Sentence 1: "On a rendez-vous demain à midi."
Sentence 2: "Il préfère travailler le soir."

Why not "le midi" and "à soir", both with "le", both with "à" or even maybe even with "au"?

"Fermé le dimanche."
"Fermé jeudi prochain."

Is there no "le" in the second sentence because the "prochain" modifying it? Would that be a general rule or just with dates?


  • 1
    It's constructed nearly as in english : We meet tomorow at noon, He'd rather work in the evening.
    – Julien
    Commented Nov 2, 2020 at 15:34
  • Maybe this is a belgicism, but "le midi" is also used to qualify "around/at lunch time". Example: "Le midi je mange à la cantine, mais le soir je mange à la maison".
    – Laurent S.
    Commented Nov 3, 2020 at 14:16

1 Answer 1


With expressions of clock time, use the preposition à to say (at) what time. You can leave out the "at" in English, but not the à in French. It answers the question « À quelle heure ... ? »

À quelle heure ? À midi.
Demain on a rendez-vous à 13h30.
On va dîner à 19h00.
Je me lève toujours à cinq heures.

For expressions of repeated days or times like le matin, le soir, or days of the week like le lundi, le mardi, le shows that it is a usual, repeated event.

Le matin je me lève tôt.
Le mercredi, on mange le déjeuner chez nous.
Je ne travaille pas le samedi. Le samedi, le magasin est fermé.

Every morning, on Wednesdays, on Saturdays in general. « Fermé le jeudi » follows this pattern.

To specify next Thursday, but not every Thursday, use « jeudi prochain. » It also means not this Thursday, but Thursday next. That works with names for days of the week (not necessarily dates).

On voulait partir en vacances samedi prochain.
Lundi prochain c'est un jour férié.


L'année prochaine on va voyager.
Qu'est-ce qu'on va faire la semaine prochaine ?

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