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Would

It is night.

be

C'est nuit.

or

Il est nuit.

or

Il fait nuit.

or something else?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 6 down vote accepted

You can say :

  • Il fait nuit.
  • C'est la nuit.

The other two aren't correct.

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Why not just "C'est nuit"? Wouldn't the "la" make it "It is the night"? –  muntoo Nov 20 '11 at 7:34
3  
Cases where French does not use the definite article (−> le, la, les ) are rare. A lot rarer then in English. In it's night you don't use the definite article in English because here night is an abstract noun. In French you have to use the definite article in front of night in that case. We might find a noun without an article in ready made phrases (jour et nuit par exemple) or to convey a special effect. In general don't translate literally from one language to another, it rarely works ! –  Laure Nov 20 '11 at 8:53

The correct translation of "It's night." is "Il fait nuit." When you speak about the weather or the sky, you always say "Il fait".

Il fait nuit. (It's night.)

Il fait jour. (It's day.)

Il fait beau. (The weather is good.)

Il fait moche. (The weather is bad.)

Il fait froid. (It's cold.)

Il fait chaud. (It's hot.)

Il fait sombre (The weather is dark. )

Il fait clair. (The weather is bright. )

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