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  5. "Wij koken hun een maaltijd."

"Wij koken hun een maaltijd."

Translation:We cook them a meal.

August 12, 2014



why hun and not ze or hen? Any natives know?


''ze'' can be used most of the time. It sounds less formal but otherwise it's always a good alternative as long as the word is not stressed.

''hun'' is used instead of ''hen'' because it's the indirect object (dative case) and because no preposition is used. ''hen'' is used as a direct object or when a preposition is used.

You can determine the indirect object by asking (if I remember correctly) "to/for whom + predicate + subject + direct object'' which would be ''for who do we cook a meal?'', the answer is: for them.

This probably sounds rather complicated, which is why most native speakers mix up hen and hun all the time. So no need to worry about it really.


It should be noted that the hen/hun distinction is made up a few centuries ago and therefore not really 'maintained' in informal context.


Danke sehr, RigelKentian. Alles klar!


How come you're responding in German, Matt?


Rigelkentian is, as far as I know, German. I spent a long time living in Germany as a young adult and speak it as comfortably as English, and prefer using it when speaking with Germans.


Is it sort of like mich vs mir or dich vs dir in German?


Yep. In particular like sie vs ihnen, in this case.


would it be safe to then assume that: "Wij koken HUN een maaltijd" = "We cook them a meal." While "Wij koken een maaltijd voor HEN" = "We cook a meal for them"?


wij koken hun een maaltijd is an odd-sounding sentence, but your point about "hun" and "voor hen" is correct.


The most common way to say this would be: wij koken een maaltijd voor ze (even more common is to leave the maaltijd out and say: wij koken voor ze). The DL sentence seems to be picked to appeal to English-speaking learners.


I think they're just trying to find a way to sneak in an indirect object using the verbs and vocab we've learned so far. :)


Why ze? Ze means they, r8ght?


If you use 'voor ze' instead of 'voor hen' it is grammaticly incorrect. Don't do it, because if you do, you will be more likely to use 'hun' at the start of the sentence(s). Keep in mind, that lots of native Dutch speakers do so and are not aware of it. Please, do not copy their incorrectness.


Yes, it does sound odd. It is a direct translation from English.


Wij koken hun een maaltijd is not how a Dutch person would express cooking them a meal. First of all the use of hun is incorrect here. hun can only be used if it expresses a possessive adjective, p. ex. :it is their meal.. 'het is hun maaltijd'. 'Wij koken hun maaltijd' therefore would mean 'we are cooking their meal'.

So most important of all, if you are not sure about the difference between 'hen' and 'hun' remember 'hun' is about possessing something.


Louise, "hun" is not merely used in possessive forms! I don't know why you would say that. In general, you use "hen" after a preposition, e.g.: "ik geef het boek aan hen" or "wij koken een maaltijd voor hen". If you leave out the preposition, use "hun": "ik geef hun het boek" or "Wij koken hun een maaltijd". The sentence is correct. See an explanation in Dutch here: https://onzetaal.nl/taaladvies/hun-hen/


Read again what I wrote.

Wij koken hun een maaltijd is not a sentence any Dutch person would say. Wij koken een maaltijd voor hen though is. Since you are cooking for someone the preposition is 'voor', hence hen..

Hope this helps. Source: being Dutch


Hi Louise, I agree that it is not very standard these days, but it is not incorrect.


It is incorrect but within twenty years it will be correct as many Dutch use hun/hen wrongly. If you want to sounds Dutch better to use it incorrect as then you'll make the same mistake many Dutch make. Grammarly and officially hun is still wrong. Hun can only be used when talking about possession.


Please have a look at the link provided by Pauline, which gives the exact following example:

Hij schonk hun een kopje koffie in. (hun = 'voor hen')


Nobody says it like that, so why not use the correct and always used form Wij koken een maaltijd voor hen?


It seems actually that Pauline is correct, and it happens as in Germany with Sie, but they've maintained its use. Wir kochen Ihnen Essen. Wir kochen Essen für Sie. Wir kochen Ihren Essen. Which solely in this last case its linked with the genitive case.


"Wir kochen Ihren* Essen" is just wrong. You are cooking ___ for their meals.


Why hun and not hen?


Because it's the indirect object of the sentence and it's not followed by a preposition.


I see you're also taking German - not sure if you've gotten as far as the dative there, but the same idea here for hen and hun in the plural is what you find in German in the masc singular den - dem. hen is accusative (what are you cooking? I'm cooking a meal. meal=direct object). Hun is dative (for whom are you cooking the meal? I'm cooking them a meal. them=indirect object).


I've been having an issue with a lot of the verbs, how can you tell when koken is cook versus when it means are cooking, it seems to be purely contextual based off the app


There is no distinction between cook and are cooking, that's why they use both forms in the translation without any pattern


it can mean both. it could be "we cook them a meal" or "we are cooking them a meal"


When you press the turtle to slow down the speaking, "hun" is definitely "zun."


Niemand uit Nederland zegt: wij koken hun een maaltijd.

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