Verb Order

According to many, the word order is one of the hardest parts of the Dutch language. If you are also struggling with subordinate clauses, inversion and the like, this is the place to be.
Post Reply
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Apr 18, 2014 7:37 pm
Country of residence: United States
Mother tongue: English
Second language: German
Third language: Italian
Fourth language: Spanish
Fifth, sixth, seventh, ..., languages: French, Chinese, Dutch
Gender: Female

Verb Order

Post by KaitJohnson » Fri Apr 18, 2014 7:46 pm

I've only been learning Dutch for three days now, but since I know German, that vocabulary has been pretty simple so far. However, I was wondering specifically about verb order.

In general, are verb order rules closer to English order or German order?

Are there any conjunctions that change the order of verbs? (Like German 'dass', where the verb comes at the end instead)

With modal verbs (can, want, must, etc...), does the second verb come right after? And is it left in the infinitive or stem? (Ik kan leren/leer)

Thanks! :D

User avatar
Retired moderator
Posts: 1974
Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2006 8:14 pm
Country of residence: Netherlands
Mother tongue: Dutch (Netherlands)
Second language: English
Third language: German
Fourth language: French
Fifth, sixth, seventh, ..., languages: Russisch (in progress...)
Gender: Female

Re: Verb Order

Post by Joke » Fri Apr 18, 2014 8:30 pm

Verb order in Dutch is much more like German than like English.

In a main sentence, there is always a verb at the second place and all other verbs are at the end of the sentence. There is always only one conjugated verb. The other verbs are either infinitives or participles.
Ik wil Nederlands leren.
Ik heb Nederlands geleerd.

In subclauses (after words like omdat, als, dat) al verbs are at the end of the clause.
Nederlands is makkelijk, omdat ik al Duits heb geleerd.

Succes met Nederlands leren!


Post Reply