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  5. "Wanneer het koud is, draagt …

"Wanneer het koud is, draagt zij een jas."

Translation:When it is cold, she wears a coat.

July 21, 2014



Is there a reason 'draag' is after 'zij'? Can - zij draagt een jas? - work?


This is inversion caused by the placement of the main clause and the subordinate clause:

  • Wanneer het koud is, draagt zij een jas. (main clause after the subordinate clause)
  • Zij draagt een jas wanneer het koud is (main clause with normal word order when it's before the subordinate clause)


So if I understand correctly: in Dutch, you can have three basic word orders? i.e. SVO in the main clause, VSO in the inverted main clause, and SOV in the subordinate clause? That is so terribly confusing.


What you are describing is the situation in German. In Dutch it's even worse: As the language is right in the process of updating the word order in subordinate clauses to the latest trend, some types of subordinate clause still have the traditional SOV word order and some already have the more progressive SVO word order. (Correction: Technically these are not considered subordinate clauses, though this may just be a matter of time as Dutch word order is evolving further.)

In English, SOV word order has survived as a way to express a specific meaning of have: "I have that done" vs. "I have done that". I think that's the only such remnant, though.

But VSO is still very common in English: Like Dutch and German, it uses VSO as the normal question word order. Question word order starts with the verb because the verb is stressed. (Do you verb or not? Unless there is another question word such as which or where -- which then comes first in all three languages -- the verb is clearly at the centre of a question.) In Dutch and German, a main clause that follows a subordinate clause is handled the same way because its verb is also stressed -- though to a lesser extent.


Vam1980 is right. The Michel Thomas Dutch course calls this the omdat effect. Subordinate clauses introduced by certain words, including omdat, have essentially the original proto-Germanic word order with the main verb in last position. The normal word order in main clauses is derived from this by moving the main verb to second position (right after the subject), but leaving anything else that depends on it in place. Example: "Het is koud geweest." The full predicate is is geweest (has been), but only the main verb is is moved to second position.

So this type of subordinate clause is actually more straightforward than main clauses, though I guess it sounds more foreign to English speakers.


Apart from the word order: I do stumble about je vs. jij quite often. When a sentence is presented as audio, it is quite hard to differentiate between them (usually I type along right away while listening).

For me, both seem to really be interchangeable. That is, unless you would want to stress the je. Is that a correct assumption or is there any additional rule that would apply here, IOW are there situations in which je would definitely be wrong and you'd have to use jij?


I stumbled upon a situation of comparison where i had to use the stressed version. Something like I am doing this and she is doing that


From what I understand (and I'm not a native speaker) the only purpose of it is to stress/ empathaise


can you say whenever?


Why not 'zij een jas draagt'??


For the reasons explained by Simius, we need a different kind of inversion here than the one in subordinate clauses:

  • SVO in normal main clauses.
  • VSO in questions and in main clauses that follow a subordinate clause.
  • SOV in subordinate clauses.


  • S = subject (e.g. zij)
  • V = verb (e.g. draagt)
  • O = object (e.g. een jas)

This is just the simple case, when the verb phrase consists of a single word.


okay, thanks a lot! ^^


The second part ("draagt zij een jas") is the main clause, not the subordinate clause (which starts with the conjunction "wanneer"). The main conjugated verb is always the second element of the sentence, in Dutch. Because the first element is the subordinate clause ("Wanneer het koud is"), there is inversion in the main clause ("zij" and "draagt" switch places) to keep the verb in the second place. See also: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/V2_word_order


okay, thanks a lot! ^^


Wanneer is het koud, draagt zij een jas. How do I ask: When it is cold, is she wearing a jacket?


Wanneer is het koud, draagt zij een jas? How do I ask: When it is cold, is she wearing a jacket? As opposed to: Wanneer het koud is, draagt zij een jas? When it is koud, she wears a jacket.


I have a huge problem with this sentence, jacket should also be accepted for jas, not true?


Why can this not be " . . . carries a jacket" ?


The words "een <some garment> dragen" can mean both "to wear a garment" or if you take "dragen" literally, "to carry a garment". In this case the context tells you that it should be "to wear", because carrying a jacket doesn't make you any less cold ;-)

But literally, it could indeed mean "carries a jacket".


I live in a warm day/cold night climate, where temps may fall from 40°C to 10°C in just a few hours on a summers eve. The coat that is carried / taken / shlept at 5PM is worn at 7PM. Please translate the following if you would be so kind :

"At five o'clock in the Hollywood Bowl, anyone not a tourist is shlepping a jacket. At nine o'clock in the Hollywood Bowl, anyone not a tourist is wearing a jacket. Twixt seven and nine, all who are out themselves."



For disambiguation, where required (or for stylistic reasons) you can use aanhebben for wearing and bij zich dragen for carrying around with you:

"Om vijf uur draag ik een jas bij me. Om negen uur heb ik hem aan."

As you used the verb s[c]hlep (of Yiddish/German origin), you may also be interested in the Dutch verb slepen, which means drawing or towing a heavy load. But it would be extreme hyperbole to apply it to a jacket.


Thanks. To shlep is always with humorous overtones due to the Yiddish origins in American English, like in Dutch it means to drag or tow, and was consciously hyperbolic but commonly used for little things in European Yiddish. This has become muted down to just a humorous way to imply not just carry, but that the object mitshlepped (this latter expression is Hebonic, not general English - there just schlepped is most likely) will be needed in some way. The American usage has backfed into modern Yiddish, and would not be as hyperbolic in Yiddish now as in my grandfolks' day.


Ah, thanks. That's pretty much what I suspected. This hyperbolic use is not at all unheard-of for native German speakers, either, and I expect it's the same in Dutch. But obviously when a word is incorporated into English it tends to occupy a different ecological niche.

I just learned two very nice new words: Hebonics and to mitshlep. Thanks! Unfortunately it appears that Hebonics doesn't seem to leave a lot of written traces. Currently there are 0 Google hits for mitshlepped and the few for mitschlepped are clearly from native German speakers who got an overdose of English spelling.


Thanks for your khenedik remarks. (gracious, < /ħen/ חן grace in Hebrew, often Anglicized to Chen and rendered [xɛn] as a first name for girls)

I'd guess 'Hebonics' and 'mitshlep' are unlikely to make it mainstream, but I did see this: "The New York City Public Schools have officially declared Hebonics (Jewish English) as a second language. Backers of the move say the city schools are the first in the nation to recognize Hebonics as a valid language and a significant attribute of American culture. According to Howard Schollman, linguistics professor at Brooklyn College and renowned Hebonics scholar, the sentence structure of Hebonics derives from middle and eastern European language patterns, as well as Yiddish."

The west coast versions of Seattle and Los Angeles are more likely to incorporate Hebrew, Spanish, Arabic and Persian terms as well than the Yiddish dominated Yinglish of NY. I grew up on a ranch midway twixt Malibu and Thousand Oaks in the western Santa Monica Mountains, so my Hebonics sit atop a 100% Santa Barbara Channel accented version of rustic Californian. That itself comes from general Canadian not general American, so forget the NYC Jewish sound of the stereotypes.

I do have a 'Turkish' so to speak accent to my Spanish, I mention as I see you're doing Turkish. The easy give-aways from Kasteyano are conservative palatals not /x/ and voiced fricatives and that the basic form of g is fricative ɣ, so cat is always /ɣato/, standard Spanish needs a preceding vowel in the same syllable to provoke the softer sound. My great-grandfather brought one of my grandmothers to America from Constantinople, she was a rarity in that she could speak Turkish in an era when the only non-Jewish language that the women from there typically could speak was Greek. I never learned any, nor did my Dad. The only fora I write much in (with name expanded back to Kit di Pomi, nice Italian Jewish family name) are in Spanyol ya'ani Judeo-Spanish most of the speakers of which are divided between Turkey and Israel. Those are Sefaradimuestro (moderated in Turkey and thus quietly censored) and Ladinokomunita (moderated in Texas by a Turkish Jewess) - their language often has Turkish expressions and has Latinized orthography to accommodate the Turkish Jews. The official body is (funny name for an Israeli government office, the only one I know of not in Hebrew) "La Autoridad Nasionala para Ladino" at aki-yerushalayim.co.il We do have a number of turkizmos, it is even rumored that the Spanyol use of 'buz' for ice is behind the English 'booze.'

So, do you reckon the Turkish difficult?


Carrying a jacket on your back?


Like mentioned above, there is no differentiation except by context between carrying or wearing something. Usually if someone would carry around something that is usually worn it is being mentioned by a sidenote ;)


Why is it "wanneer het koud is" and not "als het koud is"?


Both are possible.


So I got a wrong answer when I wrote "als het koud is" - will report it next time! Thanks for your time.


No need to report it, since it's already accepted and has been for at least two years. There must have been another mistake in your answer.


Will look more closely next time! Thanks.


I'm not quite sure why progressive is marked wrong.

when it is cold she is wearing a coat

Submitted it, just to be safe.
Does it not run with causals?


Yes, I think that would mean something like: Each time it is cold, she happens to be wearing a coat for unrelated reasons. This almost never makes sense.


Still cannot say that i actually get it but an idea starts to build. So if I limit the duration progressive could be used?

While it is cold she is wearing a coat


Why sometimes we say that (she) is (zij) and other times it is (ze)


"when it is cold she is wearing a coat" is wrong?


here in the dutch course they are quite exact about the s and ing forms .. more so that native english speakers ;)


Why is "wanneer het is koud.." wrong?

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