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  5. "Ik herinner me zijn naam nieā€¦

"Ik herinner me zijn naam niet."

Translation:I do not remember his name.

December 3, 2014



Is "me" necessary in this sentence or just useful as an example of a reflexive?


It is necessary. The person you speak to might not notice it if you leave 'me' out, and he will get what you mean anyway, but it doesn't make sense without 'me'.


Could you also use "mij"? When?


Yes you could. We wouldn't, but you could. Always.


But what role does "me" play in this sentence? It seems to neither the subject nor the object. Is it part of the verb "herinner"?


Yes, the verb here is "zich herinneren" (not just "herinneren"). "Zich herinneren" is an examp[le of what is known as a reflexive verb. There are quite a few of them in Dutch, and as an English speaker you probably just have to memorize them.

The verb "zich herinneren" is a ditransitive verb. That is, it takes two direct objects: the reflexive pronoun plus whatever it is that is being remembered.

Note that "zich" is the reflexive pronoun used in the third person singular and third person plural. In the first person singular, the reflexive pronoun is "me". That is what Duo is using here.

Note that the reflexive pronoun always "reflects" the subject of the sentence:
ik -> me
jij -> je
hij/zij -> zich
wij -> ons
jullie -> je
zij -> zich


why is niet at the end of the sentence ?


Why is not 'I myself don't remember his name'? (as it one is stressing that they can't do it).


Because duo's sentence does not imply that there's anything being stressed i guess. Although you can stress the word 'ik' duo would've given a sentence like "Ikzelf herinner me zijn naam niet" "Zelf herinner ik me zijn naam niet"


A, so if you want to stress something you use 'zelf' forms?


You can stress personal pronouns by adding zelf, yes.


What about "ik herineer me niet zijn naam."?


No. In Dutch a negative follows a definite direct object (such as "zij naam" here). Another example:

Ik herinner me zijn naam nooit.

On the other hand, the negative precedes an indefinite direct object:

Ik herinner me nooit iets.


How would you say "I do not remember her name"?


Ik herinner me haar naam niet.


How would you say "I remember" or "I don't remember"? Do you still need the reflexive pronoun in those cases?


I remember = Ik herinner me
I do not remember = Ik herinner me niet


Is the "me" part only part of this sentence because the verb is zich herinneren? Are all the verbs in this lesson "zich ___" ?

I am trying to make some sense of when to use these reflexives or see a pattern. They are more looking to be memorization.


This is exactly What I wrote and you say it's wrong...


Next time report it using the green button that is present with the sentence and select "my answer should have been accepted". At this moment I cannot tell what your answer was and if there are possible issues.


"Ik herinner me niet zijn naam" is also correct?


You could say "Ik herinner me niet hoe hij heet" but that would be a whole other sentence.


Ok, but why are some sentences more flexible with the placement of "niet" and others aren't?


That really depends on the sentence. 'Niet' often slightly changes the meaning of a sentence.

"Ik loop niet elke dag naar de Albert Heijn (supermarket)" This means that you sometimes go to Albert Heijn, but not everyday. "Ik loop elke dag niet naar de Albert Heijn" Now this sentence would be incorrect, though if you add a contradistinction it is: "Ik loop elke dag niet naar de Albert Heijn, maar naar de Jumbo.

"Ik kan me elke dag zijn naam niet herinneren" This means that everyday you can't remember his name. "Ik kan me niet elke dag zijn naam herinneren" Now this means, that it is not everyday that you can remember his name. Some days you can, some days you can't.


What's the purpose of "me" in this sentence?

subject: "ik"

verb: "herinner"

object: "zijn naam"


See my earlier posts on this page.

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