Duolingo is the most popular way to learn languages in the world. Best of all, it's 100% free!

"They do not have menus"

Translation:Zij hebben geen menu's

4 years ago

12 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/j4079803

Why do the Dutch use an apostrophe on menu's??

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/homesliceburns

You place an apostrophoe+s ('s) on words that end in a single vowel (that are becoming plural), unless the vowel is an "e" (which then you would use just an "s")

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ikamjh
Ikamjh
  • 22
  • 16
  • 10
  • 7

Why doesn't "Zij hebben niet menu's" work?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/stefott
stefott
  • 25
  • 25
  • 24
  • 22
  • 20
  • 20
  • 18
  • 14
  • 12
  • 12
  • 12
  • 7
  • 7
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
  • 70

Just as German uses 'nicht' and 'kein', Dutch uses 'niet' en 'geen' to negate sentences.

You use 'geen' if you want to negate a noun. In English you can rephrase the sentence to use 'no' in these cases:

  • They do not have menus. -> They have no menus.

So the Dutch sentence uses 'geen':

  • Zij hebben geen menu's.

On the other hand, say you want to negate a verb:

  • They do not swim.

English can't rephrase this sentence using 'no' so the Dutch sentence uses 'niet':

  • Zij zwemmen niet.
4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ikamjh
Ikamjh
  • 22
  • 16
  • 10
  • 7

Well I understand that you can use "geen" but I was asking if it is possible to use "niet" too. Because I would think that "hebben" is a verb that can be negated if "niet" is used the same way "zwemmen" can be. I would think that there is probably some correct way to phrase this with "hebben" and "niet" or is there not? Is it correct if I switched "Zij hebben niet menu's" to "Zij hebben menu's niet"?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/stefott
stefott
  • 25
  • 25
  • 24
  • 22
  • 20
  • 20
  • 18
  • 14
  • 12
  • 12
  • 12
  • 7
  • 7
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
  • 70

'Zij hebben de menu's niet.' is possible, but then you mustn't forget the definite article :)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ikamjh
Ikamjh
  • 22
  • 16
  • 10
  • 7

Why do you need the article? Does Dutch use articles more liberally than English?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/stefott
stefott
  • 25
  • 25
  • 24
  • 22
  • 20
  • 20
  • 18
  • 14
  • 12
  • 12
  • 12
  • 7
  • 7
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
  • 70

No, it's because the meaning changes:

  • Zij hebben geen menu's - They don't have (any) menus
  • Zij hebben de menu's niet - They don't have the menus

You can't rephrase the second English sentence using 'no' so you have to use 'niet'. It's just how Dutch works.

The use of 'geen' and 'niet' is explained in more detail here: http://www.dutchgrammar.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=406

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN
tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN
  • 25
  • 25
  • 22
  • 18
  • 16
  • 16
  • 13
  • 13
  • 12
  • 11
  • 11
  • 10
  • 10
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 7
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 3
  • 3
  • 3
  • 3

"geen" negates a noun that would normally have the indefinite article "een" by replacing it.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Elardus

stefott, thanks for your valuable explanations so far but ikamjh's third question is still unanswered: Since you can say 'Zij hebben de menu's niet', why does it have to include the definite article? Is it absolutely wrong to say 'Zij hebben menu's niet'? as translation for English article-less 'they don't have menus'?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/daphna0808

why zij and not ze?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/xMerrie
xMerrie
Mod
  • 24
  • 20
  • 18
  • 17
  • 11
  • 11
  • 11
  • 6

Both are accepted.

1 year ago