"I do not know if he is home."

Translation:Ik weet niet of hij thuis is.

September 3, 2014

16 Comments


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

Why is this 'of' and not 'als' for if? Is "Ik weet niet als hij thuis is" wrong? Thanks

September 3, 2014

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

That's because in this case "if" has the sense of "whether". Thus we use "of" instead of "als".

September 3, 2014

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

But I would say that "I don't know if he is home" and "I don't know whether he is home" were equivalent in English, I would use them interchangeably. I still don't get the distinction here.

September 3, 2014

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

The English word "if" is used in two different ways. Firstly, it can be used to mean "whether", like in this sentence. You are right, "if" and "whether" are completely interchangeable here. That is when Dutch uses the word "of".

Secondly, it can be found at the start of conditional subclauses. You could replace it with "provided that" or "in the case that" or sometimes just with "when", but not with "whether". In that case, Dutch uses "als". For example:

  • If it rains, I do not go outside. - Als het regent, ga ik niet naar buiten.
  • I go if you are going too. - Ik ga als jij ook gaat.
September 3, 2014

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

ahh ok, I think I'm begining to see now - thanks for the help.

September 4, 2014

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

can't you say "zit" for "is"?

December 26, 2014

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

Or "staat"?

March 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/anu1217

Why is "Ik ken niet of hij thuis is" wrong?

June 28, 2015

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

weten is about facts, you know whether he is home or not. Kennen refers more to be acquainted with someone

July 8, 2015

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

Asked before but still not answered: can't we use "zit" instead of "is"?

December 23, 2015

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

I believe you could use both, yet 'zit' doesn't get used as much as 'is', since it is a bit less polite to use.

July 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sean-may

I put "niet" before "weet" and it marked it as wrong. Why??

April 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/El2theK

Because you cannot place niet between the subject and verb in a main clause.

April 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sean-may

okay, thanks

April 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ashley331478

Why is it "hij thuis is" instead of "hij is thuis"?

July 10, 2017

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

'Is' is the second verb in the sentence, so goes at the end

July 11, 2017
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