"他们星期六会八点吃晚饭。"

Translation:They will have dinner at 8 on Saturday.

November 21, 2017

65 Comments
This discussion is locked.


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

Is it natural to split the day and the time apart with 会 in between like that?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amy.SH

It's not "natural" to say like this but we can understand. We usually say it as "他们会在星期六八点吃晚饭。"


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

But can you put 会 before 吃晚饭 as in "他们星期六八点会吃晚饭"?


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

This is what I'd have said


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

@amy: Your 会在 doubles my confusion just after I've finally mastered the subject + time + verb and time + time + verb patterns.

Note that another response suggests that NEITHER 会 NOR 在 is necessary.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Audacity1

I always learned sentence structure as subject + time + place + verb which hasn't given me any issues so far but the placement of 会 is confusing me too to be honest. It seems like you can just get a bit creative with where you place it but correct me if I'm wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Audacity1

Oh and by adding 在 i think the sentence goes from "we will eat dinner..." To "we will be eating dinner". Which does sound more natural. But again I'm not a native speaker I'm only speculating.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/richard711603

I think using 在 before time, is considered 'at' or 'on'.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/astucky21

会,能,想,必须,肯,etc are all examples of modal verbs, and work a little differently in sentence structure. The first response in this thread linked here might be helpful in explaining it.


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

Firstly, I'm only a novice at Chinese, so while my English is acceptable, I cannot vouch for the accuracy of any Chinese interpretations layed out here. But I thought I'd share, so that hopefully some native speakers can provide better input.

What a lot of people don't understand is verb aspect. I encourage everyone to have a quick read up on it, because it will help you understand how we handle verbs. Simply, verb aspect describes the state of a verb relative to the reference point in time.

In English, verb aspect may be broken down like this; Simple aspect: "Yesterday I ran". This is the most basic aspect and provides no additional information. Progressive aspect: "Yesterday I was running". The action (running) was continuous/ongoing. Perfect aspect: "Yesterday I had run". Action was completed. Progressive Perfect aspect: "Yesterday I had been running". Action was continuous, but was completed as of the past reference point.

Note all these examples are past tense. Similar but different expressions exist for the other tenses.

So how does this relate to Chinese? Take for instance the word 了. Non native speakers often struggle with the idea that it does not indicate past tense. Because it doesn't. It indicates an action is completed. It indicates the "perfect aspect". We also have 在 which indicates an action is ongoing, which would correspond to progressive aspect.

In Chinese this MIGHT look like:

Simple: 昨天我吃饭 (Yesterday I ate) Perfect: 昨天我吃饭了 (Yesterday I had eaten) Progressive: 昨天我在吃饭 (Yesterday I was eating) Progressive Perfect: 昨天我在吃饭了 (Yesterday I had been eating)

Now I don't know if all of these structures actually exist in Chinese, but this might be one way of helping to understand the characters.

So looking at the example 她们会在星期六八点吃晚饭, we have 会 which indicates a future action that will be performed by the subject. Then we have 在 which indicates the action will be ongoing at the time specified.

So this translation would like something like:

"They will be eating dinner at 8 o'clock on Saturday." And this is our progressive aspect.

在 and 会 are two different words, and are clearly not mutually exclusive. If we left out 在 we'd have "will eat" instead. If we left out both, we'd still have "will eat", because the "will" is implied. Just because leaving out "will" sounds unnatural for English speakers, it doesn't mean it's the same for Chinese.

Don't get caught up in your grammar structures too much. There is a surprisingly large amount of grammar rules to any language, and there may not even be consensus amongst professionals, let alone amateurs on forums. Native speakers will also pad their sentences for better flow or accuracy. And even native speakers might not know what they're talking about. How many English speakers do know that know about verb aspect?

My main point would be, if you find yourself struggling with a grammatical concept, don't get too hung up on it. Be happy to forget about it and keep going. The most important thing is that you keep absorbing the language.


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

Hi! I'm a bit late on the topic but I've actually asked a Chinese friend to get her answer. Using 会 before 八点 makes the sentence focus on the fact that they are going to eat at 8. It's only a nuance but it can help understand that they are used to eat at 7 but they're going to eat at 8 on Saturday. Hope this helps


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bevic1

In the natural Chinese speaker, they will say "他們星期六晚上八點吃飯".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Audacity1

No because that sentence is a very general and almost robotic statement saying "they have dinner on Saturday at 8". You add 会 to write the sentence in the future tense "they will have dinner..." Though I'm not a native Chinese speaker I'm only speaking through observation so maybe someone who knows better can confirm or deny.


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

They continue to show a lack of flexibility in their answers in the English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RegWong1

It is totally illogical to intersperse 星期六 and 八点 with 会.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sora942232

In this sentence why 会 split the time chunk? is 他们星期六八点会吃饭 correct?


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

This is also correct. The placement of 会 has to do with emphasis. Whatever follows 会will be emphasized as the inevitable/future part.

"他们星期六会八点吃晚饭。" emphasizes something like, "yes, indeed, AT EIGHT, they will eat dinner."

Whereas "他们星期六八点会吃晚饭。" emphasizes the fact that they will be eating.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jkp269

Thank you so much for this explanation! It really helps with the nuance that Duolingo is using in the translation. Now that I am aware of this, I think it will help as I move through these exercises.


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

Can someone please reply if that's correct.


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

It is. I asked a Chinese friend and she told me the same thing.


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

That's what I put and was marked correct (29/04/2020). I'm very confused about past\future in Chinese!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ben-Sydney

I believe the 会 is establishing a confident expectation in the future. They WILL have dinner at six this coming Saturday (rather than dinnertime is usually 6pm on Saturdays). Is this right?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/talk2dream

"They will have dinner this Saturday at 8." Is the natural way to say this question in English and I don't understand why it's not accepted.


[deactivated user]

    I'm curious about the sentence construction. It is [they] [saturday] [will] [8:00] [eat] [dinner]. I expected [they] [saturday] [8:00] [will] [eat] [dinner]. My take-away from previous exercises was to keep time elements together and order them big-to-small (year, month, day, time).


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

    I think "On Saturday they will eat dinner at 8 o'clock" should be accepted too. The character "吃" is in the original Chinese.


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

    Also "On Saturday they will have dinner at 8" should be okay.


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

    "They will eat dinner on Saturday at 8." is accepted.


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

    Yes, but why not go all the way and translate 吃晩饭 as "dine" or even "sup"?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hsn626796

    Good point "dine"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/George792719

    Why doesn't it accept:

    "They will be having dinner at 8 on Saturday"

    I honestly don't see the difference


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

    他们星期六八点会吃晚饭。= "They WILL EAT DINNER at eight on Saturday." As though you're emphasizing (perhaps in response to a question of whether they are eating) that yes, they will in fact be eating dinner. 他们星期六会八点吃晚饭。= "They will eat dinner AT EIGHT on Saturday." As though you're emphasizing (perhaps in response to someone asking "when?") the time when they will be eating dinner.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/john27rg

    Question: I put "they can have dinner at eight o'clock on saturday". I was imagining trying to arrange dinner with friends. So I can imagine my partner saying that to me while she's on the phone with friends as we're trying to arrange a time. Is this correct?

    I'll remember for future tests that DL is emphasising the "will" sense of 会


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Joe020307

    They are going to have dinner at 8 on Saturday?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/froggie3802

    "They can eat dinner on Saturday at 6:00pm" as in they are trying to make plans with someone else and they are available then. 会 (huì) has many meanings. "Will" or "can are just two of them. Reported Sept 30, 2018


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

    No. 会 has the 'know how to' sense of 'can', but it does not have the 'have the opportunity' sense.

    In this sentence it means 'will', full stop.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/richard711603

    in the United States, we might also leave out the word 'on'. As saying '8 Saturday' implies 'on Saturday'. Just like saying 'he will be there at 8 Saturday'.


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

    I omitted the on and was marked incorrect. I think there is room for improvement for these lessons.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hsn626796

    It's not proper grammar unless you decide to put the "on" back


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

    How about "Saturday they will have dinner at 8" ?


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

    You don't need the on in English.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/roman2095

    I think you mean American English. It is normal elsewhere afaik.


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

    I wrote "On Saturday they're having dinner at eight o'clock". Marked wrong. Why? As long as I said Saturday and not Saturdays, I must be referring to a future Saturday.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/richard711603

    I think it is because Duo is implying 'will'(会) eat dinner, and expect us to use 'will'


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/George792719

    Oh come on, it won't take:

    "They will have dinner this Saturday at 8"

    I cannot see much difference


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

    Why they didn't accept "Saturday they will have dinner at 8" Anybody think it should be accepted?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/richard711603

    It is valid. Report it.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sora942232

    Can't i say "他们星期六八点会吃晚饭"?


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

    I believe one could also say "They will eat dinner Saturday evening at eight".


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

    I used "eat" instead of "have" -- shouldn't it be considered? :)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sue950221

    They are eating dinner at 8 on Saturday." should be an accepted translation, right?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Laurel189254

    can i also say 他们星期六八点会吃晚饭


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

    They will eat tea at 8 on saturday To me, dinner/lunch is a midday meal and tea is evening


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

    "Tea" meaning an evening meal is british. In Canada if you ask someone over for 'tea', that's what they get ...'tea' and maybe a cookie.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lukasz537165

    is this 会 REALLY necessary in this sentence??


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lukasz537165

    Is this 会 really necessary in this sentence at all? any native 词 告诉我, 谢谢!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MandarinStudent1

    Why cant the 八点 come before the 会?


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

    Another example of lack of flexibility... It's bothersome.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BtLB16

    What is the difference between the two hui s


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sue950221

    Would this also "他们星期六八点吃晚饭" be correct?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sue950221

    Should that be: 星期六八点会吃?


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

    is it right if i write "they are going to have"? i mean, will and going to are futuro so,,,


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

    Why can't i say 他们星期六八点会吃晚饭?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Marcio665288

    Why iy doesn't accept "eat" dinner here but it accepts for other meals and examples.

    Learn Chinese in just 5 minutes a day. For free.