"Hoy es un día histórico."

Translation:Today is a historic day.

5 years ago

87 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/brandlord

An historic is also correct.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/circumbendibus
circumbendibus
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"An" is used if and only if the next word starts with a vowel sound. In some dialects, the "h" is silent, so you would say (and spell) "an historic." In American English (which I think Duolingo is geared toward), the "h" should be pronounced, and so you should always say and spell "a historic."

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/spangloid
spangloid
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Forgive the essay... This 'a/an historic' debate is not a UK/US difference. It's just an old school language rule that most English speakers either ignore or don't know about.

Yes, some accents (notably some British ones) drop 'h's when they speak, and would naturally use 'an' rather than 'a' in those cases, but this is not correct English, because it is incorrect to drop the 'h' in the first place. Eg. Correct (verbally and written): a horse, a hot dog, a hospital... Incorrect (but not uncommon verbally): an 'orse, an 'ot dog, an 'ospital...

Essentially, in English, the correct time to use 'an' is where is it needed to prevent an awkward glottal stop, i.e. before a vowel sound, and the correct time to use 'a' is everywhere else, i.e. before a consonant sound. Eg. an elephant, an avocado, an hour, an honour.... a dog, a house, a university...

That's the rule all English speakers tend to follow - if it sounds like a consonant when you say it, use 'a', if it sound like a vowel, use 'an'.

BUT, there is an (archaic) exception, which states that when a word begins with 'h' and is stressed on the second syllable, you use 'an'. Presumably this reflects how words used to be pronounced back in the day, but who knows. Eg. an historic, an heroic, an horrendous... (yes Annwenn I just stole all your examples)

HOWEVER, as I said, most people don't know or don't care about that rule, and just keep it simple. You're certainly not wrong if you say 'an historic' but nobody reasonable will complain if you use 'a historic', as the vast majority would!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/skibo21776

I especially like the "nobody reasonable" observation.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lew86071

Spangloid is correct.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mskycc3
mskycc3
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Interesante...

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GedFarnan

Thanks for that.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/EugeneTiffany

Disagree. Saying, "this is an historic day" is not uncommonly done in the US above street level talk.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/WarriorGwilym

well that makes no sense to me ( I am mostly English )

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mskycc3
mskycc3
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I think that, more precisely, in the US, it's usually only used when you want to sound "fancy", but not for normal formal contexts.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Espeonage24

Then again, there is the exception when u is at the beginning of a word and it makes a yoooo sound. Then you say a instead of an.

So instead of an ukelele or an unique person, you would say a ukelele or a unique person.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrew48

There is no exception, as ukelele and unique do not start with vowel sounds, but rather semi-vowel (often just considered consonantal) sounds.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mskycc3
mskycc3
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For what it's worth, I believe the Hawaiian pronunciation is oo-koo-leh-leh, which starts with a vowel sound :) But I guess we're speaking English and not Hawaiian :)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Iago
Iago
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That's what I typed and it marked me right.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DmytroShkr
DmytroShkr
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Not me :(

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Imaobong_Jones

Yes and also It is a spanish day

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/rachyb638

Really? It doesn't sound quite right to me.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AlpacaGodess

wow really?? That's weird!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jbtaylor

Not to wander too far from Spanish, but I was taught that during WWII (or maybe WWI), when we got news about the European front from the British, our journalists picked up their very British "an historic event", as they don't pronounce the "h" over there. So now that's the one "h" word in American English that people (esp. journalists) precede with "an". It drives me crazy.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/circumbendibus
circumbendibus
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Huh, that's true! I've never heard anyone say "an hospital," only ever "an historic."

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrew48

That's because "hospital" has the emphasis on the first syllable. "An" is used before H words that either have a silent H or are emphasized on the second syllable.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/circumbendibus
circumbendibus
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What words in American English start with silent H's that aren't borrowed from other languages? I think it's just about whether the word starts with a vowel sound.

Do you have any other examples of words that - start with the letter H - start with an /h/ sound - have the stress on the second syllable - anyone would actually say 'an' in front of ?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrew48

I'm merely describing the rule, not claiming that it's in common use, which it isn't.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BobZ1

Didnt know that, interesting! "An historic ..." Is common in news articles.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/skepticalways

JB, you & others are right about journalists picking up the Brit pronunciation & misusing the article "a" in Am. Eng. newscasts. Journalism & Eng. were my degree majors, & just because an uninformed public "accepts" their error, because they don't know the rule governing it, doesn't make it correct. The vowel sound dictates the use of "an," a "hard 'h' sound" requires "a," as in horse, hat, hotel, etc. Trust me; many journalists are NOT experts in grammar, but just read teleprompters. To be correct in Spanish, we must accept their rules, & that applies in reverse. It is NOT "street" or "ignorant" speech to say A historic day; it follows the rule of American English. Also, no one I know says "herb" with a hard "h" sound except for the man's name "Herb," otherwise it's pronounced "'erb."

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pgraham28

Herb is pronounced with the H by everyone that speaks English outside the US. A herb. Not an 'erb.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/circumbendibus
circumbendibus
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Aw, I really wanted your explanation to be true. This chart seems not to reflect the notion though. https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=an+historic%2Ca+historic&year_start=1900&year_end=2008&corpus=17&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2Can%20historic%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Ca%20historic%3B%2Cc0 Granted, I don't know exactly what content Google sifts through (just books?), but it would be really weird if the phenomenon just hit journalists and stopped there.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sallyann_54

But I do wonder if ´a historic` is correct.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Iago
Iago
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Yes, it is. They both are :)

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DmytroShkr
DmytroShkr
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historic=important, history-making

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aeromester

Today is hysterical

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/greatlanguages
greatlanguages
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Why is "Today it is an historic day" wrong yet Duolingo makes me translate "Ahora es muy tarde" as Now IT is too late." ???

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mskycc3
mskycc3
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Maybe because "hoy" is a noun, but "ahora" isn't.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Annwenn
Annwenn
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I left my earlier comment in haste. This should clarify when to use "a" vs "an." This was taken from Mirriam Webster: http://wordinfo.info/unit/3431/ip:1. It has to do with consonant sounds vs vowel. That is how you decipher the usage.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/spinwing

Why is "this" in staed of "today" wrong? Since the verb form is "is" the object should also be taken from the subject.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JoshSan95

According to the history channel everyday is a historic day

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BasslineJo

The one thing that has hit me boggled, is why nobody questions the "historic" vs "historical" bit... Or is it indeed just me being wrong there?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mskycc3
mskycc3
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Depending on what you're asking, I think that they're two different words with different meanings: "historic" means that something is or will be very important in history; "historical" is just something that happened at some time in the past.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BasslineJo

Left*

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MillieBath

Did anyone ever stop to consider that it really doesn't matter. Whether you drop your hs or not or whether you say a or an in the grand scheme of things is really not important. I'm gonna get a lot of fownvotes for this!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DAO_2468

Not as many downvotes as me for complaining about the US flag being used for English :D

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/noderoom

I said, "This is a historic day." and it marked it wrong. Come ON man... If it wants us to do direct word for word translations why even put them in complete sentences?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/skepticalways

"Hoy" means "Today," not "This," so if spoken, everyone would have understood you perfectly, but in a workbook exercise, they would want you to know the word "today." Yeah, I know --picky, picky, picky!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/skepticalways

I also wrote that I like your avatar, and it didn't print that for some reason.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rach.Chadwick

Today is historic. Scottish referendum

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TamFerg33

I was incorrect with ... Today, it is a historic day. Can someone tell me why?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/repairviteSE

You probably don't care anymore but I believe the reason this was wrong was because you introduced an "it" that should not be there...in fact an intention of comma then "it".

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/parked91
parked91
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This is appropriate. Today's the Fourth of July!!!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/koojilefet
koojilefet
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actually it wont be until tomorrow

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DAO_2468

I don't think anyone understood what you said but you're right.

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mwood611
mwood611
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Presidential Election day

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sojournerbliss

People, "american english" is no one thing. It is completely unreasonable to state emphatically what American English is, based solely on whatever dialect one is most accustomed to. We are not called, " the great american melting pot" for no reason. I have heard plenty of USAmericans drop the "h" in historic and other such words just as we do in "honor".

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/joyceluna3

really?

8 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Karma734492

An historic day doesn't mean it's history it just felt like history

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SamKevin
SamKevin
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could someone explain what is the difference between historic and historical?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/bomorton

A historic is correct!

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pgraham28

Merriam-Webster says 'A' historic is up to 4 times more common than 'AN' historic in US English and that 'AN' is used commonly enough to be considered correct.

Majority is 'A' historic as the 'h' is pronunced unlike in the words 'hono(u)r' and 'hour' where it is not pronounced.

Go with 'A' historoc and accept that 'AN' is being allowed through as a typo.

Side note... I will always say herb vs 'erb. 'erb sounds too much like a child learning to speak that still says 'free' instead of 'three'.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roger_Burke

Doesn't "a" conform to the noun day

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jbtaylor

It does indeed. "Día" is masculine.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/kazaishadow

Love getting tested on this over and over

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/btc2102

"Today is an historic day." - Why is this wrong???

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MystyrNile
MystyrNile
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They probably marked it wrong because "historic" generally starts with a consonant and the N is usually dropped in that case.

Just report it.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/fauna1

I think could be either

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mmdaniela

Why can it not be histórica?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/garrboysw

today is Halloween here in honduras

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JemmaHussey

Does historical also work with this sentence?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/alexis585810

If it was historic, how would they know it? Like, when the San Fransisco Earthquake happened, did they wake up and say, "This is a historic day!" And what if nothing happened that day? :-P

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrew48

I imagine one might have been able to say that when the armistice was signed at the end of World War I, or when a nuclear bomb was dropped on Hiroshima.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PepeTheFrog2022

Why would, "Today is historic not be accepted?"

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/HansStaffo

I think "today is historic" beautifully shows off the economy of english vs. spanish. If I was spanish and trying to learn english or translate into english, I would definitely value the removal of redundancies

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JuniorCornejo

I put this is a historic day but I got it wrong help

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GiovanniSantucci

Duo Lingo wants to hear Today is a historic day; hoy = today. In many cases, you can translate it using "this" or "it" instead of "today" if the rest of the sentence makes it clear that you're talking about a day, but it's hard to make general rules. In this particular case, it is my opinion that "This is a historic day" is valid. From what I can think of, "it" is more commonly used, but the best pattern I can come up with is that "it" is used when you're specifying which day is today, especially either by the date or by something that can be used to identify the date or else is tied with the specific date. Examples: "It's my birthday!" "It's Friday." "It's November 5th." "It's Valentine's Day!" "It's National Sundae Day!" "It's the first day of classes." Whereas "this" is used when saying something about today that is not being identified specifically with the date. Examples: "This is the worst day of my life." "This is the kind of day where schools usually close." "This is the day that I will [verb]!" But sometimes "it" is better even when it has nothing to do with the date: "It's a great day for golf!" And sometimes people use "it's" but then end the sentence with "today" as in, "It's a hot day today." So it's hard to come up with a general rule, besides the fact that in every case (as far as I can think of), "today" works as well as anything. (Examples: "Today is my birthday!" "Today is a great day for golf!" "Today is the worst day of my life.")

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mskycc3
mskycc3
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I think you're hitting very close to the mark, if not spot-on.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jubbasing
Jubbasing
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AN AN AN AN ANNNNN

There. The creepy crawlies have stopped crawling my spine now :)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CinnamonChurros

Could you say "Today is historic." ?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/shreya_saxena

Shouldn't it be "una" cause it's used before "dia"??

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Danielconcasco
Danielconcasco
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Dia is actually masculine.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/kangaroo121

I am only an eleven year old but you use A when the start letter of a word is a conestant like " a dog“ and use AN when the start letter is a vowel (a e i o u) like "an elephant“. This is what i learned in school.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pheonixstrike

What historic day!!!!!????

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jim40

what is wrong with "it is a historic day today"?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/agbtongues

Considering all the discussion, I would suggest that Duolingo count both as correct.

8 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnneHarvey5

"Today is an historic day" is correct. As in "hotel", "honour", "honorarium", "hour" the "h" is not pronounced, and the article is "an", although usage often has the "h" in hotel sounded. The comment concerning the number of syllables in the word is valid, but only sometimes. (In English there always unreasonable exceptions, and reasonable people might just have to be equally unreasonable.)

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Danielconcasco
Danielconcasco
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For hundreds of millions of English speakers, the h is pronouns in hotel, historic, and history, so both are correct.

5 months ago
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