and he can tell the time by the position of the stars and the moon."

"Tell" can also be used as a noun to describe an unconscious physical reaction, often on the face of a poker player, that reveals their attempted deception.

"Tell time", however, is not an idiom. It's just wrong, end of story.

June 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

In English, at a certain point, common usage becomes "correct" usage; "tell time" is more common than "tell the time":
tell time, v tell the time
But that's not really the point. You have correctly identified the definition of "tell" that pertains to "tell time". But all idioms do not have to be divorced from the plain meaning of the component words. "Idiom" per the Oxford Dictionary can also mean:

A form of expression natural to a language, person, or group of people.

What you seem to be hung up on is the use (or disuse) of "the". But "time" can be uncountable and thus if my son can ascertain the time in general--and not just at this particular moment--then he can "tell time". Just as one can "see water" as well as "see the water" or "eat food" as well as "eat the food". Subtle differences between the two, but omitting the "the" does not make it wrong.

June 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ericsonn0

Personally, I believe that as Duolingo is a language learning programme then, the most 'correct' form of English language ought to be practiced. Therefore, ''My son can tell the time.'', should be the translation.

March 21, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/greg.sandy

"My Son can read the time". That's what the sentence says. What's the problem here? Where does TELL come into it anyway? Come on Duo.

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CapnDoug

"Tell time" or "Tell the time" is the normal / usual way to say in English that one is able to determine what time it is.

July 27, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EvelineF.

My son can read the clock would be a better translation, can tell time means kann die Zeit erzählen.

December 27, 2016
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