1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Dutch
  4. >
  5. "Ook de koning heeft soms beh…

"Ook de koning heeft soms behoefte aan een biertje."

Translation:Even the king sometimes needs a beer.

January 10, 2015



Is there a significant difference in using heeft ... behoefte rather than heeft ... nodig here?


Asked my Dutch friend:

First one is more classy/formal, second one is more common, but might also come over as more "needy". Heeft ... behoefte is more like " i would like to", heeft ... nodig more like "i need/want" (more needy due to bluntness)

I took French during high school, and hearing this reminded me of the difference between "Je voudrais" (I would like) and "Je veux" (I want)


Thank you, that's very helpful!


How’d you do that pushed forward text? :O


Two asterisks on either side makes it bold, and one asterisk on either side makes it italic :)


That’s… not at all what I asked.


I was only trying to decipher what you meant by "pushed forward text"... I thought you simply didn't know the term for bolded text, but I now realise that you were referring to the indentation! Indentation is done by typing ">" before a new line of text.

See? There you go :)


Indentation. Thanks!


"behoefte" is more like a "need" that you don't actually need, e.g. the 'needs' in a relationship which really indicates the things you wish to get out of a relstionship, or 'I really need a beer' is used to mean "I have a strong desire for a beer", in those cases you'd use 'behoefte'. An interesting exception might be "je(/jouw)/m'n(/mijn)/z'n(/zijn)/d'r(/haar) behoefte doen" which means "you/me/him/her taking a shit"

"Nodig" is more used for things you actually need, "ik heb water nodig" ("I need water" "ze heeft nog bloem nodig voor het recept" ("she still needs flower for the recipe" although it is still sometimes used in places where you dont really need it, but then it often is paired with "even" (so "even nodig") E.g. "Een pilsje, dat had ik echt even nodig" ("A pilsner, I really needed that right now" "Even" sort of means 'for a moment' (although it also means 'even' as in 'even or odd') but I find it difficult to give a direct translation, and it's more used as a figure of speech in this case.


This is funny because the Dutch king, Willem-Alexander, used to be known as Prince Pils, due to his love of drinking and partying!


I've submitted 'even the king sometimes has need of a beer' as a correction.


I also said in need OF a beer and had it marked wrong. It is still IN NEED OF updating at least in the uk


What is aan doing here? Is it part of a separable verb?


Is hebben behoefte aan a set phrase?


Yes. Je hebt behoefte aan "iets". You want "something". I usually think of it as "I long for something."


I used the word "too" as a translation for "ook". As in "The king too has a need". It was marked as wrong. Mmm.

[deactivated user]

    Even the king.....Zelfs de koning.........


    In British pubs (at least the ones I have been in in East Anglia) a half-pint of beer is referred to as a "small beer", but if you translate "biertje" as "small beer" it gets marked wrong. A half-pint is 284 ml. How big is a Dutch biertje?


    200 ml for a "fluitje" (little flute) or 250ml for a "Amsterdammertje" (little one from Amsterdam) or "vaasje" (little vase). You may call that 'small'.


    Thank you , fephen.


    The diminuitive is primarily used as a term of endearment here, not as indication of small size. The biertje could be half a liter..


    Like pieter says, its used to make it sound nicer. Anything with tje sounds cuter/nicer/friendlier than just saying it as is.


    Can I say "Zelfs de koning heeft..."? Do they mean the same?


    I'd translate "Even the king..." as "Zelfs de koning...". My guess is that the Dutch sentence was the source, and then "Ook de koning..." might be idiomatically translated as "Even the king...", which also mostly conserves the original word order. I'd probably go for the more literal translation of "The king ..., too" or something with 'also' or 'as well'. To me, 'even'/'zelfs' implies some sort of extra-special-ness to the occasion that 'also'/'ook' does not.


    "even the king needs sometimes a beer" marked incorrect, i feel it should be accepted, but i am not native..


    It shouldn't, I'm afraid. Putting the adverb after the verb is a very marked usage. People would have no issue understanding it, but it would mark the speaker or writer out as a non-native speaker. If you placed it before the verb or at the end of the sentence, it would be much more idiomatic.


    How come "Ook" is used here instead of "Zelfs" ?

    Learn Dutch in just 5 minutes a day. For free.