"De muis loopt over de tafel."
Translation:The mouse is walking over the table.
It feels like, "On the table" would be more natural in English. Unless in dutch, it's implied that mouse is on something (or floating over) the table.
"over" implies climbing up one side, across the top, and down the other side.
I thought "up one side, across the top, and down the other" would be "... over de tafel heen," and that "over" would just be across the top of the table, maybe completely but not necessarily.
As for the English confusion with the possibility of floating over the table, I think that would be better expressed as "above." And then, I think, the Dutch preposition would be "boven."
Personally, I have no problem with "over" in English to mean a mouse walking along the upper surface of the table.
Multitaal provides a bit more on this in the discussion for the same exercise in the other direction (link). He/she translates "overheen lopen" as "to walk across to the other side (or on top of something)" and you seem to agree on "over lopen," which would appear to leave open the question of how one would parsimoniously express "up one side, across the top, and down the other side" (which, upon thinking in mouse terms, certainly seems reasonable enough for English "over" in this sentence).
Searching Google Books for "walk over," some relevant references are:
- Walk over the crest and down, then swing to the left
- walk over and take the ball back
- I would walk over to greet the Pakistani ambassador
- He was about to walk over and introduce himself
- Walk over the field here parallel with the leylandii hedge
- we walk over to the post office to pick up a food box
In short, it seems to correspond to walking across a defined course or distance from one location to another.
Personally, I wouldn't understand what it meant to "walk along" a two-dimensional surface. To me, that phrasal verb is only natural for things that are (roughly) linear / one-dimensional: a road, a sidewalk, a beach.
I probably wouldn't use "along" normally. I was just trying to use something other than the prepositions already being discussed to avoid circular definitions.
Four of the examples you cited from your Google Books search have the specific meaning of walking to a specific place (to where the ball is; to where I could greet the ambassador; to he or she to whom he is going to introduce himself; to the post office.) That's a common usage for over (also for any travel verb: run, drive, fly, come, go). In those cases, "over" is really behaving more like an adverb than a preposition. It's different from the other examples, which express a relationship between the traveller and whatever lies across the distance he or she is travelling (the crest, the field), and behaves more clearly like a preposition.
Oh, I think it's a preposition in the Dutch exercise, both in Dutch and in English. And table (tafel) is the object of the preposition in each case. And "field" and "crest" are the objects of the preposition "over" in those examples. Mostly, whether we use over, across, above, or something else is a matter of habit. I'd probably say that I hiked across the field but hiked over the hill. And I flew over both on my way from one place to another, but flew above them if I weren't really going anywhere but was just hanging out in the air.
No matter. For me, I doubt I'll get a solid grasp on the Dutch word choices unless and until I've spent more time with the language to get a feel for how the words are used.
Hmm, I think it's an adverb in all cases (although I agree there's a difference in the precise meaning). "over the field" or "over the crest" with "over" as a preposition would mean "above the field" or "above the crest".
I think Dutch "over" is an adverb, here, too, (I've been presuming part of a phrasal verb, so, the same as English, I think, in terms of the grammar). Although, like in English, it can be either an adverb or an adjective (Wiktionary).
In English or Dutch? In English it sounds to me more like the mouse has really long legs or it's a really small table (/ floating, as mentioned).
"across" is accepted; that makes more sense to me.
My belgian boyfriend insists "loopt" actually means "runs" and that belgians will refer to running 90% of the time it's used, and that my answer that is marked wrong should be accepted. "The mouse runs over the table" anyone else can confirm?
Apparently the thinking is, "This is a course in Dutch Dutch."
I think you are absolutely right. Did you ever see a mouse "walk"?? The poor animal is always "running"! And "lopen" can also have the meaning of a quick movement. So, "run" is correct!
I feel like 'runs' should be valid translation, since 'walk' is not really used for animals in English
I would definitely disagree. "Walk" is definitely used for animals in English, to me the same distinction is made between walking and running for animals as it is for humans - fast = running, slower = walking. I wouldn't see any issue with "the dog is walking on the grass" or "the lion walks through the jungle", let alone the sentence given here. Secondly, "run" is usually translated as "rennen" or "hardlopen" in Dutch, whereas "lopen" is generally understood as "walk".