Dutch/Lesson 20


Beginner level    Intermediate level    Advanced level
Cycle 1 Cycle 2 Cycle 3 Cycle 4 Cycle 5 Cycle 6
Main Lesson 1 Lesson 2 Lesson 3 Lesson 4 Lesson 5 Lesson 6 Lesson 7 Lesson 8 Lesson 9 Lesson 10 Lesson 11 Lesson 12 Lesson 13 Lesson 14 Lesson 15 Lesson 16 Lesson 17 Lesson 18 Lesson 19 Lesson 20 Lesson 21 Lesson 22 Lesson 23 Main
Practice Lesson 1A Lesson 2A Lesson 3A Lesson 4A Lesson 5A Lesson 6A Lesson 7A Lesson 8A Lesson 9A Lesson 10A Lesson 11A Lesson 12A Lesson 13A Lesson 14A Lesson 15A Lesson 16A Practice
Examples Vb. 1 Vb. 2 Vb. 3 Vb. 4 Vb. 5 Vb. 6 Vb. 7 Vb. 8 Vb. 9 Vb. 10 Vb. 11 Vb. 12 Vb. 13 Vb. 14 Vb. 15 Vb. 16 Examples
Quiz Quiz
Main page Introduction Pronunciation Vocabulary Index News

Advanced level: cycle 5

Lesson 20 ~ Lesson 20

Uitroepen! ~ Exclamations! |}

Grammar: Exclamative pronoun

ExclamationsEdit

As in most languages Dutch exclamations are often idiomatic rather than grammatical and are best learned one by one. Often exclamations are not even complete sentences. The intonation is very similar to the English one: there is a very strong emphasis on the most important syllable in the utterance.

Exclamative pronounEdit

The pronoun "wat" can be used to start een exclamation, e.g. with an adjective:

Wat prachtig! - How beautiful!
Wat zonde! - What a pity! ("Wat Jammer" can also be used)

As in English it can be combined with an indefinite article:

Wat een prachtig gedicht! - What a beautiful poem!

Inversion for emphasisEdit

As we have seen one reason for inversion is to emphasize a certain word. Similarly it can be used to create an exclamation out of a sentence. Often the personal pronoun "me" is added as an indirect object to emphasize that the sentence portrays something the speaker is strongly affected by:

Dat was een teleurstelling - That was a disappointment
  Was me dát een teleurstelling! - Wow, that was quite a disappointment!
Dat is een verrassing - That is a surprise
  Is me dat een verrassing! - What a surprise that is!

Such constructions can also occur with the infinitive used as a noun, e.g. schrikken - being shocked

Dit is schrikken - This is a shock
  Is me dat schrikken! - What a scary experience! What a shock!

InterjectionsEdit

There is a vocative particle "O!" as in English. It can be used with people's names, but it is not used much. It indicates a strong emotion, e.g. after terrible news:

Jan heeft kanker - John has cancer
O, Jan! O, wat verschrikkelijk! - O, John, o how awful

A different particle is usually written as "oh" and pronounced [ɔ] rather than [o]. It expressed indignation or admiration:

Oh, mam, dat mag Bartje toch niet - Aw, mom, Bartje is not allowed to do that, is he?
Oh, wat een mooi vuurwerk! - Ooh, what a beautiful fireworks!

Surprise is sometimes uttered with "tjonge"

Tjonge! Wat een verrassing - Wow! What a surprise!