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    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • German
      • Home Country:
      • Germany
      • Current Location:
      • Germany

    • Join Date: Jul 2014
    • Posts: 50
    #1

    Can I spend time IN THE NATURE?

    Dear teachers,

    I've just read a blog entry about the Germans' hobby of "spending time in the nature". The blog was written by an Australian woman who is currently spending her time in Germany.

    As far as I know, the noun "Nature" (referring to the natural world around us) is usually used without an article.

    In German, however, we use it with an article, thus making it a kind of "room" you can go into, like "I enjoy being in the nature".

    Is that possible in English, too? Or is this woman's language influenced by her German surroundings?

    Who can help?

  1. bhaisahab's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • Ireland

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 25,605
    #2

    Re: Can I spend time IN THE NATURE?

    It's not correct in English.
    “Every miserable fool who has nothing at all of which he can be proud, adopts as a last resource pride in the nation to which he belongs; he is ready and happy to defend all its faults and follies tooth and nail, thus reimbursing himself for his own inferiority.”

    — Arthur Schopenhauer

  2. Piscean's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Czech Republic
      • Current Location:
      • Czech Republic

    • Join Date: Jul 2015
    • Posts: 9,939
    #3

    Re: Can I spend time IN THE NATURE?

    I have lost count of the number of times I have corrected my Czech students when they tell me of their weekends 'on the cottage in the nature' (it brings to mind a picture of rooftop nudism). 'In the nature' is a literal translation of a phrase that exists in many European languages, but not in English. Depending on context, native speakers of English use outdoors, outside, in the fresh air, in the open, or, more specifically, in the country/mountains/hills/etc.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • German
      • Home Country:
      • Germany
      • Current Location:
      • Germany

    • Join Date: Jul 2014
    • Posts: 50
    #4

    Re: Can I spend time IN THE NATURE?

    Thank you very much for your answers, both of you.

    Particular thanks goes to Piscean for giving me all those valuable alternatives!

  3. Tarheel's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Jun 2014
    • Posts: 10,994
    #5

    Re: Can I spend time IN THE NATURE?

    Say:

    The blog was written by an Australian woman who is currently living in Germany.

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