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  5. "Wij mochten op de maan lopen…

"Wij mochten op de maan lopen."

Translation:We were allowed to walk on the moon.

December 10, 2014

33 Comments


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

The real question is, who was it that allowed us?


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

does anyone have problems with "could" and "were allowed to"? I think they're interchangeable in English...or is that just lazy English


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/iGeo85

I think "mocht/mochten" means I/we had the permission to do it, while "kon/konden" means we were able to/ had the capacity to do it. This is the difference I see.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Turtle492

I think it's the same as the difference between 'may' and 'can' in english. The problem is that there's no past tense form of 'may' in english so we end up using 'were allowed to', whereas the dutch just use mochten.


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

As I said above, the past tense of "may" is "might"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Turtle492

So you're saying that the past tense of 'I may eat the cake' (as in, I am allowed to) is 'I might eat the cake'? Going to have to disagree with you there.


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

As I said, it is a rather archaic usage. "Now I am older, I may [am allowed to] drink wine. Before, I might not [was not allowed to] drink it."


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

Isn't this past usage of "might" still used in parts of the UK?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Janet427540

No that's wrong "I might not" does not mean "was not allowed to"


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

In English, you could use "may" for the present tense or "might" for the past. I don't know whether "might" would be accepted here. It does sound a bit old-fashioned and stilted to me. However, the sentence is artificial anyway.


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

Actually “We might walk on the moon.” is not accepted.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/phb2013

I think that whereas "can" , in English, can mean both being able to do something or having permission to do something, the same doesn't hold true for the Dutch word "mochten". I understand it the way iGeo85 explains it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Joelson00

Every English teacher to whom you pose the question: 'Can I throw my book out the window?' will answer: 'You can, but you may not!'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/phb2013

What a great example to clarify the "proper" use of "can" and "may". In common usage, however, "can" seems to be replacing "may", particularly with the younger generation.


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

'could' normally implies having a permission on a regular basis while 'was/were allowed to' applies to a permission on a specific occasion


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

Dank u wel, Man in de Maan! ^^


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

Speaking of mochten, in the song 'Altijd heb ik je lief' by Closeau, part of the lyrics are "Mocht ons ooit iets overkomen. Weet dan dat ik op je wacht". Why is this grammatically correct?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/phb2013

Think of "mocht" as "should" in this sentence. "Should something ever happen to us. Know that I'll be waiting for you." Sorry, I'm not sure how to explain it grammatically.


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

In Belgium, “lopen” means “to run”, and “wandelen” to walk. Shouldn't that be accepted as in “We were allowed to run on the moon”?


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

Ups! Corrected. Thanks


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

You're welcome :)


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

Would "We were required to" be a translation of this sentence? "Must" to me seems more like "required" than "allowed."


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

Where do you see must?


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

"Mochten," past tense of "must," I thought. If the present tense is "must," the past tense in English would end up being more like "required to" than like "allowed to."


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

It's past tense of mogen, though, so "allowed to" does make sense. Past tense of moeten (must) is wij moesten, if I'm not mistaken.


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

Oh, you're right. I have a feeling I'm going to be constantly mixing these two up.


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

A few decades from now this might even be reality...


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

Translation: "We were allowed to walk on the moon."

The sentence is already reality.


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

so, what is dutch for moonwalking? maanlopen?

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