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confused with el

Ok, i am kinda confused with the word el

for intance el is the el is on when we write for example el partido es el lundes the game is on monday and not the game is the monday is their any special way to use it

June 19, 2018



el partido es el lunes. isnt the translation for this more "the party is monday"

but in english we say "the party is on monday". so el still means the. and "el lunes" is just "monday", not "the monday"

Thats my understanding


It means "party" only in the sense of political party, while "game" or "match" is correct. http://www.spanishdict.com/translate/partido

And yes, this is simply a matter of the two languages phrasing this differently. Instead of thinking of each word mapping to another, think of the entire phrase as having a certain meaning. So el never means on, but the phrase el lunes can mean "on Monday."


it's not really that "el lunes" means "on monday"

el partido es el lunes just means "the match is monday" ("on" is not necessary in English, and in both languages "is" implies "will be")

Generally speaking, Spanish makes more liberal use of the definite article than English does. e.g., what we just call "love" in spanish would be "el amor"; what we call "peace" would be "la paz" in Spanish. They also use them for languages. "el frances" instead of just "french". e.g., el japonés es una lengua dificil. The also say "en la television" instead of just "on television."

So "the match is monday" is "el partido es el lunes"

(On the other hand, we have "the" in places where they don't. We say Charles the Fifth. In spanish, you just say "Carlos quinto" so watch out for that.)


it's not really that "el lunes" means "on monday"

Yes it is.

el in front of days of the week generally translates to 'on'.


Notice: When used with the days of the week, the definite article has the special meaning “on.”


So says spanish study, so says Google Translate, and, apparently, so say you. You could probably drag out a bunch of other sources that will say so as well.

We must respectfully disagree. (I am not necessarily disagreeing with your statement that "el in front of days of the week generally translates to on", which I had assumed would be clear from my previous post. I am disagreeing with your statement "Yes it is", which is unnecessarily argumentative and, frankly, incorrect.)

While I will not argue against the translation given in duolingo, I will reiterate that the spanish definite article el--which is correctly used here--simply does not, and can not, translate in any sense as the English preposition "on" and to propagate such an exact value to the translation is not only incorrect, but it will also confuse students (as should be obvious given the original poster's creation of this thread in the first place.) The English sentence reads well enough with or without including the word "on", and therefore you can reasonably translate "el partido es el lunes" as "the match is on Monday" if you want, but that does not mean that "el lunes" really means "on Monday."

To assume such an equivalency would be the morally akin to a Spanish instructor arguing that "have" and "am" mean the same thing. One could say that in Spanish (and in many languages) "I have 15 years" means the same thing that an Englishman means when he says "I am 15 years old." That is certainly true. However, it does not syllogistically follow from this observation that "am" and "have" mean the same thing. They are etymologically, logically, and syntactically different, and happen to converge here in one specific sense. I.e., they are incidentally analogous, but are not homologous, and it I have observed that such presentations confuse students. The same can be said of trying to convince students that the definite article el has some sort of "special meaning" in the days of the week. It does not.


The same can be said of trying to convince students that the definite article el has some sort of "special meaning" in the days of the week. It does not.

Yes it does.

It means 'on'. El does not mean on in other situations, only in front of days of the week.

I'm not sure why you're arguing this?

You've seen three sources that confirm that el when used in front of spanish days of the week means 'on' yet you're still arguing against it?

Did you ever consider you might be wrong?


This article (pun intended) on the definite articles in Spanish may help. It includes discussion of el with the days of the week:


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