Translation:They were smoking tobacco before the class.
Hmm... I didn’t interpret this literally. Instead, I mistranslated it as how I would be used to hearing it...that they were smoking tobacco before class, not in front of the class. That is, they were smoking tobacco before they went to class.
If they actually did that for real, they would have absolutely found themselves before the school principal.
Not in West Coast American English. I can’t speak for English in general, let alone the rest of the United States. “Before class” and “before the class” would be interpreted differently.
I guess I got the same issue with Ithim riomhe an gcailín. I couldn’t determine if it were “I eat before the girl gets to eat,” or “I eat while the girl sits in front of me watching me eat (probably mad that I got to eat and she didn’t.)”
‘Sorry for mangling Irish. My Irish sucks. facepalm!