1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: German
  4. >
  5. "Ich arbeite heute Abend."

"Ich arbeite heute Abend."

Translation:I am working this evening.

January 27, 2014

28 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/toughmind1

why is " I am working today evening" wrong?


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

That's not a proper English sentence. You can however say "I am working this evening."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/baloghp321

Why is "today evening" not proper English? Just curious.


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

That is a very good question; I've never thought about it before, and I don't know the answer. You can say "tomorrow evening" or "yesterday evening"; you can say "today, in the evening"; you can say "today's evening" when talking about an event in the evening; but you cannot say "today evening".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Andr3546

I work today's evening was not acceptable either... Is it my mistake or Duo's?


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

Contrary to what Pfiff wrote, I would say that “today’s evening” is wrong.

Either “this evening” or “tonight”.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AE-ae-ron

Today - may refer to any portion of the day: morning, afternoon, or evening.

e.g. "I am going to the dentist today." (could be any time of day)

Evening - denotes some time late in the day.

e.g. "I am going shopping this evening."

It doesn't make sense grammatically or logically to include both 'today' 'evening' in the same clause.


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

It's not a question of logic, as Pfiff's answer demonstrates (with "yesterday evening" and "tomorrow evening", and don't forget that any name of a day of the week can be used with "evening" as well). It's simply a question of custom. We don't say it because we don't say it.

It may be influenced by the fact that "this evening" is commonly understood to be today's evening in English, so we have a meaningful phrase that works, and that pushes out the "today evening" alternative, whereas with the phrases incorporating the other days we have no meaningful substitute to take their place.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/o0oKrishnao0o

"Today", whilst denoting the whole day also has strong connotations of being day time (when the sun is up). Without any information other than "today", it is accepted that you are referring to the day time. So the term "today evening" doesn't go together well. Similarly, it is also accepted that unless it has been stated otherwise, the day in question is always the present day. So, "today evening" also sounds redundant. Just using "evening" would have been taken to mean that you are referring to the evening of this day.
"Today I'm going to the dentist" - during daylight.
"In the evening we're going dancing" - present day.
"I'm working tonight" - during the night, typically present day, however "tonight" can also refer to the whole blanket of night until sunrise.


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

yeah that's not a proper english sentence


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

And it says this evening is also wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Weltschmerz1337

So both 'heute Abend' and 'heute Nacht' can mean tonight?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Scarlet2906

That makes sense, since Duo's an owl!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndreGardner21

Does Heute need to be in this sentence?


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

Yes, since it is referring to the evening of today. if you remove the 'today', you can't tell which evening this sentence takes place in.


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

Can I say: "Ich arbeite heute Morgen"?


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

Yes, if you are talking about today's morning.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/janis-e

What's wrong with " I work at today's evening"?


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

That isn't proper in english


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RossGee1

Earlier DL said heute = now. Could an acceptable transaction be "I am now working tonight."


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

I don't think so.

Where it could translate as "now", I believe the sense would be more like "nowadays", which wouldn't work in your sentence along with "tonight".

Your other problem with respect to this sentence would be that if "heute" were "now", you would be missing a word in the German sentence to clarify that it was "this evening" (i.e. "tonight" in your sentence) that you were talking about.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Graham416541

"I am working today's evening" would be the literal translation though, right? I understand that it isn't proper in English though.


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

No. If you're being literal, then "I work today evening".

There's nothing in here that would correspond to the possessive 's.

Also, the fact that heute is lowercase shows that it's considered an adverb -- and those don't have possessive endings anyway. i.e. it's not the noun "a today" but just the adverb "today".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/o0oKrishnao0o

No, it says "I work this evening"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/soomaq2

Why not 'Heute Abend' vs heute Abend?


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

Why not 'Heute Abend' vs heute Abend?

Abend (evening) is a noun and is therefore capitalised.

heute (today) is an adverb and is not capitalised.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kristina98275

Badly set correct answer. You test if I understand what "heute Abend" means. Not if I know the perfect English expression that a native English speaker would say. You test German. Not English.


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

Duolingo is a stupid computer. It can only match answers against lists of acceptable translations. It doesn't actually understand English or German.

So if an answer doesn't appear on the list, it will get rejected.

The lists can't contain all possible non-native-speaker mistakes -- that would make them enormously huge.

If you need leniency, there's no substitute for a real human teacher who can actually think.

Learn German in just 5 minutes a day. For free.