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  5. "It is not important."

"It is not important."

Translation:Het is niet belangrijk.

July 24, 2014



would "het is belangrijk niet" correct?


No. That would not be correct.

Actually, depending on the pronunciation and the punctuation, it can mean the opposite! In some languages (also in Dutch) a sentence can be followed by a (retorical) question with a negation in it.

  • English: 'It is important, isn't it?' or maybe even shortened: 'It is important, no?'.
  • Dutch: 'Het is belangrijk, is het niet?' or shortened: 'Het is belangrijk, niet?'.


very clear, many thanks!


I had the same question as /u/jpippoj, and although your answer is thorough and makes sense, I now have a follow-up question:

In the examples shown to us in duolingo thus far, it is common to add "niet" at the end of the sentence when one wants to declare the negative. I am sorry I don't recall specific examples, but that (and the language's similarity to German, with which I'm quite familiar) led my decision. I am trying to say that there are obviously cases where your explanation doesn't apply (again, sorry for the lack of examples).

What would be the distinction between those cases and the one here?


You are correct. I think you are referring to cases such as:

  • Hij leert niet: he doesn't learn.
  • Zij ziet mij niet: she doesn't see me.

You will find the answer to your question here.

In this case ('het is niet belangrijk') 'niet' comes before an adjective.


Thank you for that link! Incredibly helpful!


This link was given above, and I've found it very helpful: http://nl.ver-taal.com/gr_ontkenning.htm


how do you pronounce 'belangrijk' and 'moeilijk' (misspelt probably - sorry)?


the dutch spelling "ij" is pronounced sort of like the english "ey", but longer and slightly different tone.Think of the Fonz saying "eyyyyyyy", it's a little like that.


To add to this, "-lijk" is 'special' in the sense that it doesn't have the usual ij-sound. It sounds like "u" in "bus".

This includes words like "moeilijk", "makkelijk", "letterlijk", "smakelijk", etc.


Oooh, this is one part I have to remember to discard, because my Flemish wife always makes fun of Dutch people who she hears pronounce "smakelijk" like that.



When do I use geen? (2)


This link was given above, and I've found it very helpful: http://nl.ver-taal.com/gr_ontkenning.htm


How come belangrijke is incorrect


What if 'het is belangrijke niet.'?


Have a look at vam1980's post from a year ago.


thanks! wow you've learned so many languages.


Why 'geen' is not used in this sentence?

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