Google Translate is not able to translate the first three letters of the days of the week.

I expected "Son" to have the same translation as "Sonntag".

Is there any problem with the translation?

  • 3
    If something goes wrong under your assumption, why is the wrongness of your assumption last thing to consider?
    – c.p.
    Commented Jan 20, 2023 at 6:59
  • 1
    Another problem with Google Translate is, that it is not the best translator. There are other free machine translators, that do a much better job. Commented Jan 20, 2023 at 9:32

2 Answers 2


The abbreviations in German are: Mo, Di, Mi, Do, Fr, Sa, So. Always the first two letters.

  • 3
    Please do not give answers that contain phrases such as "I think", "I believe", "if I remember correctly " or similar. If you know for sure, please do not use such phrases. Just state the facts and ideally provide some background information. However, if you have doubts, make sure thoroughly before giving an answer, or don't give an answer at all. The Internet is already full of false assumptions that others believe to be true. Please do not add more assumptions, but facts. - Btw: Your answer is correct, but you should still not spread assumptions here, but facts. Commented Jan 20, 2023 at 9:40

The German abbreviations have only two letters, because we do not need more. Even two letters are unambiguous. The English names for the days of the week could also be abbreviated with only two letters, but in English it has become common to use three letters.

But many devices are produced for the international market, including digital watches that also display the date, including the day of the week. And some of these displays use a fixed, 3-letter wide display to show the day of the week. You can set these displays to many different languages, and if you change such displays to German, you will also see German 3-letter abbreviations for the day of the week. But whenever I see such 3-letter abbreviations, it seems like a mistake. They are non-standard abbreviations that German native speakers are not used to. It takes longer to recognize what these letters mean than if there were the standard abbreviations.

English German (standard, please use) Non-standard, please avoid
Mon Mo Mon
Tue Di Die
Wed Mi Mit
Thu Do Don
Fri Fr Fre
Sat Sa Sam
Sun So Son

Note, that in English you also have longer alternative abbreviations (Tue = Tues and Thu = Thur = Thurs), but in German only the two-letter abbreviations are in use.

  • 2
    For use in computer software, the Unicode consortium maintains a database with this sort of localisation information. The weekday abbreviations are in the cldr-dates-modern package. Choose the language (de, de-AT,...) and the file ca-generic. For example in JSON format, the file can be found at github.com/unicode-org/cldr-json/blob/main/cldr-json/….
    – ccprog
    Commented Jan 20, 2023 at 12:54

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.