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  5. "Ja, het spijt me."

"Ja, het spijt me."

Translation:Yes, I am sorry.

July 17, 2014



Translated literally, does this mean something like "it spites me?"

It seems similar to the German apology: "es tut mir leid." ("It does me pain.")


According to my dictionary and the hover hint here, "spijt" means "regret" (as a noun or a verb form). If this were correct, the literal translation would be "it / that regret(s) me", but that seems rather weird in English.


You're right jjd1123, spijt means regret. And CaveatEmptor you're right as wel, it's used in exactly the same way as the German es tut mir leid.


in italian we have "mi (di)spiace which we have to translate with "I'm sorry" in english, but being sorry someway implies that's your fault while mi spiace just means you are sad about it. is "het spijt me" more like mi spiace?


My teacher in German told me once the same things. It appears to be that by saying "Entschuldigung" that's your fault, while saying "Es tut mir leid" only means you are sorry about it but it's not your fault


Hmmm. I don't see the link to "it's my fault when I apologise". Of course it's used that way in both Dutch and English, but it's also used when the 'fault' is unknown or somewhere else, e.g.

  • Het spijt me, de kaartjes zijn uitverkocht = I'm sorry, the tickets are sold out
  • Deze weg is dicht door werkzaamheden, het spijt me, u zal moeten omrijden = This road is closed due to road works, I'm sorry, you'll have to take a detour


but so is it okay to answer I'm sorry (or het spijt me) when for example one tells you about a disgrace he had? that's what I meant, like "I'm sad for you" without being anyway involved.


Yes Miaa102664, it is okay to answer I'm sorry to mean I'm sad for you. (I'm sorry means literally "it gives me sorrow". ) To be more specific you could say "I'm sorry to hear that".


Is het spijt me more formal, or is this used in everyday Dutch?


It's used in both formal and informal Dutch, but when used informally it's quite a strong sign of regret, a lot stronger than sorry. In formal use it basically has the same meaning as an informal sorry.


"Het spijt me" is in the sense of "My apologies"


Right- it's "sorry" but formal.


While I always appreciate the hover hints, they seldom provide complete information for one word.

This link lends at least some validity to my idea:


Lot's of real things sound weird in English. "Remember me to her" is an actual English expression that simply means "tell her I said hi."


Yes, that's why I checked a dictionary in addition. And the link you posted claims that the Dutch word "spijt" and the English word "despite" have the same etymology (from Old French "despit"), but not that "spijt" means "spite" in any way. In fact, it tells you that the meaning is "regret". If you then follow the link to "spijten":


you will also find that wiktionary gives both "to cause regret to, to cause to be sorry" and "to regret, to be sorry" as meanings. In my opinion this would make more sense as a translation here, because I'm at least not aware of any English phrase like "that regrets me" meaning "I regret that".


I was confused since I'm French and I didn't know "despit" (which is dépit in modern french), I've learn something.


Despite signifie en fait en dépit de (spite of aussi).

Mais fais gaffe, despite of ne fonctionne pas!


I'd like to think it means something like "it is regretful to me," just like in spanish you say "a mi, me parece" or in french you say "il me semble..."


Literally 'het spijt me' means "I regret it" or "it regrets me (to have to inform you)" which can translate to one possible way of saying sorry with the sense of feeling regret (either for your actions or what you have to tell them).


I don't think so. Spite means something different in English.


After neglecting my Duolingo for a long while I came back and somewhat instinctively tried "Yes, excuse me", which is Wrong, but the correction offered "Yes, forgive me". To me, "het spijt me" = "forgive me" makes a lot more sense than "I am sorry", it's a much more direct translation.


I accidentally typed "Yea" for "Yes". Shouldn't it count as a typo?


For me, as a native English speaker, "yea" and "yes" are pretty interchangeable, but in some contexts demonstrate different levels of formality. Typically, I actually spell it "yeah."

Although, historically speaking, "yea" tends to be the spelling for an older word that in English I only encountered in the Bible as a child. ("Yea, verily I say unto thee.") It's pronounced in that context more like "yay."

Here are some more ideas on the subject: http://www.writersdigest.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=73609


Is this or the English 'sorry' more frequently used in conversational Dutch?

[deactivated user]

    I said this like "Yah, he spit on me"


    Why use the word het before spijt?


    Because it translates roughly to "Yes, it does me regret." But the approximate translation to English is "I'm sorry," since that is the most common generic apology we have in English.


    anyone know why MIJ is not ok? has to be ME?


    native dutch here.

    mij should be correct as well.

    note: mij=stressed me=destressed


    I'm confused about the I/It switch here. "Het" usually means "it/the" so why is it that it represents "I" here? To those attempting to translate this phrase: some languages have phrases that cannot be translated or are idiomatic (a phrase that sounds odd to non-native speakers) For an example: "It's raining cats and dogs."


    The literal translation would be something along the lines of "It causes regret to me.". As you mentioned, not all phrases can or should be translated literally. "I am sorry." (or "I regret it.") is a better and more natural way to convey the same meaning in English.


    This isn't an I/it switch, it is more a subject/object switch with corresponding change of word order. Alghough that is also not quite it, since there is no explicit object in "I am sorry". A closer analogy might be "worry" instead of "sorry" where there are both constructions in English: "I am worried" corresponding to "I am sorry" vs. "It worries me" corresponding to "Het spijt mi"

    1. Sorry? Sorry is sorry I think
    2. About 3 months ago it said that het spijt mij can be translated as "excuse me". Can someone explain it to me?

    1. In Dutch, for instance when you bump into someone, you can say "Pardon" or "Sorry". "Het spijt me" is stronger and can be used when you want to apologise for doing something wrong, e.g.: "Het spijt me dat ik de avond verpest heb." (I'm sorry I ruined the night.)
    2. Since "het spijt me" is stronger, it's odd to use it for some quick/light apology where "excuse me" is used in English.


    So when i use spijt it means sorry? What is the difference between sorry and het spijt me?


    Sorry is a lighter form of apology, often used when bumping in to someone. Het spijt me is used when you want to apologies for something that you did wrong, e.g. "I'm sorry that I yelled at you".


    Advice about when to use het spijt me vs pardon vs sorry ?


    Can someone give some other examples of where Het is used before a verb other than the pronouns?


    i thought het means the so would it be like "yes the sorry me" ? ugh


    I think it states in English as "Yes, I regret it." Here, the "het" means it, and "spijt" means regret while "me" is an I. But like it is said by others, "I am sorry" is an often used to state as an apology, it's probably why it is stated here.


    Can't I just say, Ik ben sorry????


    As explained previously on this page. No you cannot.


    Is this shortened from: Ja, het spijt ik me?


    So I posted my answer as Yes, I regret it. I was marked wrong. But isn't that closer to the literal translation than "I'm sorry"??


    Makes sense as an impersonal verb in the same way as "it rains" or "it snows" (What's doing the raining/snowing? There's no real subject). "It regrets" works similarly, I guess, with what looks like a dative "me" "It regrets to me", a bit like the old English "It thinketh me" (I think). Irish plays a similar trick with Ta brón orm ("There is sadness on me") for I'm sorry. Isn't language great?


    Is there a definite ordering of words in dutch like 'subject, verb , object etc..' this sentence is highly jumbled difficult to understand someone say ben means am but here no ben os there still am is here so confusing plz help someone


    The word sorry in English comes from sore, literally "it sores me".


    What's the difference between "het spijt me" and "sorry" ?


    Apparently capital letters are obligated, since a gave the following sentence: yes, I am sorry


    "Yes, he spit me"


    It is ridiculous not to accept the spelling I'm sorry


    I always thought it was "Het spijt mij". Was I misunderstanding, or are both me/mij acceptable?

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Da Real Pope

    The guy doesn't say "me".....


    Yeah she does. Unless you're hearing a different recording. "Het spijt me" = "I'm sorry"


    I get so confused with this, as Sorry, also means sorry- which makes sense!

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