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

"We doen niets."

Translation:We are not doing anything.

4 years ago

23 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Albrechtion
Albrechtion
  • 25
  • 25
  • 25
  • 20
  • 18
  • 15
  • 14
  • 12
  • 12
  • 11
  • 8
  • 4
  • 4

Wij zijn Congress.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Katherle
Katherle
  • 25
  • 22
  • 12
  • 3

Can that also be used in the sense of "not dangerous", e.g. "De hond doet niets"?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/vam1980
vam1980
  • 25
  • 22
  • 12
  • 11
  • 9
  • 557

Yes!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Katherle
Katherle
  • 25
  • 22
  • 12
  • 3

Thanks! Just like in German, then :)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sks0315
sks0315
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 4
  • 2

I saw "niets" as "niet" and wrote "We don't". Haha silly me.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Susande
Susande
  • 21
  • 13
  • 12
  • 11
  • 125

That sentence doesn't work in Dutch, you need an object, e.g. We doen het niet.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Bruce_OBrien

Favourite hobby - Doing bugger all. - "We doen niets."

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/firerosearien
firerosearienPlus
  • 25
  • 24
  • 21
  • 15
  • 15
  • 13
  • 12
  • 11
  • 9
  • 5

Why "we" and not "wij"?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/johaquila
johaquila
  • 16
  • 16
  • 15
  • 15
  • 14
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10
  • 8

It doesn't matter, but you obviously have to pick one. We is more common than wij. But if the word is stressed, wij is the only option.

In translations, normally both should be accepted. In dictation exercises only the one that is actually spoken. Theoretically. In practice the fast voice pronounces both as we, and you must check with the slow voice.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Bruce_OBrien

Doen niets is mijn favoriet hobby. I enjoy learning Dutch on Duolingo. It is a lot more fun than trying to learn from a stupid book.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/johaquila
johaquila
  • 16
  • 16
  • 15
  • 15
  • 14
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10
  • 8

Infinitives are actually negated the other way round in Dutch: niets doen. This is just like in English:

  • to be or not to be = zijn of niet zijn
3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/roferretti

Where does the anything come from? My answer was we do nothing and it was wrong

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/johaquila
johaquila
  • 16
  • 16
  • 15
  • 15
  • 14
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10
  • 8

The problem has nothing to do with Dutch. "We do nothing" would be a correct translation if it were the normal way to put this in English, but it isn't. If it is used at all, it carries a special emphasis that is not at all implied by the Dutch sentence, though of course nobody prevents you from stressing niets a lot.

Personally I think it should be accepted, but it also makes some sense to reject it.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/roferretti

Wasn't anything iets? So we are not doint anything wouldnt be " Wij doen niets iets"?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/johaquila
johaquila
  • 16
  • 16
  • 15
  • 15
  • 14
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10
  • 8

No. Iets means something. Make sure not to confuse niets (nothing, not anything) with niet (not). You can think of niets as the contraction of niet iets.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/roferretti

I thought about it 2 minutes after that exercise but couldn't return to delete my comment. Thank you for clarifying!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ReneeDubuc

Would "We are doing nothing" be a better translation?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/johaquila
johaquila
  • 16
  • 16
  • 15
  • 15
  • 14
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10
  • 8

No, because the Dutch sentence is the normal idiomatic way of saying this in Dutch, whereas the literal translation "we are doing nothing" is considered unidiomatic (or reserved for special situations) by quite a few native English speakers nowadays.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ReneeDubuc

Is "niets" plural because the subject is plural?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/johaquila
johaquila
  • 16
  • 16
  • 15
  • 15
  • 14
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10
  • 8

Niets just means nothing and is not a plural. It just happens to end with an s.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TomerAshur

Woudn't is be better English to use the word "nothing"

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/johaquila
johaquila
  • 16
  • 16
  • 15
  • 15
  • 14
  • 14
  • 12
  • 10
  • 8

No. Although OK, that's just not the most idiomatic way to say it in English. (Don't ask me why. I guess in all other Germanic languages it is.)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Clarence254161

Just one thing. When I talk to people in the netherlands the say niets prounuoced niks! Why is dat?

9 months ago