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  5. "你星期六有空吗?"


Translation:Are you free on Saturday?

November 18, 2017



Do you have free time on Saturday? has the same meaning


Or “Do you have any free time on Saturday?” ?


"Do you have time on Saturday" should be accepted as well


Sometimes they focus too much on 'meaning' translation, making it harder to test. "Are you free on Saturday" is not a direct translation. It should be "Do you have free time on Saturday". In this case, a direct translation would be preferred and easier to understand for english speakers.


"Will you be available on Saturday?" should be accepted but did not work. It means the same thing, despite seeming to be different in verb tense.


空 is first tone or 4th tone? When I hear it individually, it sounds like first tone, but in the sentence, it sounds like 4th tone. When I paste this character into google translate to see the pinyin, it shows 4th tone.

Also, "Are you available (on) Saturday" should work.


Should be 4th tone in this context.


Does anyone know why Mandarin doesn't call the days of the week using the planet names like Japanese and Chinese do? (月曜日,火曜日 etc.) I mean, the fact that they use them surely means that these names existed in old Chinese, right?


Oops.. I meant "like Japanese and Korean do".


Yes, Chinese used the translation 月曜日,火曜日 etc. at first, and then changed to 星期一, 星期二 etc. only in the early 20th century.


I was trying to understand why your answer was downvoted.

Then I realised that days of the week are related to the Julian calendar. Older Chinese texts would refer to days of the month (lunisolar calendar - often just called a lunar calendar) and did not need days of the week at all. There have been a lot of iterations in between of course, including some trial of 10 day weeks etc, but ultimately week days are not a big part of longer term Chinese history.

The idea of naming days of the week after the planets is a ‘western’ thing - think Roman or Greek (it’s possible the 7 day week comes from Babylon but naming each of the days of the week after planets was more Roman/Greek?). They do exist in Chinese, Japanese and Korean but only because they are derived from / refer to calendars which use weeks.


How do we differentiate this from "are you free on Saturdays?" i.e. they might reply "I'm not usually busy on Saturdays"


This sentence doesn’t differentiate. It could mean either.

If you wanted to make the distinction you could say 你这个星期六有空吗?(Are you free this Saturday?) vs 你通常星期六有空吗? (Are you usually free on Saturdays?)

[NB I’ve personally heard 常常 (often) used here more than 通常(usually) in conversations I’ve had]

But generally it’s ok to be a bit ambiguous. Context and further discussion cover it.

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