"He has been free since yesterday."
Translation:Er hat seit gestern frei.
I don't fully grasp the translation in German. It feels there is a piece missing. I think it may be that "has been" is somehow present tense, hence only needing "hat" but my brain wants a "gewesen" at the end. Why is it not needed? I am hoping this is not just idiomatic but not sure.
Hi, native English speaker here. My interpretation of the English phrase to mean, released from some sort of imposed restriction, whether that be physical incarceration, or for example free to visit. Other than a sarcastic response to someone. It was also a catch phrase from a well known 1970s British Sitcom 'Are you being served'. I'm free, was a comment made by a salesman in the comedy act with obvious camp reference or perhaps the Rolling Stones or even The Who. A bit of trivia!
Frei haben is a verb meaning to be off, free (from work etc) and other things. It makes slightly more sense now :-) https://www.dict.cc/deutsch-englisch/frei+haben.html
Das ‘present perfect’ lässt sich in diesem Zusammenhang eher mit dem Präsens übersetzen, denn es bezieht sich auf eine Handlung, die noch im Gegenwart stattfindet, demnach wäre die richtige Formulierung ‘er ist seit gestern frei’. Wenn er stattdessen seit gestern frei war, versteht man, dass er jetzt nicht mehr frei ist.
Ich weiß jedoch nicht, ob diese Übersetzung überhaupt akzeptiert wird; wenn nicht, melden Sie das.
If he is still free up to the present, then you use the present tense. Even though we say "has been" in English (using the present perfect tense) a lot of other languages use the present tense in such cases, (like the French use of depuis).
In this case it is also idiomatic (according to TheM11Mum's post above and Cam209994 below) that in German you say hat frei rather than ist frei if referring to his having time off rather than his liberty. If referring to the fact that he had got out of jail then you would use ist frei so I suppose that would be correct if this sentence was referring to him having got out of jail yesterday rather than him having a day off.
I was confused until someone pointed out that "freihaben" is a verb with a separable prefix. Thus, when conjugated, "haben" is conjugated as normal, and "frei" goes to the end of the clause. According to the following reference, it means to be free in a sense of going on holiday from work, so if someone fluent can confirm, perhaps this can also be translated "He has been on holiday since yesterday"?
As a side question, does anyone know if there are differences of implications in referring to time off work using "der Urlaub" vs. "freihaben"?
You, Tommylockwood, are right. Er hat seit gestern frei. The sentence is correct German and often used. It means he has some days off or vacation / holidays in work / school / university context.
So your holiday sentence would be a perfect translation.
I guess, Nicole 9333731 does not refer to the German translation, when she says that the sentence would be uncommon. And no, it is no dialect Problem, it´s correct HighGerman and would be used and understood all over Germany.
If he would have been released from jail, you would say: Er ist seit gestern frei.
So to your sidequenstion: Urlaub means a special way of Freihaben. As an employee in Germany (like in every EU Member Contry) you have by law at least 4 weeks Urlaub per year. So it could be, that you are on vacation if they say " er hat frei" , but mostley they would use it, if you have one / some days off because of overhours ore something like that.
I hope, that helps.
As a native speaker, do you agree that "Er ist seit gestern frei" would be correct if he had got out of prison yesterday, but if he has taken some time off work since yesterday then it would be "er hat seit gestern frei"? or are you saying the "ist..... frei" would work for both?