"If you do not have it, then where is the bag?"
Translation:Als jij hem niet hebt, waar is de tas dan?
Word order is making me tear my hair out. I have read the explanation of all the different word orders and where they go (https://www.duolingo.com/comment/3733010), and I still end up with things like
Als hebt je het niet, dan waar de tas is?
No matter how many times I practice, I get any sentences involving these problems, starting around conjunctions, wrong about half the time, even when I know the sentences almost by heart because I've practiced so many times.
I try to follow the weird exception rules, but I guess the wrong weird exception often enough that I might as well be guessing at random. It's very frustrating.
Does anyone have advice on a more systematic way to try to understand this? I feel like a piece of my brain must be broken.
It's heb je, not hebt je because you take away the T when the verb comes before je/jij.
It's "waar is de tas" because it's a question. Verb comes before the noun, same as in English.
The placement of "dan" is harder. I guess you just put it at the end in Dutch. Word order does my head in too, but I've been slowly getting better! Just keep practising!?
I really struggled with word order but signed up to an online course (learndutch.org) which explained it all brilliantly - and provided a neat summary table so you know. It cost money but was well worth it. I don't get it right all the time but at least I have some idea. There are basically three situations 1) standard word order (I have ...) 2) inverted word order (have I ... instead of I have...) 3) subclause word order (I...[other words]... have)
It depends on the conjunction and the order of the sentence. There are five conjunctions which don't change word order. To make it confusing a few of the conjuctions have different meaning if used with inversion or subclause word order.
In this example you have subclause word order in the first half of the sentence because of "als".
Duo didn't tell me my sentence was wrong because of "het", it didn't underline the word, but it did mark me wrong for " dan waar is" in stead of "waar is dan"
So now I am curious... "Het" is definitely wrong here, right? And "dan waar is" is the wrong word order?
Yes, it's a subclause despite being the first half of the sentence, because the sentence starts with "Als".
I have posted elsewhere in this email chain on this issue. I also found sentence order really confusing and even some Dutch people couldn't explain it clearly to me but two websites were really helpful at explaining the rules - learndutch.org and dutchgrammar.com Once you underestand the rules it's (quite) easy!