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  5. "Our names are not William an…

"Our names are not William and Saskia."

Translation:Onze namen zijn niet Willem en Saskia.

July 19, 2014



I really don't think names should be translated...


Why not? In the end, there is no problem with translating them, as they seem to emerge from a single source far before our days, and have been adapted in all European countries, but were accordingly adjusted to the respective languages spoken. I have no problem with either version of William — may it be Enrique in Spain, Wilhelm in Germany, or Guillaume in France.


Historically, names have often been translated into local forms. The Elector (Kurfürst) of the Palatinate, Johann Wilhelm II (d. 1716), who ruled from Düsseldorf, was (and is) known as Jan-Wellem. The language spoken there in his time was a Low German dialect related to the family of Limburgisch dialects spoken in the adjacent parts of what are now the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany.


Everytime I see the word "namen" I think "namen noodles"


Oh what a tangled web we weave......


why not "geen" instead of "niet"?


Niet and geen is the same as not and no in English.

He is not going to school - Hij gaat niet naar school

He has no money - Hij heeft geen geld


I should not get marked with a typo for not translating names...


Can "niet" come at the end of the sentence?


Not in this sentence.


I'm not sure (I'm only a beginner) but I saw in other comments that when you put the "Niet" in the end of the sentence, you neglect the whole sentnce. This hints that maybe they don't have names, which is impossible. So, you have to put the "Niet" in this case before what you want to neglect, thier names, in order to suggest that they have different names. However, I'm not really sure, and I will grateful to have someone fix me. Bedankt!


I still don't understand why 'niet' can't go at the end in this example.

If what you said is true, wouldn't

Ik drink de melk niet.

also negate the whole sentence, meaning that I don't drink at all?


Now that I've advanced to the adverb lessons of the Dutch course, I see a possible reason to explain the placement of 'niet' here. Since 'niet' is an adverb, it will come after 'de' nouns following a verb, which explains the placement in the sentence "Ik drink de melk niet." Otherwise, an adverb will come immediately after the verb, as in the example "Onze namen zijn niet Willem en Saskia." It's just a guess.


WFsvHJ - so, any noun with de or het, you put niet at the end of the sentence/clause? But if there's no de or het, niet is placed directly after the verb?


mayanchesna - That's just my guess. I was also wondering whether niet can be placed both before and after de or het words. Then I ran into this exercise:


I tried the answer "Hij drinkt niet de melk" and it was marked wrong. So I guess maybe this example indeed suggests that 'niet' can only be placed after the de/het words.

Of course, there is also the word 'geen' which should be placed before non-specific direct objects, like "We zijn geen jongens."


"Willem en Saskia zijn onze namen niet." It's correct Dutch, but it sounds a bit awkward. Most native Dutch speakers wouldn't say it that way.


What's the difference between ons and onze..?


As a pronoun, ons = "us" is the objective form of wij/we = "we":
Geef ons heden ons dagelijks brood = Give us our daily bread

As a determiner, ons = "our" is the neuter, singular possessive form:
Geef ons heden ons dagelijks brood = Give us our daily bread

In the latter role, for all other forms, use onze = "our":
Geef ons onze paarden = Give us our horses


ons for het words and onze for de words


Up until now, Duolingo has ignored regional spelling of names and accepted whatever name was on the question without translation. Now I'm getting marked down for writing "William" when "William" is in the question. I'd find it quite insulting if someone translated my name to a local equivalent.


Name should not be translated


There is a mistake here, William and Willem are being translated which i think is wrong.


I thought that the 'niet' would have gone at the end of the sentence.


Wij heten niet Willem en Saskia" isn't correct?


The meaning is more or less the same, but Duo is looking for a closer translation. That would be more "we are called Willem and Saskia"

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