【老師救救我】until 用法大集合

想必大家都看過 until「直到」這個字,但是常常會卡在中文邏輯裡轉不過來,因而誤用,像這位學生造的句子:

請問老師,我想造這樣的句子:我有五天不會在這裡,但直到禮拜六我就回來了。請問我可以這樣說嗎:
I will not be here for five days, but I will be back until Saturday.

大家有發現錯誤嗎?你知道要怎麼改才正確嗎?

until 用法

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認識基礎用法

Until 的意思是「直到…時,到…為止」,不過要注意 until 是用在表示「一直做某件事直到某個時間」。
例如:I lived in Taitung until I was twelve years old.
這句就是說「我一直住、一直住,直到我十二歲為止」,那也就是「我在台東住到我十二歲為止。」

或是:This ticket is valid until December.
字面上意思為「這張票一直有效、一直有效,直到十二月」,那其實就是「這張票直到十二月都有效。」

 

回到最上面的句子:I will not be here for five days, but I will be back until Saturday.
這句之所以是錯誤的,是因為中文雖然是說「我直到禮拜六才回來」,但是英文直接說:I will be back until Saturday. 就會變成「我一直回來、一直回來,直到禮拜六」,語意完完全全相反啦!

那訂正這個句子的方式很簡單,只要加上一個 not 就好了:I will not be back until Saturday. 字面上的意思表示「我一直不回來、一直不回來,直到禮拜六」,那其實也就是說「我直到禮拜六才會回來」。

 

認識進階用法

強調句 It is / was not until…that…

英文中強調句的結構為「It is / was…that」可以將想強調的人事物放到中間,例如以下這句:

Barbara met her husband at a party in 1998.(Barbara 在1998 年的一場派對上認識了她的丈夫。)

如果要強調「時間」的話,就說:It was in 1998 that Barbara met her husband at a party.
如果想強調「地點」的話,就是:It was at a party that Barbara met her husband in 1998.

我們可以將 not…until 的句子結合這種強調句用法,像是以下句子:I didn’t go to school until 10 o’clock.(我直到 10 點鐘才去學校。

變成強調句之後就會是:It was not until 10 o’clock that I went to school.

注意到了嗎?強調句裡面不需要原本的助動詞 did,拿掉助動詞之後動詞 go 就要變化一下,變成過去式的 went。

 

再舉個例子:
I didn’t go home until 8 o’clock.(直到 8 點我才回家。)
→ It was not until 8 o’clock that I went home.

如果原本的句子中沒有助動詞 do / does / did 的話,就直接放到強調句的 that 後面就好囉:
I was not home until 8 o’clock.(直到八點我才在家。)
→ It was not until 8 o’clock that I was home.

 

倒裝句 Not until…

Not until 放句首的時候,後面的句子要倒裝,也就是說如果原先的句子有一般動詞,則要在主詞前面加上助動詞 do / does / did;那如果句子含有 be 動詞的話,則將 be 動詞與主詞位置對調。

舉幾個例子:
The boy didn’t tell the truth until his sister was scolded.(直到他姐姐被責罵了,那男孩才說出實話。)
→ Not until the boy’s sister was scolded did the boy tell the truth.

She was not happy until her boyfriend apologized to her.(直到她男友向她道歉,她才開心了一點。)
→ Not until her boyfriend apologized to her was she happy.

 

換你試試看

1. We _____ dinner until Dad came back.(我們直到爸爸回來才吃晚餐。)
(A) had   (B) didn’t have

2. It was not until midnight that I _____ asleep.(我直到午夜才睡著。)
(A) fell   (B) didn’t fall

3. Not until I grew up _____ how much my parents loved me.(直到我長大了,我才明白我的父母有多愛我。)
(A) I understood   (B) did I understand

 

 

Ans: 1. (B) 2. (A) 3. (B)

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