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  5. "Het hert spreekt geen Engels…

"Het hert spreekt geen Engels."

Translation:The deer does not speak English.

July 17, 2014


Sorted by top post


He should try using Duolingo.

July 18, 2014


It worked for de uil ;)

July 26, 2014


He should, except we don't have a deer -> English course! :O

August 22, 2014


If Klingon can get in, I think anything can.

April 28, 2015


That, my friend, deserves a lingot!

September 3, 2014


Thanks! :)

September 3, 2014


Yes he actually should XD

July 20, 2014


this made me laugh more than it should've hahah

February 18, 2017



May 14, 2018


I'm really enjoying the joke sentences thrown here and there. Spices up the course.

July 17, 2014


I really hope it's like this for the entire course. I think I learn better with jokes.

July 25, 2014


they should do this with all the other languages, makes life so much better

August 20, 2014


Is this a joke sentence? I have yet to meet a deer who speaks English... :p

March 8, 2015


Het hert spreekt Nederlands!

July 17, 2014


Of Cherokee

October 31, 2014


This deer will get nowhere in life.

August 4, 2014


What about bambi?? My whole life is a lie!

September 23, 2014


Oh deer...!!!

September 23, 2014


Bambi is een hert. Bambi spreekt Engels.

January 2, 2015


As an expert in the subject, I can assure that this statement is correct.

July 21, 2014


Does "hert" only mean a male deer like "Hirsch" in German or is it used for both - male and female?

July 23, 2014


Officially "hert" is a male deer, and "hinde" is a female deer. Although generally speaking, Dutch people don't differ between those two.

August 14, 2014


...that explains why 'hart' is an old-fashioned term for a buck, and 'hind' for a doe!

September 23, 2014


Okay. Sort of like how English speakers usually just say "Look, a deer!" rather than "Look, a buck!" or "Look, a doe!"

March 22, 2018


how do you know if it's deer singular or deer plural?

December 27, 2016


I found that an image search can be a good start for questions like that. Granted, there are words that can have other meanings or just don't give usable results but with animals or everyday things, this can work really well. https://www.google.de/search?q=hert

September 8, 2014


That's because the deer speaks Irish. In the Irish course, it has a sentence, "The deer speaks Irish. Labhraionn an fia Gaeilge. "

February 20, 2015



July 22, 2018


What?!?! But Bambi did!!!! :O

October 15, 2014


The deer could always learn Dutch. With Duolingo and the lols it brings along, anything is possible! c:

September 13, 2014


It's okay. At least we're not eating the deer like we ate the whale in the french course.

November 19, 2015


The h in hert sounds a little more like Dutch g. More glottal that's what confused me.

July 20, 2014


It might just be the close proximity with the R that you're hearing. That's what got me.

H, G, and R—now this is where Dutch gets really interesting :)

July 28, 2014


@spearer: I understand your confusion, but the R is not supposed to be part of your mixup. It's just that the Dutch female voice in the course has a potato up her throat, so 'hert' sounds like 'hegt'. In reality, it does not. The rest of her pronunciation is excellent, but this is her weakness.

August 19, 2014


Same here!

June 2, 2015


There are some deer in my area who speak some broken English.

November 10, 2014


The animals need more languages. :-p

November 4, 2014


So owls speak no dutch, and deer speak no english. Interesting.

April 20, 2015


'Hart' is an old English word for a male deer, which makes this easier to remember

April 26, 2015


And "deer" was an Old English word for an animal. But I suspect most people's language skills do not go back a 1000 years.

May 21, 2019


Nee, het hert spreekt Nederlands. En ik ben een appel!

April 27, 2015


really??? :D hahaha

September 16, 2014


Can we have more E in this sentence? Feels like there's some missing...

November 22, 2016


I listened to this many times and it sounds like there is an f between 'het' and 'hert' - can you explain?

May 14, 2018


He speaks Dutch...sorry

August 20, 2018


Maybe he speaks Dutch

October 5, 2018


Is "geen" the equivalent of the German "kein"??

July 28, 2015


Maybe speaks Spanish or Portuguese :)

December 24, 2015

  • 1217

It is difficult to differentiate between "het" and "hert".

June 11, 2017


So het hert speekt geen English but it.can speak Dutch just fine?!?

October 31, 2017


Why dont we use niet instead of "geen Engels" here?

January 29, 2018


Because geen qualifies nouns, rather than meaning "I do not speak..." (niet), it means that "I speak, but none of it is English" (geen).

January 29, 2018


You'll find a detailed explanation here: http://www.dutchgrammar.com/en/?n=WordOrder.47

July 22, 2018


Not quite - surely 'het here' is a specific direct object (rather than non-specific)?

July 23, 2018


Hi Gilly81848,

het hert is the Subject of this sentence, the Direct Object being Engels.

You'll argue that Engels is a specific DO, I can see it coming.... but no, sorry, it is not. You see, it is non-specific because you cannot place a definite article before it (think of it in English for a second: you can't say 'the English').

As there's no definite article preceding the noun, it's a non-specific DO.

Non-specific DOs are those that fulfil one of these conditions:

  • They are preceded by an indefinite article: een.

  • There's no definite article preceding the noun/noun phrase.

  • They are preceded by a cardinal number (twee, drie, etc.)

    • They are preceded by an indefinite pronoun (geen, enige, enkele, wat, veel).

Hope this helps :)

December 11, 2018


This may vary from region to region.

April 12, 2019


Is this the natural way to say this in Dutch? Isn't the literal translation that "the deer speaks no English", which is fine in English but a bit unusual. Going to Dutch I would have made the verb negative with "niet".

May 21, 2019


Yes, this is natural in Dutch. "Geen" is used to negate nouns (specifically, nouns that are the objects of active verbs or subject complements of "to be", "seem" or "become"), similarly to "kein/keine" in German.

Some simple examples:

Ik drink geen thee (I do not/am not drinking tea). Here "thee" is the direct object of "drink", so you use "geen" to negate it.

Ik drink niet (I do not drink) - in this case, there is no object or subject complement. The verb is being negated, so you use "niet" in this case.

Ik ben geen meisje (I am not a girl). Here "meisje" is the subject complement of "ben" (first person singular verb form), so you need to use "geen" to negate it.

De appel is niet geel (The apple is not yellow). In this case, you have a predicate ADJECTIVE rather than a complement subject NOUN following "is", so here you would use "niet" to negate the adjective.

German has very similar rules with "kein/keine", so if you know German, that's a bit of an advantage. Both "kein" in German and "geen" in Dutch literally mean "not a", so that's why they negate nouns. (You couldn't say "The apple is not a yellow", but you can say, "He is not a girl"). Anyway, hope this helps to clear it up a bit.

May 21, 2019


The literal translation should be counted as correct: The deer speaks no English."

July 10, 2019


Unless it's Chopper in the English dub.

August 7, 2019
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