1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Dutch
  4. >
  5. "Het ontbijt is een ei en kof…

"Het ontbijt is een ei en koffie."

Translation:Breakfast is an egg and coffee.

July 21, 2014



Duos translation on my end was "Breakfast is an egg and coffee".. Is there a reason why "the" wasn't used here? Do I have to say "het ontbijt" or can I just drop the het and say "Ontbijt is een ei en koffie"?


That is my question, too. I'd love a response from and admin. :)


I guess it's just because whereas in Dutch you need to use the definite article in this context, in English it'd be ungrammatical to say *The breakfast*...


There are many other places where using the definite article is very weird in English, but it still requires it in the translation. I guess it's just inconsistently applied, but it's going to get frustrating when it needs you to write out the whole thing and you have to remember which sentences want "the" and which don't rather than what's grammatically sensible in English.


There is a difference between grammaticaly incorrect/ incorrect translation, and just unconventional not frequently used sentences.


I tend to disagree cause we are describing the event. The breakfast is an egg and coffee


But that would sound strange in English. Most often we'd say "Breakfast is an egg and coffee" whether it's just on this particular occasion or generally.


I wouldn't be so picky that I'd mark "The breakfast" wrong though.


There is another question in this section "het middageten is rijst" and for that one, "the lunch..." is the provided English translation


If you say het ontbijt, you know which breakfast you are talking about. Usually the one you are about to have, but it could also be the breakfast that is served in the hotel you booked.

Ontbijt is .., is more general. Like you would say love is...

So gramatticaly not incorrect but only in a conversation about what breakfast constitutes for you. But .. Who has those kind of conversation

Another example; happiness is..(beer and a hammock).

(I think it might have something to do with being uncountable?) So only in those kind of cases it would Edit, month later: no idea where I was going with this last part... And I might have meant abstract instead of uncountable, but with me stopping midsentence we will never know..


When I said "The breakfast is A egg and coffee", it marked it wrong just for that tiny little mistake, but sometimes, like a recent problem before that, when I said "baname", instead of "banan", because I had to translate "banana", it marked it as correct, saying I had just misspelled that word. Can somebody tell me why that is?


In my experience, Duolingo will allow spelling mistakes as long as what you write is not another recognized word. Therefore, if you write "banama" instead of "banana" it will allow it as "banama" is not a word in English, whereas an input such as "bananas" might be flagged as wrong as this is essentially another word in the dictionary (according to Duolingo) and not a 'spelling mistake' variant of the correct word.


Oh ok, that makes sense. thanks!


I think it has to do with grammar, you should have used "an" because the following word starts with a vowel. That is my guess hope it helped!


Why is it 'het ontbijt'?


In contrast to "de ontbijt"? In most languages that classify nouns in certain groups the grammatical gender has no strict "why", based for example on the meaning of a word. It is simply a convention you have to learn. Why would it be "de ontbijt" instead?

However, if you want to learn more about Dutch's grammatical gender, maybe this is a good place to start: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gender_in_Dutch_grammar


why is "an egg and -a- coffee wrong?


Because the Dutch sentence simply says koffie which could be one/a coffee, but also unlimited amounts of coffee.


Wow the guy finally learned to speak softly. He doesn't sound as harsh (don't know how to describe it) as he used to. New audio or is it just the first few skills that are painfull to listen to and totally misrepresent the language.

Each lesson I thought my god, there is gonna be a whole bunch of people thinking we sound this awful.


I have translated "een" as one and it is counted as a mistake


'Een' means 'a/an' and 'één' means 'one'. ;)


If it says "het ontbijt" then you must translate it as "the breakfast" right????


Not really - you wouldn't say that in English.


The breakfast should also be correct.

Learn Dutch in just 5 minutes a day. For free.