As we had said in the previous post, we are going to keep adding minutes to the clock; now, from 30 minutes onwards. It is a very special and Spanish way of telling time from 30’ onwards. Is actually very easy in idea but annoying because it is something that is not really normal in an English sense.
Basically, when we add minutes to the clock and it goes further than 30, the next hour is said first, and then, we just count and take the minutes that we have left to reach the next hour. -adding minus in front of these minutes-. Let’s see it better in examples:
2:40 → SON LAS TRES MENOS VEINTE
ARE THE THREE MINUS TWENTY
→ (IT’S TWENTY MINUTES TO THREE )
◊ As we have explained, the next hour is said first, and then, we just count and take the minutes that we have left to reach the next hour. –adding minus in front of these minutes-.
5:40 → SON LAS SEIS MENOS VEINTE
ARE THE SIX MINUS TWENTY
→ (IT’S TWENTY MINUTES TO SIX)
If we keep adding minutes to the clock and we reach :45, as in English, we do have a name to express that. In English you name it –QUARTER– and in Spanish it is named –CUARTO-, which actually is completely the same concept, but, we just build it in the sentence in a different order. 1/4 is a -QUARTER- of the total:
2:45 → SON LAS TRES MENOS CUARTO
ARE THE THREE MINUS QUARTER
→ (IT’S A QUARTER TO THREE)
Let’s keep adding minutes to the clock and taking minutes to the next hour:
1:55 → SON LAS DOS MENOS CINCO
ARE THE TWO MINUS FIVE
→ (IT’S FIVE TO TWO)
◊ A common mistake that people make is whenever they use this form of taking minutes to the next hour also when it is :30 of a specific hour. No! We will just take minutes to the next hour, when the clock goes :30 onwards, not :30 sharp. When is this time, just remember that we tell the time as we have learned in the previous post; remember, only :30, onwards:
6:30 → SON LAS SEIS Y MEDIA
ARE THE SIX AND HALF
→ (IT’S HALF, PAST SIX)
- MEDIA is grammatically an adjective that gives information about the noun feminine/singular HORA; MEDIA HORA → HALF HOUR. We do not tell the noun HORA because it is already clearly known that it refers to it, so, we just keep the article adjective MEDIA (feminine/singular) it is needed to specify the time.