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  5. "You read at night."

"You read at night."

Translation:Vous lisez la nuit.

April 5, 2013

6 Comments


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

Would you ever say something containing the phrase "à la nuit"? Or does that not make sense?


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

Well the sentence is not well translated in my opinion.

"Vous lisez dans la nuit" = "You read in the night"

"Vous lisez la nuit" = "You read at night"

As for your questions @danapplegate, I suppose you're asking if there is a possibility to translate "at night" with "à la nuit" to which the answer is no.

Maybe there are sentences using "à la nuit" but I can't think about any right now, and they would likely have no link with this exercise.


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

So "the night" and "at night" are both la nuit?


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

They're both translated with "la nuit", they don't mean the same thing. In French, context is needed to tell them apart.


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

I still don't understand WHY we're to use la instead of à la. Seems to go against the logic of this exercise.


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

Searching for logical explanations is not always a good way to learn a new language, because all languages have different logic patterns, and most of them have exceptions. As a matter of fact, French has a tremendous amount of exceptions (which is part of the reason many people find it difficult to learn).

We usually don't use "à" when we talk about a whole portion of time (unless we use an expression that requires to use "à", for example "par rapport à").

"Le hibou dort le jour et chasse la nuit." = "The owl sleeps during the day and hunts at night."

However we use it for exact moments in time, for example:

"Il est arrivé à 15:00." = "He arrived at 3 o'clock."

You can learn more about "à" here:

http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/preposition_a.htm

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