The sentence would be "je bent geen man" - you are no man. "Niet" is used as a negation of an action, so "het spijt me niet" works because it's negating the action rather than the object, "me". "Geen" is used when you're referring to the object, so we can say "je spreekt niet", but we can't say "je spreekt niet nederlands" which should be "je spreekt geen nederlands".
I don't exactly know why this is, translating from English makes it hard to understand why the separation exists, but it is relatively clear from observation - when the action is being negated (I don't /walk/ to the park, I don't /run/ across the street, etc.), "niet" is used, and when the object is being negated (I walk to no /parks/, I run across no /streets/, etc.), "geen" is used.
Hope that helps!
Ps. question for native Dutch speakers, or just people who are more knowledgeable about it than me, would "je bent niet een man" translate as "you are not being / acting like a man" (seeing that there are cultural ideas as to what "being a man" is that do not always take into account whether a person is actually a man)? IE. Could the sentence work if it is interpreted as being the continuous present rather than the simple present? Or am I thinking too idiomatically? Or something else?
A bit confused by this: On previous translations, when they want you to translate "sorry" to English, it's obviously spelt the same. However now they're saying "spijt" to mean sorry? So could I use both, or am I missing something here?
In English, we really just have the one word "sorry". But other languages have more than one word. Sometimes they're synonyms, sometimes they indicate a different sense of the word. Like "sorry" can be an apology or it can be an expression of sympathy. And in English, we say "to be sorry", where "sorry" is an adjective.
In this case here, the word "spijt" literally means "regret" or "sorrow", and if you look at the whole sentence, "spijt" is a verb. Word for word, this says "It sorrows me not" or perhaps "It pains me not".
Actually I never even thought of the fact that we use words other than "sorry" to apologize. Considering I'm studying literature at university as well, I've realized how one dimensional my post was! But thank you, have a lingot. :)
As an eingineer and like to make sense of my world. This language is proving veey difficult me. The dutch word for sorry is just "sorry" which is simple. Yet if i want to say "i am sorry" its "Het spijt me" the word sorry isnt even in this sentence? Like where does it go? Its so frustraing and i previously learned that "Het" mean "the" yes its not here either????
I'm afraid language is nothing like engineering. Different languages are formed differently and have different rules. You can't apply the rules of one language to another.
The Dutch word "sorry" is a borrowing from English and its usage is generally limited to simple apologies, as when you bump into someone while walking.
Yes, "het" means "the" but it also means "it".
"Spijt" is a verb and means roughly "to cause sorrow". Word for word, "Het spijt me niet" is "It sorrows me not". We do have something similar in English, though, despite being a bit archaic: "It pains me". For example, "Much as it pains me to say it, no one is having any more ice cream this week."