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  5. "It is two o'clock right now."

"It is two o'clock right now."


June 15, 2017



I'm a beginner, so why is 今 in front of ニ時?


It implies that you're talking about right now. Else you just say "two o'clock"


There is a category for words like these that can be said alone but also go in front of the sentences. It a grammar thing. I cant remember what it is called. But i believe hey! Is another one.


It is certainly not an interjection. An interjection is a word that, roughly speaking, shows a sudden expression of feeling, like, "Oh!" or, "Wow!"


Interjection? But in this sentence if anything 今 is an adverb, or a topic with an implied topic particle.


“Ima” Mean “Today” So “Ima wa” Mean “About today...” In Japanese sentences, Topic must always be in first in sentences. (Spoiler: you will probably face sentences with no “wa” in it. Don’t worry, that just mean the topic is implicit.)


今日 kyou means today


今 means now/right now.


Think of the literal translation. "Right now, it is 2 o'clock."


I think that means that the sentence is about what is happening RIGHT NOW and that didn't happened in the past. In japanese, "desu" means "is" but also "was", like all verbs in japanese. (i'm not 100% sure).


im almost at the end i can help you


Can the は be omitted in this sentence (今二時です。)? And if it is omitted, does it lower the formality of the sentence?


That's correct. It does lower the formality, but it is still acceptable.


Well I got it wrong omitting wa, and am now super confused why it would be required. That wasn't really explained to me.


If you get asked about the clock and want to answer casually, you can just answer 今2時


Why can't I use 分?


Being a beginner myself, I can't say this with absolute certainty. However, I think that 分 means minutes while 時 (which is what I assume is what you're talking about) means hours, or o'clock if you want a literal translation. Thus, you can't use 分 because then you'd be saying that "it's six minutes right now" which doesn't make sense. Sorry for the long explanation, I hope this helps!


This is a good explanation. For minutes, you sometimes use "pun" instead of "fun" but it depends on the number. For more help, see Duolingo's guide by tapping/clicking this skill and hitting the lightbulb icon ^_^


Because that goes after the minute. 時 goes after the hour number.


I answered without the wa and got it correct. 今六時です. Is this wrong though?


Considering that the time is 2 and not 6, I'm under the impression that that part of the sentence is wrong... but as far as grammar matters, it sounds correct even without the wa. Just a tad bit more informal.


今 (ima) can also be an adverb, and adverbs don't need particles. You can read about time expressions that are correct with or without a particle at Maggie-sensei.


Not when you're putting it like "今、六時です。"




Can someone please translate this? (I would be super grateful if you can also break it down to help me learn)


[Saying "二時今" is also correct, right? However, I got it wrong for answering that way.] This is a loose translation if im not mistaken. I'm sure someone else may have a better interpretation. The following explanation is not the most detailed, but it helps break it down.

In this instance と = the particle denoting what is being said, kind of like a closing quotation mark, and 言うこと(iukoto) = saying. も = a particle that often means too/also. 正しです(tadashidesu) = correct, and ね = a particle at the end of sentences often meant to add an emphasis of agreement as if to say "right?/do you not agree?" but it can also be understood as being used to ask an opinion. しかし = however. The "x" that follows is commonly used to symbol wrong/incorrect (in the west check marks usually symbol right/correct but in japan a "o" symbol is often used instead). を = the object particle, and 貰いました(moraimashita) = recieved. In my translation, "for answering that way" kinda has to be inferred for the sentence make sense.

I hope this helps


that was super helpful tho





Apologies if I got either my Japanese here or my actual answer wrong; I am rather rusty.


when should we put は after 今? ive been studying japanese for a year or so but never noticed this.


I'm curious, why is は there? Its signals a subject/topic, so why would 今 have that particle? I feel like I'm missing something.


It makes 今 the topic, so it gets emphasized. I think the contributors have tried to capture that emphasis by translating it as "right now". Speaking about now, it's 2:00. Without the は, 今 is just an adverb performing its normal function in the sentence.


Ive done this one as both 今は and just 今 and they were both accepted, whats the difference and why are they both right?


I took a few semesters of Japanese in school and am refreshing with Duolingo… I found an old dusty box with my notes and found examples like


And a handwritten hand-out from sensei also has …は、 in many places. Is a comma (読点) after a topic in は unusual or old-fashioned? Writer’s choice? Or is it wrong? (私の日本語の先生 was an artist, not a Japanese language educator by training, so she may have been eccentric or even incorrect…)

(Obviously (?), if you use 今 without the は, the comma is not just allowed but preferred.)


How is this pronounced?


Ima wa niji desu.


Why is there no "Ni" after the time?


I think "ni" is used when you're saying something along the lines of "this happened AT two o'clock". For example 「八時にあさごはんをたべました」(I ate breakfast at eight)


You're right, に tells what time something happened. When we just say what time it is, we don't use に.


2ji desu.

It's 2:00.


2ji ni tabemasu.

I'll eat at 2:00.


So I would say the object is に時 in this sentence, not 今, so shouldn't the は be placed after に時 instead? Or do I have my grammar wrong?


です is like the English verb "to be", so it doesn't take an object, you have a subject and a complement.

Think of the translation as "now is 2:00", where "now" is the subject and "2:00" is the complement that identifies the subject. The Japanese works very similarly to this construction, where 今 (ima) is the subject/topic and 2時 (2ji) is the complement.

This page has a nice visual at the top.


No, the object is the now. The "now" has the state of being "two o clock"


I think you mean that 'now' 今 is the subject, not object. To be precise it's the topic. The particle は goes after the topic. The direct object of a verb would have を after it followed by the verb.


I'm confused now... Should I put は after 今 or not? Both counts as correct.


Why is 分 sometimes there and sometimes not


分 is for minutes.

2時です。(2ji desu)

It's 2:00. (There are 0 minutes, so we don't need to use 分.)

2時5分です。(2ji 5fun desu)

It's 2:05. (It's 5 minutes past 2:00.)


If I remove 今は, is it wrong?


The sentence is "It is two o'clock right now", so without 今は, there's no translation of "now" and you're just saying that it's 2:00.


But it's implied at any point, if you're saying "It's 2 o'clock", you're talking about right now. I've tried this for the other exercises ( translating 今は一時ですas "it's one o'clock", and it was accepted. Not sure why it's rejected here)


You can submit an error report. Questions on duolingo have no connection to one another and every alternative answer is individually entered for each question.


I answered 今六時です (without the は), and it is wrong. And i didnt understand. So what is the は ? HELP please


It's wrong because the question is for two o'clock, not six o'clock. The は is optional, technically it makes the sentence more like "as for now, it's 2 o'clock".


Will it be correct? 二時今はです。


です needs to be connected with a noun or adjective. The noun in this sentence is 二時, so you can't put something in between them. It has to be 今は二時です.


No. You're talking about "right now." Think about "Right now it's 2 o'clock." That's the best I can explain right now.


Why is there a ka here and noy in other sentences?


There is no "ka" here, did you possibly mean は (wa)?


Does anyone know why は is needed after 今? Isn't は used to mark the subject? So why is it used after 今?


Because you're talking about "right now".


Isn't たった今 the standard way to say "right now"? Why wouldn't it be accepted?


たった今 means "just now", which might seem like it means the same thing, but when you look at it grammatically, I don't think it works in this sentence. You use たった今 to express that someone has just done something.

Examples from Tanoshii Japanese:


She came home just now.


She went out just now.


As a matter of fact, I've only just arrived myself.

The たった今 shows that an action has been completed. This sentence is describing a state. No action has been completed. It is currently 2:00. Maybe you could say たった今2時になった (tattaima niji ni natta), but the nuance is a little different.


Now I am going to get 「たった今」 mixed up with 「ただいま」!


I am noob, so correct me if im wring but I think now, i get it. Basically "今は" is one word meaning "right now." you cant use one character without the other."です" meaning "it is" is also that way. you cant use one character without the other because it might change the meaning. "二" means "second" or "two." "時" means "hour." "分" means "minute(s)." When stating time, you have to go by this formula "right now"+#+ Hours(+#+minute(s))+"it is" in japanese it would be 今は+#時(+#分). You dont state the minutes if they are at 0.


I am also a noob, but most of that sounds right to me, apart from the bit saying that 今は is one word.

今 is a word meaning "now", and は is a particle that follows the topic of the sentence.

I don't think that 二 can mean "second", either. I think it just means "two".


I don't think you need "は" for time if it's relative.


That's correct. Maggie-sensei gives the following examples:

Ex. 今、何時ですか?

= Ima, nanji desu ka?

= What time is it now?

Ex. 今、3時です。

= Ima, sanji desu.

= It’s three o’clock now.


im almost at the end of Japan


Why I can't use fungi


See...I used 'pun' and it said I didn't need it, but when I DON'T use it, it says I needed to.



If you check the previous comments, it seems like there are already some answers to your question here:



If those answers don't help, let us know.


I put, 「今二時です。」 and this was accepted, although, 「今は二時です。」 was given as another correct solution.

Does this mean that the particle は is optional in this sentence, and if so, why?

Edit: Oops. I see that this has already been asked a few times. (I can't always tell when all the comments have been loaded, so I sometimes think something hasn't been asked, when it has.)

The answer seems to be that in the sentence I submitted, 今 is an adverb, so it doesn't take a particle, and that in the suggested solution, 今 is a noun, so it does.

I suppose that "now" can be both an adverb and a noun in English, too, because you can say, "Now is a good time to do Duolingo," in which "now" is a noun, and you can also say, "I am going to do Duolingo, now," in which "now" is an adverb.

Does that sound right?


Yes, you're right. If you check in a Japanese dictionary, 今 is classified as [名](副詞的にも用いる), meaning it's a noun but can be used as an adverb.

Maggie-sensei explains a little about using は with adverbs of time:

So you can simply emphasize a certain period of time, a certain day, a certain month, a certain week, or a certain year by using は ( = wa). Or you can show contrast when you do something special at a particular time period.

By adding は ( = wa) , you can express tomorrow is a special day or doing something different on that day.

Ex. 今日、学校に行きます。

= Kyou, gakkou ni ikimasu.

= I will go to school today.

(regular statement)

↓Emphasizing 今日( = kyou) today


= Kyou wa, gakkou ni ikimasu.

Ex. 今日、学校は休みです。

= Kyou, gakkou wa yasumi desu.

= There are no classes at school today.

(regular statement)

Ex. 今日は学校は休みです。

= Kyou wa gakkou wa yasumi desu.

= There are no classes at school today.

(You usually have a class on other days but not today.)


Thank you. This is getting very complicated!


Wouldn't 二時ですbe acceptable?


Since the English we're being asked to translate is "it's 2:00 right now", it's better to include a translation for "right now".

When saying the time in English, it's natural to say "it's 2:00". If you say "it's 2:00 right now", you're putting emphasis that now is 2:00.

In Japanese, it's natural to state the time as 二時です (niji desu, it's 2:00). If you want to emphasize that now is 2:00, though, then you say 今は2時です (ima wa niji desu).


I see, thank you very much for the information! It makes more sense now


Can です be dropped in this sentence?


In casual conversation, yes, but in a proper, grammatically correct sentence, no. A noun needs to be followed by です or the more casual だ.


sorry, maybe this is a silly question, why I cannot say 今はニ時ちょうどです as they used ちょうど in some others to mean "exatly"...

  • 今はニ時ちょうどです 。

It's exactly 2:00 right now.

  • 今は二時です。

It's 2:00 right now.

I would say that both sentences have similar meanings, but that using ちょうど puts more emphasis on the precision of the time, so without the word "exactly" in the English sentence, I think it would be better not to include ちょうど in this case.


So in English the "now/right now" is implied and you would usually only say "it's 2 o'clock right now" if there's some other time you could be referring to. Is it simmilar in Japanese, where "今は" is only used if it would otherwise be unclear what the topic is? Or is it more common to use "今" even when the topic is clear?


I didn't understand the translation of now in Japanese.


For anyone confused: いま

Is Right now. So whenever you see that symbol, they are talkn about RIGHT NOW


How do you know when, and when not to put "fu" "n" at the end of the times?


If you check some of the previous comments, it's been discussed above:



Hopefully those answer your question.


たった今 not accepted for "right now", fairly sure that's how it's usually translated?


why do when do we use "分"


分 means " minute" you use it when talking about any specific minute. Like if something will take 5 minutes to make or if the time is 5:10.

It may not be all that important to specify in conversation since japanese is all about context but it'll be critically important if you don't have a strong grasp of the language.

A easy example. Gohan. Gohan means steamed rice. It could also be used to represent a time of day/ meal ( asaGohan= breakfast). Now, Go means 5 and Han means half, so technically you could say gohan means 5:30. In context, a person with a strong grasp of you and the language may understand what you're saying but since Gohan also can have a time of day meaning, you'd confuse most people by not specifying.


Hey Duo, the 'ha' particle is pronounced 'wa' in this context. Would be nice to fix this up for beginners


When 'ha' is after the subject it is pronounced 'wa'.


Exactly, it is supposed to be pronounced as 'wa'. But in this question it was wrongly pronounced as 'ha'. I believe this is what annicorletto was trying to say.
This has been an issue since the update with the new voices. It is a big problem for beginners who may not know its supposed to be pronounced as 'wa', they'll hear 'ha' and think that's how its supposed to sound, when it isn't. You can flag the question afer you answer it and report the mistake in the audio to duolingo. Hopefully duolingo will fix this issue soon.

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