"先週、日本の友だちに電話をかけました。"

Translation:Last week, I called my Japanese friend on the phone.

June 21, 2017

84 Comments


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

Why friends is wrong? They didnt specify the number of friends he/she called :/

October 8, 2017

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

"Last week I called my Japanese friends." was accepted.

August 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FAlter5

I already reported it multiple times.

March 19, 2018

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

Would be "tomodachi tachi".

June 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FAlter5

There is no difference between singular/plural in Japanese. x-tachi or x-ra can be understood as "a group around x" or "a group of x", so it is kind of plural. But without it, it can still mean both one or more than one.

June 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DerrickMcClure1

The first time I heard a Japanese friend using a form like "Tanaka San-tati" it took me a minute to understand that it meant "Mr Tanaka and his family"

June 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Joe264823

No because tomodachi already has Tachi in the name, it's the dachi.

Otherwise it would be perfectly possible.

February 21, 2019

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

Could this also mean "I called my Japanese friend" instead of "I called my friend in Japan"?

June 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Fork8

Technically. But I think this would rather be 日本人の友だち, otherwise it sounds like the friend is somehow officially representing the country of Japan.

June 24, 2017

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

It's not only 日本人の友だち. It should be changed to 日本にいる友だち.

日本の友だち is very unclear Japanese. The meaning is friends in Japan, including foreigners in Japan.

日本の外国人(がいこくじん) means foreigners in Japan. → 日本にいる外国人

日本の日本人の友だち means Japanese friends in Japan. → 日本にいる日本人の友だち

April 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndyCardoso23

What's the にいる part means exactly?

February 14, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John863934

Literally 'lives in'.

July 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LM0Uxa

What about "my friend from japan"?

July 9, 2017

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

That's ambiguous in English

January 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chidz5

日本 で 友達 (my friend in Japan) 日本 から 友達 (my friend from Japan - pretty sure kara is ok to use here)

January 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/1036832929

What would "friend in Japan" be as opposed to "friend from Japan" versus 日本人の友だち (Japanese friend)?

April 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FAlter5

I would say the options you have are 日本の友達 (lit. Japan's friend - friend from Japan) and 日本人の友達 (lit. Japanese('s) friend). In some cases, the even more literal 日本から友達 might be ok for friend from Japan.

April 5, 2018

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

I was about to say 日本に いる 友達 but I see that I have already commented as much almost directly below. This literally means my friend (who is or being) in Japan.

April 6, 2018

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

YES.

July 12, 2017

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

My friend in Japan would be nihon ni iru tomodachi.

July 12, 2017

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

Very clumsy translation....

July 24, 2017

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

It IS a clumsy Japanese translation - it would be more natural to say either nihonjin no tomodachi - my japanese friend or nihon ni iru tomodachi - my friend (who is) in Japan.

July 24, 2017

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

Im having issues with particles here. Wouldnt In Japan be 日本に and from Japan 日本で?Its been a while since I studied Japanese and Im trying to figure out why I got "Friend from Japan" marked wrong

July 6, 2017

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

Nihon de - you are in Japan in general, the general area of Japan - you're not pointing out where you are in Japan specifically or pointing out specifically that you are in JAPAN as opposed to some other country. Nihon ni - you want to specifically point out that you are in the country of Japan, as opposed to perhaps another country.

July 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lottie679314

I feel the same about this one. It is quiye confusing and needs to be clearer.

March 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aorja1

I put last week I phoned my japanese friend surely this ought to be accepted also

August 1, 2017

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

Did you try putting in the comma after "last week"? The English translation will otherwise assume you will put that phrase last (after all, the natural inclination in English syntax is to place time expressions last).

August 8, 2017

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

Duo translation ignores punctuation marks. Also time doesn't need to be last in a sentence. "I called my friend in Japan last week " and "Last week I called my friend in Japan " are both normal ways of using English. Neither is more usual or correct.

October 24, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Elum224

Why is "rang" not accepted?

December 14, 2018

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

I dont understand 日本の友だち... for me it doesnt sound right. Can someone explain?

July 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DEcobra11

I don't know if it is similar in Portuguese, but in Spanish: amigo de Japón.

September 24, 2017

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

That's the point, amigo de Japón = friend from Japan, not friend in Japan :/

November 7, 2017

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

I agree, 日本のともだち sounds like "a friend of Japan". How would one say that if this means a friend IN Japan?

October 22, 2017

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

That's correct. の is a possesive particle, so 日本の友達 means friends from japan or friends OF Japan.

December 28, 2017

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

It's strange. It doesn't make sense, and that's the general consensus. I got this question right and I needed to come here to comment on it.

October 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/daniel.cul

can someone please explain what determines the singular and plural form of friend(s)? 友だち vs ??

August 4, 2017

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

友達 is both plural and singular. The context is what will inform you of which it is. 私たちは友達です。"We are friends". Could refer to a group of more than 2 people. あなたは(私の)友達です。Singular, "You are my friend." 'My' in parentheses since 私 is usually inferred and omitted.

August 6, 2017

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

The problem is, how can one determine in this example sentence if 友達 is plural or singular? Semantically speaking, it is possible to call one friend or multiple friends within the timespan of a week.

August 8, 2017

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

Or even at the same time with some conference call software actually

November 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John863934

友達たち specifically refers to multiple friends.

July 12, 2019

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

Is there be a distinction between phone and telephone in Japanese? Got marked wrong for using one over the other

November 26, 2017

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

I think you should flag this .

January 21, 2018

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

I answered this one like an old person and got it wrong. "Last week, I phoned my friend in Japan." It makes sense in English...

December 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WiseOwl1006

How do you know if it is plural or not, like in "friends"?

December 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DerrickMcClure1

"I telephoned my Japanese friend" certainly is not wrong!

November 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NickMarsto1

Where to start? I offered: " I called a Japanese friend on the telephone last week." , which may not be the most elegant translation, but in essence is correct. Nevertheless, it was rejected as a proper answer. The given answer however, is ridiculous. 日本の友だちい literally: "Japan's friend", which I suggest is best translated as "a Japanese friend " is not the same thing as "my friend in Japan". In the original sentence there is no direct indication that the friend is indeed in Japan, but it does do more than to suggest that he is 日本人 . If that is what was intended and for the avoidance of doubt, it would probably be better phrased as わたしの日本に友だち . On that (mis) construction there is no particular reason why the friend should be "of Japan" i.e. Japanese, but he would at least be in Japan. While I am at it , why is "phone " preferable to "telephone"? I know that this is in beta, but this is starting to feel as ropey as all Hell.

December 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jameswong138631

I really hate these typed translations because it is so hard guessing the right answer. Like, what's the difference between this "correct" answer and what I typed? "last week, i called my friend in Japan by telephone"

December 16, 2017

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

I am not English speaker, can someone answer me why my answer is wrong? "Last week I called my friends from Japan."

December 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DerrickMcClure1

That sentence is ambiguous: it could mean that YOU were in Japan and called from there to speak to friends who were someplace else.

December 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jpappas60

Could this be ok: "last week I talked on the phone with my Japanese friends". How do you distinguish snigular or plural friends?

January 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/koichi81957

"i phoned..." is equivalent

January 27, 2018

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

I translated it with "a Japanese friend" instead of "my Japanese friend" and got an error. Isn't "a" correct aswell or is tomodachi that specific?

February 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ciaran781601

why is particle に here after the friend, i thought it ment location

June 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BenJammin234988

"I called my friend in Japan last week" was accepted.

October 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/99TjNs

Broken question

January 26, 2019

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

just a minute ago the right answer was " I called my friend in Japan..." now it says "my Japanese friend". That does not make any sense, does it? I thought 日本人would be Japanese person...?

March 15, 2019

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

r/japancirclejerk intensifies

March 31, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brucio2

What does exactly かけました mean here? Wouldn't 電話しました mean "called"?

April 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DashAlex22

Isn’t this a potential form of the verb 書きます? If so, this should be translated as “I could call...”

June 8, 2019

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

No. 書く means to write. It is unrelated.

June 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DashAlex22

Aaaaa, now I understand. Thanks for explaining!

July 11, 2019

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

Awesome secret bug fills in the answer for me XD

September 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jameswong138631

what's wrong with "I talked to my friend in Japan by telephone?"

December 16, 2017

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

Ok. Fix it so it accepts "telephone" as well as "phone."

December 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/QB2U2ukj

first time, didn't accept last week, I called my friend in Japan on the telephone saying telephone should be phone, second time around "last week, I phoned my japanese friend" it responds "Last week, I called my Japanese friend ." Someone needs to teach this thing real English. (yes I reported both, just venting)

January 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/koichi81957

'My friend in Japan' is suitably ambiguous... since we don't know if the friend is japanese or not, or even if he/she is in japan at this time.

January 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michelle371554

How can I tell if it means friends or friend?

February 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tangolulu85

Technically both should be accepted since tomodachi is both singular and plural and the context of the sentence doesn't give you context clues for how many friend(s) you are calling

February 25, 2018

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

FYI, I tried "I phoned my friend in Japan." DL didn't accept it.

February 6, 2018

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

Because you forgot to translate 先週

February 6, 2018

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

Thanks for your reply, AnaLydiate. I didn't forget the Last week part, I just didn't include it in my cautionary comment above. However, I think I figured out that to (tele)phone might be something along the lines of 電話denwa でde 呼び出すyobidasu (?) where yobi might mean to call, but I have no clue about dasu. I'm going to quit experimenting around on this one and just go with what DL suggests.

February 6, 2018

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

dasu - to go out/send out. yobidasu to call out. hakidasu to throw up.

February 7, 2018

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

Thanks for the clarification, AnaLydiate.

February 12, 2018

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

You're welcome. Glad to help.

February 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Abstract14

"Last week, I called my japanese friend." Would be the best and most natural translation. due to "denwa wo kakeru" means "to make a call" / "to call" thus "denwa wo kakemashita" = "i called" so 「友達に電話を掛けました」 means "I called my friend". Hope this helps.

February 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoeMartin271676

In English, what's wrong with: I called over the phone my friend in Japan. Sounds goid to me but it was not accepted

August 13, 2017

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

There's a lot in the Japanese that just doesn't translate into natural sounding English. Also if you included all the information that is in the Japanese sentence into an English translation a lot of it would be overstating or stating the obvious eg. you wouldn't say "I call over the phone" - for one, it sounds like you are literally yelling at someone over the top of your phone. Also in English you wouldn't say you're calling someone on the phone because it's overstating - if you say I called my friend or I gave my friend a call, people already know that you called them on a phone - they are not imagining you calling to them across a room or across a park or at the gym - it's understood that when you say you called a friend in this context that you called them on a phone so there's no need to include that information - like saying I hammered the nail in with a hammer or I vacuumed with a vacuum cleaner. And as for 日本 の 友達 I think the most accurate and natural sounding English translation for this is probably (my) Japanese friend because my friend in Japan would be 日本 に いる 友達 (nihon ni iru tomodachi). Not all Japanese (or any language for that matter) translates perfectly into English and you just have to choose the right balance of what information to include and what makes for a natural sounding English translation while still conveying what the Japanese says. There's also the matter of different word orders for different languages. In English the basic word order is subject verb object, in Japanese it is subject object verb.

August 13, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoeMartin271676

*good

August 13, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoeMartin271676

Leading with Last week. ( sorry but there seens to be no way to edit a typo once you post on the app)

August 13, 2017

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

"Last week, i dialed the phone number of my Japanese friend" was reported as wrong answer. Duo lingo most with on these subtle differences as these become frustrating

June 21, 2017

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

denwa o kakeru - to call someone (on a phone)

July 24, 2017

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

It's not dialled the phone number, phone number is 電話番号, phone is just 電話

June 21, 2017
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