1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Spanish
  4. >
  5. "Ellos vuelven a casa tarde."

"Ellos vuelven a casa tarde."

Translation:They go back home late.

June 5, 2018



to go back home = to return home in English.

It is the English in question here. Physically, this means returning to a place where a person was previously. "I am going home" (Voy a casa) doesn't give the sense of a round trip that "go back home" and "return home" (vuelven a casa) both relay.


If volver means to return then why did they "go back" instead or "return to"


Those two expressions carry the same meaning.


"get back" should be accepted, as well. In English, it means the same thing.


Why wouldn't "They are coming home late" be acceptable? "Inquiring minds want to know."


I have the same question.

What I'm wondering is this: Since "They are coming home late" didn't work, but "They are going home late" did, that suggests to me that it's a matter of the speaker's perspective. In my experience, an English speaker who says "They are coming home late" is at or near the home, whereas one who says "They are going home late" is at or near the place "they" are leaving. But would this also be true of Spanish? That is, who would say "Ellos vuelven a casa tarde": a neighbor woken by a drunk couple returning at 4am, or the host of a party who was hoping her guests would be gone earlier?


Volver is defined as "to go to the place you departed from" (def. 20). It doesn't require any certain perspective. If you want to go for a certain perspective, you can use more directive verbs: partir, salir, ir for the party host; venir, llegar for the disgruntled neighbour.

Accepting "They are going home late" but not "They are coming home late" is a little inconsistent. But I'd say that "going home" gives the feeling of "returning home" somewhat better that "coming home".


I really like your humour. One lingot for you Ma'am.


Yeah, i had the same feeling about this.(emmalinew)


Volver has the meaning of "to return". So "coming back home" would express this more clearly.


I've been noticing that we don't use "la" before "casa" in some other sentences too. From my understanding, if the object is specific, then we need to use a definite article. Can someone please throw some light?


Anoop, the phrases "a casa", "en casa" and "de casa" refer to someone's "home", their living place, which might not be a house. If you use the article and say "la casa", it translates as "the house", referring to a specific building.


Does anyone know why "they return home in the afternoon" is not accepted by Duolingo?


"La tarde" is "the afternoon" when it's used as a noun with an article or a determiner. Tarde on its own is an adverb and means "late".


Many thanks. I did not know that.


How do we say: "they are returning late to the house" in Spanish? It was rejected here...


It said type in Spanish what they say!! After I typed it in Spanish as instructed and they spoke it in Spanish, it says type it in English!! Whats the deal????


Would ..return home late ...be acceptable?


Yes, that would be good. :)


It was marked wrong for me, but I think "They get back home late" should definitely be accepted. Volver means to return, so if you are going home, a return is implied. This is common English usage. (reported)


Shouldn't be: Ellos no vuelven a (la) casa tarde!


The child's voice is annoying and not understandable. I may need to find another app besides duolingo.


Return and go back is the same thing.


"They went home late." Not accepted


They are going back home later. It seems equivalent to they go back home late. Difference?

  • tarde - late - in the evening (approximately)
  • más tarde - later - at a point in time after what was expected


"they go back to house late." Why is this wrong?


Ouz, you cannot say "to house" in English. The term "house" refers to a specific building, so you'll mostly use an article or something similar with it: "the house", "my house", "a house", and so on.

The phrase "a casa" refers to a movement with your home as the goal, referring to wherever you live, which is not necessarily a house.


why not return at house


A casa and en casa are usually translated "home".
Vuelven a casa. They return home,
Voy a casa. I'm going (I go) home.
Estoy en casa. I'm home. I'm at home.
Ven a casa. Come home.
Quédate en casa. Stay home.


HI Marcy, great explanation thanks, just to add I also have noticed that when in Spanish it says "a la casa" that would be 'to the house' and when it says 'a casa' it means home. I think that is how it sticks with me anyhoo :-)


"A casa" is rather a movement to your home. "En casa" would be "at home".


Why not use "return" for volver?


That should work as well. Did you try?


They return to the house late.....should be accepted


"To the house" would be "a la casa", which not necessarily refers to your living quarters. "A casa", without the article, means "(to) home".


It also specifies a house, and some people live in another type of dwelling, like an apartment, an RV, or a boat. None would be considered a house, but all would be considered home.


Why is "They returned home late" wrong? Doesn't "returned" have the same meaning as "go back"?


"Returned" is past tense and implies that they are home now. "Go back" is present tense and means that they're currently on their way.


So how would you translate "they returned home late"? If it's incorrect here.


"They returned" would either be volvieron in preterite tense, or volvían in the imperfect.


It seems to me that adding the word "will" would make this a better English sentence.


Either that, or you can keep it in the simple present to make it a habitual action, implying that they come home late regularly.


"Later" should be used for "late," as well.


I would think that would be "mas tarde", or something to that extent.


"They come back home late". Was excepted

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