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Different ways to say "because

Posted: Thu Apr 03, 2014 2:14 pm
by vaninagmartinez
Hello, I'm studying for the basisexam inburgering in het buitenland.
I noticed that I always say "omdat" but I realized that there are other words like misschien door, opdat etc and since my level in the language is not advanced and my dictionary is for dutch users it is hard for me to understand what is the difference and when shall I use each one.

Thank you very much!

Vanina G. Martínez

Re: Different ways to say "because

Posted: Thu Apr 03, 2014 3:23 pm
by ngonyama
The most direct translation of because is "omdat". There are some alternatives, but they have (slightly) different meaning.

The closest one is "want". It gives more of a further explanation than a reason(ing by a person)/cause.

Hij komt niet omdat hij besloten heeft thuis te blijven
Hij komt niet want hij is op vakantie

Notice that "want" is not subordinating; the word order remains unaltered.

"Doordat" comes very close to omdat, but gives more of a circumstance than a personal choice/will

Doordat het even gevroren heeft, zijn er gladde plekken op het wegdek.

The two are used almost interchangeably nowadays, though. See:

There is another one "daar" that also gives a reason, but it is pretty formal and not used much in spoken language.
Daar het gebied weinig regen krijgt, is de waterhuishouding geen eenvoudige zaak - As the region receives little rain, water management is not a simple matter.

"Door" can be used as conjunction followed by te+infinitive ("beknopte bijzin") but it specifies a means by which, not a cause

Door dit te lezen zal het hopelijk wat duidelijker worden. - By reading this it will hopefully all become a bit clearer

"Opdat" expresses a desired result, not a cause.
Ik schrijf dit opdat je het beter begrijpt - I am writing this in the hope that you will understand it better.
"Opdat" is rather formal language and is not used a lot in spoken Dutch.

Re: Different ways to say "because

Posted: Tue Apr 08, 2014 2:28 pm
by vaninagmartinez
Wow, your answer was so clear to me!!
Finally I've got to understand this!! Everytime I was trying to say "because" there was somebody correcting me so I as already getting bored of not learning at all, LOL
Thank you very much for replying so soon as well!


Vanina G. Martínez