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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pedrinhozinho1

How to say the expression "used to" in dutch

I am having trouble looking for a translation for the expression "used to" in dutch, for example: "I used to live in the united states". Do any of you know how to convey once habitual events?

July 26, 2014

10 Comments

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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kai_E.

I would use the simple past tense and a time adverb like "vroeger".

So for "I used to live in the United States." I would say "Ik woonde vroeger in de Verenigde Staten."

July 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Katherle

Kai, is it also possible to say "Ik placht in de Verenigde Staten te wonen"? This option exists in German (with the verb "pflegen"), but it sounds very formal/stilted.

July 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mar.Tijn

It is correct, but people would look really weird if you say that. And I don't think a lot of younger people would even understand you ;)

July 31, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kai_E.

Yup, that's possible too!

July 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Katherle

Thanks!

July 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kai_E.

No problem! I'll also add that it is pretty rarely used too.

July 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Yoruji

Emphasising that point here: I've never heard someone use the word "placht" before, and I'm a native living in the Netherlands. "Vroeger" is the most standard way to do this.

July 27, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pedrinhozinho1

Thank you so much!

July 27, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MystyrNile

So "Ik woonde in de Verenigde Staten" and "Ik woonde vroeger in de Verenigde Staten" insinuate different aspects?

July 30, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mar.Tijn

Adding "vroeger" implies it is longer ago. "Ik woonde in" can mean like you lived there last year. If you say "Ik woonde vroeger in", you haven't lived there in many years.

July 31, 2014
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