I've noticed a few times that when there is an extra little verb (wil, in "wat je wil"), that the word order changes, and the stuff I would normally expect to be in the middle goes to the end. Can someone explain why this is? If I wanted to avoid confusion, could I still say "Je mag wat je wil zeggen"?
In je mag zeggen wat je wil
mag= modal verb - finite (conjugated) (must remain with the subject)
zeggen= main verb
wat je wil= Direct Object of the verb zeggen, what you may say. At the same time, this is a dependent/subordinate clause, and in such clauses, verbs are placed at the end.
I'm not an expert, but I think that in this case zeggen is placed after mag (instead of at the end of the sentence) because the Direct Object is a clause and it could create confusion regarding to which modal verb zeggen is related (mag or wil).
For example, if you were to say:
Je mag dat wel zeggen
then zeggen is indeed placed at the end.
Hope this helps.
Thanks, this seems correct! Although I would be reassured by a mod/native speaker confirming this :P
Je mag zeggen wat je wil, Gaffer, maar Balingshoek is een vreemd oord en de mensen erin zijn vreemder!
That is also accepted. "Je wil" and "je wilt" are both correct. The latter is a bit more formal.