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  5. "He is in prison."

"He is in prison."

Translation:Hij zit in de gevangenis.

September 5, 2014


[deactivated user]

    Why not "Hij is in gevangenis"? It's "prison" not "a prison" or "the prison". Is there a specific rule or is it like with "tonight" in English, thay you don't say "the tonight", but always "tonight"?


    For being incarcerated zitten is always used. This usage is so clear that sentences like: Hij/zij moet zitten usually this will mean He has to do time (since there aren't that many situations where you're mentioning that a 3rd person has to sit).

    If you're visiting a prison building, you could say: Ik ben in de gevangenis. You cannot leave out de in this kind of sentences, I'm not sure why, but to me it's similar to English I'm at the bank. The only similar sentences I can think of now, where you can leave out the article in Dutch are: op school and op kantoor.


    Interesting - there are only a few places where you can leave off "the" in English as well. "At school," "in prison/jail," "at home," "in town," and "at work" come to mind, but we always say "at the office."


    Yes, another example is "I'm in church", but some places don't require no additional word's at all, like "I'm home"


    Sorry for him :-(


    In English, "he is in prison" means that the person in question is incarcerated in an unspecified prison. He is just in jail somewhere. The use of "the" before "prison" would mean a specific jail known to the speaker and listener. Is there no such distinction in Dutch?


    Are in and op interchangeable in such situation ?


    Is there a direct translation to prison, like is it split up into real words? I find it easier to learn Dutch words when I can break it up.


    I wonder why so many sentences involve prison?.. Don't I know something about the country?


    I suspect it tells something about the USA (where Duo is from) rather than the Netherlands. In the French Duo-course, the vocabulary related to prison also comes fairly early in the course. I found it interesting: I learnt other foreign languages in the offline world, and "prison" was definitely not a common word to use and to practice.


    I put ligt and got it wrong - why isn't this acceptable?


    This would mean that he is lying in the prison. Although it is technicaly correct, gramaticaly is not common. As i understanding it, ligt is used for things that cannot stand straight witouth something holding them like banket. Also used for location like beach, city, square.. It would be something like spreads.


    Why should we use the preposition "in" instead of "op"?


    Op would suggest that he is on the prison rather than in it


    Yes but with the office we say "hij zit op het kantoor", no?


    And what about 'bij de'

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