Yes! That even follows the standard subject verb object pattern, which is switched around in the answer. One is not favoured above the other, in this particular case, though.
I thought the main subject-main verb word order was strict. Can the object come first in any Dutch sentence?
Yes, so long as the verb comes second. It's the "verb second in a statement" rule that is strict!
So, is there any difference? Does one emphasize on something and the other doesn't?
Because that would mean something different. That would be Men not including women and children, don't eat that.
Why is this not translated to "That one does not eat?" How would you translate that sentence?
"Die eet niet". "dat" in this sentences points to an object which is not eaten by "men". "die" in "die eet niet" points to a person (or animal). You can also say "diegene eet niet" or "die persoon eet niet" (that person doesn't eat).
So 'men' is not like the English 'one', which indicates both a number or people in general, correct?
Men indeed refers to people in general, but it's not a number. The English number one translates to één in Dutch.
I am dutch, but I think that 'one' in English means the same as 'men' in Dutch. (Or it just means that my English is not so good)
Usage, yes, believe so. (One doesn't do that, one doesn't eat that etc).
Gramatically, "one" is the neuter, indefinite equivalent of he/she (the french "on"). It's not used much, but is still more core to the grammar than "mens" in Dutch.
I misunderstood it to mean, 'That doesn't eat men.' As in a giant dinosaur who looks ferocious, but is vegetarian. There are strange examples sometimes.
-- Informational Addendum --
Stern, H in Essential Dutch Grammar (1984), p. 41:
The indefinite pronoun men may be translated into English as "one", "they", "you", "people," or sometimes with a passive construction. The main idea is that of action performed by an unspecified agent or agents. The focus of attention is the activity and not the agent, and so the agent need not be identified. Men always requires a verb in the third person singular:
- Men zegt dat zij een grote zangeres is = They say she is a great singer.
- Men heeft hem erg bewonderd = He was greatly admired.
- Men moet dieven met dieven vangen = It takes a thief to catch a thief (One must catch thieves with thieves).
In the spoken language it is more common to use je (you) or ze (they) as the subject of this type of sentence. In this respect, Dutch and English usage are quite similar:
- Ze zeggen dat het mooi weer blijft = They say the weather will stay nice.
- Je kunt nooit weten of... = You can never tell/know if...
As in English, Dutch has no specific "you" or "they" in mind in such statements.
I realize that we've been too strict with alternatives for this sentence so far. If you're certain that we've missed your correct alternative, please report :)
hmm. i was mistaken with the word order and thought it meant "that does not eat you". haha. but seriously, how would that be written differently?
Hmm yeah, I interpreted it as "That does not eat people." Can someone help me with why this interpretation is wrong?
That means in dutch " Dat eet geen mensen ". That is if "that" eats people.
That's also what I got out of it.
And I also want to know how that would be said now.
That would be "niemand eet dat". It sounds a bit stronger (in Dutch as well as in English).
Hm, I would have translated "Dat eet men niet" as "that's not edible," which is possibly factually more absolute than "nobody eats that," even if the "nobody" sounds stronger.
No one is translated differently. "One" does not necessarily mean everyone, but it would have to mean that to negate it with "no one".
I dont get how we are supposed to know that the subject is men and not dat. "That doesnt eat one". Any tips?
I'm confused as to the structure of this sentence. "That eat man not"
"That don't eat one" is the first thing that came to mind.
I don't think they sound that similar. The Dutch "men" sounds like the English "men" while "man" sound more like the beginning of "money".
Actually, it seems to be pretty similar to the german "man" in terms of usage. Well it doesn't sound very similar...
"Men" is used in general, it's not referring to specific people, the same goes for this usage of "one" in English. So it's a general statement, for that simple present tense is used in English: One does not eat that.
"That isn't eaten" should be accepted as a valid answer, on the analogy of "Hier spreekt men Nederlands" meaning "Dutch is spoken here". In other words, Dutch use of the impersonal "men" in an active sentence frequently corresponds to English use of the passive.
One has never refered to oneself in this very old fashioned way before....
I think I'll just stick to 'I do not eat that...' I suppose if I ever need to quote Lord of the Rings in Dutch it could come in handy...
"One does not simply walk into Mordor"
Men loopt niet eenvoudig Mordor Binnen????
It's still extremely old-fashioned, though. People just don't talk like that -- N.B. not: "one doesn't talk like that"!
I was just getting ready to make this reference!! Great minds Tom, great minds...
Aside from that, I actually do still use 'One', mainly when explaining things online, I don't use it in day to day life. I think it has great usage.
I didn't see anyone proposing "that one does not eat" - which in English is stressing "that" but I don't see why it is not accepted as a translation in this case, can anyone help me out?
Why is this sentence inverted? Is it a question like "you don't eat that (it's not food?)" but with a punctuation typo?
Because, in a statement, the main verb must always be the second element in the sentence. Thus, Ik ga naar Amsterdam (1. ik 2. ga 3. naar Amsterdam) but Morgen ga ik naar Amsterdam (1. morgen 2. ga 3. ik 4. naar Amsterdam). In this exercise we have 1. dat 2. eet 3. men 4. niet.
Agree with another comment below, this sentence is unnatural in modern English, it is EXTREMELY formal/old English. So after reading the comments I am wondering if this is simply a 'can't really be translated' scenario. After learning another language there were some things that didn't translate well from Chinese to English so perhaps this one for Dutch.
So to help understand when to use this, would a scenario for this sentence be something like there is a garnishing on food which is used for decoration but someone doesn't know that and their friends says "Dat eet men niet"? Or...?
I translated it as 'people don't eat that', and it was accepted because, as you've said, 'one' is very formal and old-fashioned.
They really need to pack it in with rhis 'one does not' BS. Super poor translation.
How do we know that we are not looking at bears, tigers, sharks, etc. that could eat one and then point to a lamb "That does not eat one"? Okay, I should have gone with the more common possibility.
Because 'men' means 'one', as a pronoun. It's a general reference for anyone. Compare to the French 'on'.
Because you are mixing up two languages. Your sentence would be translated as "Dat eten mannen niet."
because women and children don't, either. And really, I think it means more like: that's not for eating, that's not edible, that's not something people eat. (Wax model sushi, dirt, the wax on the outside of the cheese as opposed to an edible rind, etc)
You sure? I've heard this usage for things that are not meant for eating. They might not literally kill you (you can eat the wax from cheese, i guess, if you really insist, or swallow a fake candy made of glass and it will pass through you) but they're not for eating.
I won't eat that or you won't eat that is a more realistic way to say it being an Australian
What is this language? It's like a waking nightmare that I can't get enough of.
Why is "That is not to be eaten" wrong? It's a better translation than the suggested "One does not eat that"!
man (singular) and mannen (plural) = for the english word Man (sing)/Men(plural) and men (singular) and mensen (plural) = for the english word one and people
Is my summary above correct or am I completely off track... - pl advise
You are right about man / mannen for man / men (as opposed to women).
But it's mens / mensen for human / humans (as opposed to other animals).
As for men = one (as in "One can never be sure" / "Men kan nooit zeker zijn"), that word has no plural. It's simply an extra, indefinite personal pronoun. Best to forget about any connection to either man or mens!
Putting the object first is simply a stylistic choice: it puts the focus on the object, highlights it.
Dat eet men niet. We don't eat that (or in English, too, you can say: That, we don't eat).
Placing no particular emphasis on the object (dat/that) we could, of course, simply say: Men eet dat niet; We don't eat that.
But, whichever way we say it, in Dutch the verb must always be the SECOND idea in the statement.
1 ...... 2 .... 3 ......4
Men EET dat niet
Dat EET man niet
(I've translared "men" as "we" in these examples because although it's formally "the impersonal 'one'" the use of "one" is much too stiff in English.)
I understand your point about the verb. However, I still do not understand how we are supposed to know who is doing the "not eating." I took it to mean something doesn't eat one/doesn't eat people, with "dat" being the one doing the action (of not eating.)
Why "Someone does not eat that" is wrong? In english, seems to be closer to the intended meaning...