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  5. "九時半ちょうどです。"


Translation:It is exactly nine thirty.

June 8, 2017



I am using my second language to learn Japanese. What does sharp mean?


Sharp means that it is that time exactly. Not one second over or under.


shouldnt it be 今 (ima) then


Not necessarily. This sentence means "something" is exactly 9:30, not one second over or under, but there's nothing that says that "something" is happening right now (=今).


Sharp other meanings in English that have nothing to do with time. If someone says something sharply to you it means they are saying something in an aggravated way. And something can be sharp. If a knife is sharp, it could cut you (in this case, the opposite of sharp is dull). Also there's a musical notation called sharp. An F sharp is a half note up on the musical scale. (I think. I'm not musical.)


You forgot "be sure to dress sharp".

Which means something like "make sure you're wearing smart looking almost formal clothes"


So pointy clothes are intelligent looking.


Well not necessarily. While pointy things are sharp, not all sharp things are pointy. For instance a sword can be sharp all along the edge of its blade, but only at its tip will it be pointy.

Also you can have, for example, a sharp mind, but never will you hear of someone having a pointy mind.


You can also describe someone as being sharp - a sharp mind or sharp wit means that someone has a keen mind or wit, or they are quick witted - they can respond quickly and intelligently.


I believe same as "exactly"


Doesn't (han) 半 mean "half" more so than it means 30? Duolingo should make note of that.


It does mean half. In this context it refers to half an hour, so it is equivalent to 30 minutes. In Japanese it is more correct to say 九時半 rather than 九時三十分. It might be more directly translated as "half past nine" but in English, we tend to say 9:30.


American English maybe. In Ireland we say "half past nine" or "half nine" much more commonly than "9:30"!


Exactly the same in the UK - almost always 'half nine', sometimes 'half past nine'.


In The Netherlands 'half nine' is 8:30. So short for 'halfway to 9'


NZ also says half nine.


it's not an american english thing. we use both, and its really just preference.


Yeah, in American English we'd say 9:30. Sometimes you'll hear half-passed but it's not nearly as common.


Whoops, lol. Thanks for that. XD


In this case I can say quite match the Brazilian portuguese. Here we say Nove (nine) e (and) meia (half). So hours in Japanese is much closer to portuguese than english. Just sharing a curiosity. :P


In Hungary we usually say: fél tíz, which means half ten, and that is 9:30. This was a bit weird for me to learn first time as a child, but now I think, it is more logical, but really only a matter of the conception in the use of the language. This form makes it unnecessary to mention if the quarter or the half hour is before or past the given hour. ;-)


How often is ちょうど used?


Occassionally. You can also use it when there's just the right amount of something, (like beer in your glass), or the temperature of your bathwater, and say ちょうどいい.


Ive not heard it used before, but thats just me. It seems like it would be worth looking into.


And I am disappointed that I have not seen the character 半 ever in my life... this shows I have a long way to go.


If you ever live in Japan it will be very useful, since it's the one they use for half-price discount tags on products :D I initially ignored it because it didn't have any number (hence didn't say how much percent it was discounted) until I looked that up in the dictionary and felt like an idiot


i use it in the sense of exact something exact and currently, ive used it describing something in detail kinda like ちゃんと, except ちょうど、 is more like a description of time and exact date, when hanging with friends i guess. 今すぐ is like right now too, seems informal.


Japanese is my mother tongue, and I am using Duolingo to help improve it, but I would personally use ちょうど at the beginning of the sentence.


i know this was 3 years ago, but could you write it as ちょうど九時半です or would it have to be ちょうどは九時半です? i'm still figuring out the grammar, sorry.


Any tips in remembering Kanji and symbols for the numbers? Hiragana and katakana is manageable but other than that it's quite overwhelming.


一二三 should be easy to remember. Imagine Roman numeral but horizontal.

四 four windows, each has four sides

五 five tables, with five lines! (not strokes!)

六 six dancers

七 seven hooks

八 eight volcanoes

九 nine weapons

十 ten cross, or Roman numeral turned 45 degrees

The best way is to write them repeatedly. You can be more creative than me and create a story. ;)


The 七 is also a seven upside down


It's somewhat easy. As someone else said, 一ニ三 are easy, the rest, I looked at small things to remember them. 五 kinda looks like a 5 if you take out the bottom vertical stroke. 七 is an upside down, european 7 (Im latinamerican, but we do know that 7 is often written with a line through it). 十 is easy to remember its 10 due to being a cross. That leaves you with just 4 to remember. 八 is Ha in katakana, 8 is hachi, so there's a quick tip for 8. 四 has an opened-top 4 written in the right side of the kanji (with the down-right stroke). For 六 and 九 I couldnt find any tip written in it, but I had already remembered the previous ones, so it was a walk in the park.


Cool those are literally what i used for remembering the kanji for 1-10. Except for 6 & 9 i just think of Bleach. An image of Byakuya's coat with his back towards me, with the kanji for 6, and for 9 i think of Hisagi's face tattoo with 69 and he's in the 9th squad.


Just like Hachi is the katakana for Ha, I think Kyū being Ku would be helpful. You just add/remove the y. And Yon being a box helps because the exterior has 4 sides. I can't think of any for Roku either, though.

..How is everyone getting all the characters on an English keyboard?


Theres a program in word or something that will automatically create the hiragana or kanji if you type the pronunciation. I think its called ITE


I was under the impressiom that 半 meant 'half' as opposed to 30 - which is what duolingo was offering as the translation. As such would "九時半です" be more accurately translated as "it is half past nine" rather than "it is 9:30"? In addition if you did want to say the same, can you say "九時三十分です" to say "it is 9:30"?

I get that the two sentences are practically the same so this might be a redundant point but was more just concerned about seeing 半 as 30 instead of half?


I agree with you that it's a bit concerning that Duo is teaching 半 means 30, because it only has that meaning specifically when telling the time. "Half" (and hence "half past") would be a better choice to save confusion in the long run.

For example, even when talking about time, when you want to say a time interval of 30 minutes, you must say 30分間 (sanjuppun kan) because 半分間 means "halfway" or "a half interval"


半 means "half"




Omg thanks I've been looking for the kanji for so long


I've taken pre University level Japanese and I haven't heard 九pronounced ku as a stand alone writer word? I thought it was kyu きゅ? Could someone please confirm this?


Well I'm not an expert, but く and きゅうare both On'yomi readings for the kanji 九 and when you use 九 with 時(じ) the reading is くinstead of きゅう


as i understand it is ku when used as time and kyuu on its own


The DL tips also shows it pronounced KU for hours, but KYU for minutes. A number's pronunciation is altered differently for Hours than for minutes, in many cases.


Out of curiousity, is this sentence used more for discribing: the time is early (aka we have time to do things)? "Just" or you better be here on time (being prompt)? "Sharp"


Sharp (when used with time) means exactly, so this sentence should then mean that "the time is exactly 9:30" not 9:29:59 or 9:30:01, but rather exactly 9:30.

You could use sharp to mean be there at that exact time, but this sentence is not telling someone to be anywhere, so that's not the intended meaning here.


I do not understand why in ealier lessons number 9 was spelled as "きゅう" and now is spelled like "く"(九)? Could someone explain this?


Ryszard466485, regarding 九, pronounce it きゅう when counting; pronounce it くfor September (kugatsu) and telling time. That's a small start. I hope someone will add to this list. In case someone in DL-land isn't already aware of this, there are also two different pronunciations for 4 and 7, and I'm trying to figure out under what conditions to use which pronunciation for them, too. That would be a help.


Thank you for the answer. It's throwing light on the subject but it's a pity that it isn't more accurately explained in DL.


Could the sharp here also be used to describe an object that is sharp, like a knife???


"Could the sharp here also be used to describe an object that is sharp, like a knife???" No. Remember that 'sharp' as used in English is just a metaphor when the word is used about time. Metaphors rarely (if at all) translate to Japanese, and definitely not back from metaphor to non-metaphor in the way you asked. It's best to never try to use English metaphors for anything in Japanese. It's also best to never try to map English usage of words for multiple situations to the same situations in Japanese. As a friend (English teacher in Japan) pointed out to me - the word 'break', for example, can be used for lots of things in English, while different words are used for those same cases in Japanese (and that's to some extent because English is an extremely metaphor-filled language - 'break an arm' vs 'break the habit'). This creates problems for Japanese learners if they focus on 'translation' to and from English and Japanese - it doesn't work that way. Forget English, learn Japanese, or you'll be forever stuck in the discussions seen in this and similar threads: always focusing on the English usage of words, which is just irrelevant for learning Japanese. Unfortunately Duolingo's teaching method to some extent promotes this fallacy - it's in the nature of nearly everything being about translation. It makes it easy to fall into this trap. Luckily, if you let go of the white-knuckle hold of English as a reference it actually becomes easier to learn Japanese.


can ちょうど mean "exalty" in others contexts?


Yes, it's commonly used when dealing with money. When you give exact change, cashiers will typically say ちょうどいたします which means "I receive exactly (the right amount)".

[deactivated user]

    "Sharp" is defined by the Illustrated Oxford Dictionary as "punctual"; on an analogue clock this means while the minute hand is within the space of the specified one minute, on a digital one as long as the specified time -to the minute- is showing. That being said I cannot recall it ever being used, or using it, to refer to any other time than the top of an hour / o 'clock. Refreshing to learn that I may learn something new about something as old as Time.


    Does it matter if ちょうど comes before or after the time? I put it before and it was marked correct. Which is more natural?


    Good question! Both are indeed correct, and the difference between having it before or after is largely negligible.

    I checked with my partner (a native Japanese speaker) about the difference, and after a fair bit of back and forth, she concedes that there is an ever-so-slight difference in emphasis and which one would seem more or less natural depended on the situation, but she had a hard time articulating a consistent, meaningful rule to follow.


    The answer "It is exactly nine and a half" is marked as wrong.


    This is not how you say the time in English. It’s either half past nine or nine thirty.


    ちょっと: a little ちょうど: exactly, just right

    Is this correct?


    Are kanji numbers more common in Japanese? In Hiragana 2 (or 1, I can't remember which), we're taught how to write them in Hiragana.

    However, in Time (which is what this is part of) we're taught the kanji versions of these. Do Japanese people use kanji for time and nothing else?

    Also, sorry if I'm asking too many questions, but do Japanese people say "half past"?


    Kanji and arabic numerals (1,2,3) are typically used for writing numbers in Japanese.
    The hiragana lessons teach you the numbers written in hiragana in order to help you practice learning how to read the kana while also having you learn some simple vocab early on. They show you how a word is pronounced and how a word would be spelled phonetically before introducing you to the more complicated way of writing them.

    半 is the kanji for "half" and is generally used instead of the number 三十分 "30 minutes", so technically this sentence reads "it is exactly half past nine"


    This makes sense.

    Thanks for your help.


    Why is the ど particle used here?


    It isn't a particle; ちょうど(丁度)is a single word, meaning "exactly/precisely".


    I'm not an English native speaker, but for me "It's exactly half past nine" sounds really weird. Why we need "exactly/sharp" here?


    If your plane is taking off at 9:30 exactly and you turn up at 9:35 then you will know the difference.


    As a native English speaker, this sentence is not something I would use often. It is not wrong, but think I would most likely say this if I was setting my watch (e.g. at the beginning or end of daylight saving); or if I was wanting to confirm a particular time. However, I might tell someone who is habitually late, that a particular event starts at 9:30 exactly, or that a bus/plane leaves at 9:30 exactly, or "make sure you are at the venue at 9:30 exactly". Of course this is not the same sentence structure, and I do not know how I would write this in Japanese.


    Maybe it depends on your flavo(u)r of English. I'm an Australian native English speaker, and "It's exactly half past nine" sounds completely natural to me. If someone asked you what time it was, and you saw either the minute hand was lined up exactly with the 6 or the display on your watch/clock said "9:30" (not "9:29" or "9:31"), I would not at all be surprised to hear you say "It's exactly half past nine". Maybe it's just Australians, but I wouldn't be surprised to hear someone say "It's exactly 9:29" either - like, "cool, thank you for your precision".


    What is the difference between using Nana instead of shichi for 7?


    Welcome to the wonderful world of Japanese numbers, where the pronunciation varies depending on what is being counted.


    it was wrote in an other lecture for like 9:09 or so (not sure) that 分 is used when u write with minutes. so can someone explain me why it isnt used here?


    Because here they're not giving a number of minutes, they're giving the symbol for 'half'. So it's like half past nine, rather than nine thirty. It means the same thing, but if you used 九時三十分 then that would be nine hours and thirty minutes, but they, like us, often use the equivalent of 9 hours and a half, or half past nine.


    No fum at the end of 30?


    No 30 for there to be a fun at the end of.


    What does chiyougo mean??


    ちょうど is pronounced "choudo" and it means "exactly, precisely, just right".


    Isn't 半 only applicable for time? If so, shouldn't it instead be translated as half past?


    It's used for many other things besides time. It means "half" or "semi-", so there are a lot of potential applications for it, e.g. "half price" 額, "half moon" 月, "semiconductor" 導体, "hemisphere" 球, etc.

    Even within the context of time though, you can't always translate it as "half past". For example: "half a day" 日, "one and a half years old" 一歳, etc.

    In this particular sentence though, it should be allowed to be translated as "half past", but it's not necessarily any more correct than "nine thirty"


    I put "きゅう時半ちょうどです", what was wrong? Does きゅう have to be 九?


    "九" in this case is pronounced "く". If you choose to write it in hiragana, use "く".


    Wouldn't it be fair to translate this as "It is now 9:30"? Whenever I've heard that (usually automated) it means that it is 9:30 at this very moment, which would fit the meaning if I understand right.


    No, it's not the same thing. ちょうど means "exactly" or "precisely". It doesn't inherently have any connection to "now".

    In context, it definitely can mean "it is 9:30 at this very moment", but it can equally mean "it is 9:30 at exactly any other specific moment". For example, A: what time is the train supposed to arrive? B: 九時半ちょうどです.

    I would argue that, for these learning exercises, "it is now 9:30" is not a correct answer.


    Sometimes 九 is pronounced ku and sometimes kyu, why?


    Japanese kanji almost always have more than one pronunciation, also called "reading", and the correct pronunciation depends on the context the kanji appears in.

    In 「九時半」, the character 九 is always pronounced 【く】, but when read on its own and in some other kanji combinations, it's always pronounced 【きゅう】. It's just a result of the way Japanese evolved as a language.

    Duolingo's TTS isn't sophisticated enough to recognize which pronunciation to use when, so that's probably why it will sound different sometimes, even in the same sentence.


    I now have read several similar examples to 'it is nine thirty sharp' as an alternative structure in the Duolingo lessons. In fact, it is not quite the same as using 'exactly'. If someone asks me the time, it would be correct grammar to say: 'It is 9:30 exactly or 'It is exactly 9:30'. It would be odd to say: 'It is 9:30 sharp'. You would certainly never say: 'It is sharp 9:30'. 'Sharp' is used if you want to say something occurs at 9:30 sharp. e.g. 'The train leaves at 9:30 sharp. The concert starts at 9:30 sharp.' 'The football always starts at 9:30 sharp'. It is not really natural to say 'it is 9:30 sharp' unless you have a context, such as you are replying to someone who has asked when something is to happen. I would usually add the word 'at' - it just sounds better. I am a native speaker of (Australian) English. The use of 'sharp' suggests the person needs to be somewhere on time. It is not a natural response in English to someone asking you the time.


    I'm also an Australian native English speaker, and you might be right, but I feel like you're overthinking it. I look at it the other way: if someone said "It is 9:30 sharp" when I asked them the time, I wouldn't do a double-take/call them out for using unnatural English. I would parse it exactly the same as "It is 9:30 exactly".

    Perhaps that's how you prefer to separate them, and that's completely fine, but I don't feel there is any distinction between the two in this context.


    I'm not getting 'haan' here will somebody explain this to me


    I'm not understanding this sentence


    "It is 9:30 sharp" or "It is exactly 9:30"

    九時 - kuji - 9:00 (nine)(hour)
    半 - han - "half" (nine and a half hours, or half past nine, 9:30)
    ちょうど - choudo - exactly/precisely/sharp (9:30 sharp / exactly 9:30)
    です - is


    I used sharp instead of "exactly" why it didn't accepted my answer, gosh even I'm not an expert in Japanese but I've tested Duolingo and it has many faults .


    What was your full answer? I've always used "sharp" instead of "exactly" and have never gotten it rejected..


    Why is there no 分 after the 半? Is just one of the quirks of the language?


    半 means "half" and follows the hour for "x hour and half"
    半分 (han-pun) means "half a minute"


    Is putting "exactly" in the middle strictly correct for Japanese? Because I'm a native English speaker and i put exactly at the end of similar sentences all the time. It could just be my dialect but can someone clarify me on this?


    Sorry if my answer is not what you wanted. I just wanted to say that I would not recommend translating sentences from your native language into a foreign language. If there are any coincedences, it is by chance. Languages tend to develop independently. Just take Japanese phrases as they are. They are not "translations" from English.


    why is using approximately not right


    Approximately means around or about, but ちょうど means exact. Like if you give a cashier the exact bill amount, they'll say 「ちょうどですね」and only hand you the receipt back because you won't have any change.


    approximately isn't the same as exactly


    Isn't it a bit excessive?


    Using numerals (930) should be accepted. Also now and exactly are interchangeable


    Numerals are accepted, but "now" and "exactly" aren't the same.

    As JoshuaLore answered already above:

    No, it's not the same thing. ちょうど means "exactly" or "precisely". It doesn't inherently have any connection to "now".

    In context, it definitely can mean "it is 9:30 at this very moment", but it can equally mean "it is 9:30 at exactly any other specific moment". For example, A: what time is the train supposed to arrive? B: 九時半ちょうどです.

    I would argue that, for these learning exercises, "it is now 9:30" is not a correct answer.


    It's kinda confusing to switch between numbers and words... I guess it is helpful though cause you can learn both ways to type the numbers.


    It is slightly unfair towards non mother tongue English people not to accept "right now" instead of sharp.


    "right now" and "sharp" have different meanings though and translate differently.

    "now/right now" 今 is a relative temporal noun; it describes its relationship to the current time. Something is happening "right now at this moment" rather than "earlier" or "later".

    "sharp/exactly" ちょうど focuses on the amount and just means that the time is no more or no less than the stated time. You can meet later at "9:30 sharp" but you can't meet later at "9:30 right now", or switching to past tense it can be "It was 9:30 sharp" but never "It was 9:30 now"


    So 9:30 doesn't work


    Doesn't accept 9:30...


    Use 9:30 y no lo tomó en cuenta deberian anexarlo

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