"现在差一刻五点。"

Translation:It's a quarter to five now.

December 15, 2017

47 Comments
This discussion is locked.


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

It's quarter to five. Now is implied and 'a' isn't necessary


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eoin790683

Yes. It's so annoying that they still haven't fixed the totally reduntant "now" in these sentences.


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

If you are watching the clock and repeatedly checking the time until something happens then you can use the "now" to emphasise the progression of time. If you are just telling someone the time once then you don't need it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ant.H

The "a" is definitely not required (native English speaker from England).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cs1987

According to Google Ngram Viewer, "It's quarter past" has overtaken "It's a quarter past" in frequency of usage in British English in the last 15 years or so, and is also becoming more common in American English. "It's quarter to" still trails "It's a quarter to" in usage frequency, but not by a very wide margin. So "It's quarter to five now" definitely should be accepted.

https://bit.ly/2FbApB8 (click on "Search lots of books" to generate the graph)

My knowledge of the Chinese language isn't good enough to comment on whether or not the "now" is necessary in this sentence.


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

"A" is required here; "[It is] quarter to five." is bad English.

The sentence is certainly more natural without "now" though.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/em7ec

Yeah, I would never say it without the "a." American here.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brian894876

"It's quarter to five now" is accepted. I would never say it with the "a". Canadian here.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NNN5555

I'm American, mid west. I hear the "a" about half the time. In fact, I think "Quarter to five" without anything else, is the most common response to a request for time.


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

Interesting I never thought about that, english is my second language. I always say it without the "a"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/_clay53

English is my native language and I just say the time.


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

In England, 'a' is not required - furthermore you're not learning English, you're learning Chinese so it should not matter.


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

Though i agree with now. A is still said in english even if its blurred with its more like itsa quarter past 5


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

Duolingo Lacks flexibility! Just realized that and don't quibble. They take away your hearts and you need Hearts to play... So use the practice modes on one's you finished and they will reward you with hearts and with experience points. And it's free and it's really awfully good. It's a computer program. You can learn fundamentals and you can learn characters in grammatical utterances. Wow!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/t0mmylasagna

In college, I was taught that this sentence should be structured "现在五点差一刻“ This is also the structure that the Pimsleur audio courses use. Does anyone know if it matters if"差一刻” comes before or after the “五点”? To me, the given sentence seems grammatically incorrect, but I'm not a native speaker.


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

My Chinese wife said that if before, the sentence must have 到 before the hour!


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

Why is 差 translated as "worse", and how does it fit into this sentence? This is very confusing.


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

The radical meaning of 差 is "difference". When something is "bad", its difference from the standard is being noticed, and thus 差 is extended to "bad". It would need some comparative words to mean "worse".
我今年成绩很差/My results are bad this year.
拿个B 也没差/There's no difference getting a B.
我一直拿A 的!差很多了!/I used to get A! It's much worse now!


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

If you know any Spanish, it might help to relate it to the Spanish way of telling time... rather than saying "quarter to five", you'd say "five less a quarter" (las cinco menos cuarto).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ClaudioTur13

In Italian too..but we also use the other construction.. Le cinque meno un quarto/un quarto alle cinque


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Slade366

I for one think the now is absolutely necessary (现在). You don't want to just translate every sentence into "perfect" English because then you will just be relying on rote memory rather than actually understanding the characters and the Chinese sentence structure. I actually wished duolingo allowed more "dirty" English rather than sometimes requiring one commonplace Chinese phrase to be translated into the similar commonplane English phrase. Just because they're often said in the same context in each culture doesn't mean they hold the same meaning!


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

This is very sensible and inspiring for language learning, and deserves a lingot. In English we use the impersonal It to tell the time but such structure is much less used in Chinese. If someone says this without "now", it would become a bit difficult to tell what he's talking about, unless we already knew Time is the topic.


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

"It's 4:45" not accepted.


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

Duo is confusing here with the sentence structure. It isn't made clear whether 差一刻 should follow 五点 or come before it. Apparently, it's interchangeable, given that they accept both answers. It should be specified which is more often used, though.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hei1long2

"Now it's a quarter to five" (Wrong) "It's a quarter to five" (wrong) "It's a quarter to five now" (correct)

So besides having to study Mandarin, I also need to learn psychic abilities to gess up the "correct" answer


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michelle720666

“It is quarter to five" wrong correct answer is "NOW it is quarter to five" Really?????


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

"Its now a quarter to five " is often used in english


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ant.H

Why on earth isn't "It's now quarter to five" accepted, but "It's quarter to five now" is??


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ant.H

"It's now quarter to five" still not accepted...


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

Im English and id never say 'its a quarter to 5 now' but i have heard it used. I think both should be accepted.


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

It should accept both answers with and without the 'a' since there are no changes to the meaning and it has no impact on how much Chinese you understand.


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

In all my life, I've never actually heard anyone talk like this...


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

"Its now a quarter to five" is somehow wrong


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

Yes, you left out the apostrophe from "It's". Apart from that it is perfectly good English. It would be most appropriate if you had been watching the clock for a while and wanted to emphasis what the time had progressed to since the last time you mentioned it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Narayana539303

Why do they need me to add "now" at the end? I'm sick of getting things wrong because Duolingo doesn't understand how people speak in regular conversation.


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

You need to say "now" in this instance because then you can prove you understood the Chinese sentence. Otherwise you are just demonstrating that you speak perfect English. Not much to do with a Chinese course!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Photios-NYC

I don't know where to put this comment. So here goes: in the hints for "Time 3," 九点三刻 is incorrectly rendered as 5:45.


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

Now, is not required,it is understood.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/StephenJoh218823

How is "it's a quarter to 5:00 now" incorrect???????


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PhamDang4

in a right former test "Now" is omitted. Mind it!


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

"Right now it's a quarter to five" should be accepted


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jed916492

What's wrong with it's now a quarter to five?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CarlosFred743192

is 差一刻五点 the same as 五点差一刻?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John638603

yes, if you're on the desktop version and look at the "tips" it shows both examples being used.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tim148945

In Oral Chinese is usually said "现在五点差一刻”.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nar781477

Is it supposed to be chà or chā for 差 in this context? Because there seems to be a subtle difference in the meanings and I tought chà was more accurate. Duo isn't always correct with their tones.

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