Dutch Verbs

If you're trying to learn Dutch Verbs which is also called Nederlands, check our courses about Verbs in the present past and future tense... to help you with your Dutch grammar. Try to concentrate on the lesson and notice the pattern that occurs each time the word changes its place. Also don't forget to check the rest of our other lessons listed on Learn Dutch. Enjoy the rest of the lesson!


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Dutch Verbs

Learning the Dutch Verbs is very important because its structure is used in every day conversation. The more you master it the more you get closer to mastering the Dutch language. But first we need to know what the role of Verbs is in the structure of the grammar in Dutch.

Dutch verbs are words that convey action (bring, read, walk, run), or a state of being (exist, stand). In most languages a verb may agree with the person, gender, and/or number of some of its arguments, such as its subject, or object.

Grammar Tips:

-       Present Tense

In Dutch, verbs take the following endings to form the present tense:

 

Infinitive                                                                                   lopen (to run)

Ik                                 – stem                                                 loop                                        

Jij                                 – stem –t                                             loopt

Hij/Zij/Het                    – stem –t                                             loopt

Wij                               – stem –en   [= the infinitive]               lopen

Jullie                            – stem –en   [= the infinitive]               lopen

Zij                                – stem –en   [= the infinitive]               lopen

 

Note that a double “oo” in a single syllable word, is reduced to a single “o” when a suffix is added. For example : ik loop à wij lopen

The same goes for “aa”, “ee” and “uu”.

This applies for both nouns, adjectives, verbs, …

 

Like in English, these simple endings can help you a lot, because with them you can conjugate all verbs into the present tense, you only need the stem of the verb, for example the stem of (lopen: to run) is loop.

Another example: zingen (to sing) – the stem is : zing

 

Like in most languages hebben (to have) and zijn (to be) are irregular. Memorize them !

 

ik heb                                      ik ben

jij hebt                                      hij bent

hij/zij/het heeft                         hij/zij/het is

wij hebben                               wij zijn

jullie hebben                            jullie zijn

zij hebben                                zij zijn

 

 

-       Past Tense

In Dutch as well as in English the simple past tense (imperfect) is used to describe past events. For most verbs the endings for the past tense are:

For the singular –te

For the plural –ten

 

For example :

werken (to work)                     ik werkte (I worked)                wij werkten (we worked)

uiten (to express)                    ik uitte (I expressed)               wij uitten (we expressed)

 

 

Some verbs get  -de / -den

 

For example :

Plannen (to plan)                     ik plande (I planned)               wij planden (we planned)

 

 

Some verbs get a different vowel in the stem.

 

For example :

lopen (to run)                           ik liep (I ran)                            wij liepen (we ran)

sterven (to die)                        ik stierf (I died)                        wij stierven (we died)

liegen (to lie)                            ik loog (I lied)                           wij logen (we lied)

worden (to become)               ik werd (I became)                  wij werden (we became)

rijden (to drive)                        ik reed (I drove)                      wij reden (we drove)

 

You’ll have to memorize these irregular verbs.

 

 

-       Future Tense

To form the future in Dutch it’s very easy, just use infinitive verb preceded by

zal for singular

zullen for plural

 

ik zal lopen (I’ll run)

jij zal lopen (you’ll run)

hij zal lopen (he’ll run)

wij zullen lopen (we’ll run)

jullie zullen lopen (you’ll run – plural)

zij zullen lopen (they’ll run)


Here are some examples:

English VerbsDutch Verbs
VerbsWerkwoorden
Pastverleden tijd
I spokeik sprak
I wroteik schreef
I droveik reed
I lovedik hield van
I gaveik gaf
I smiledik glimlachte
I tookik nam
he spokehij sprak
he wrotehij schreef
he drovehij reed
he lovedhij hield van
he gavehij gaf
he smiledhij glimlachte
he tookhij nam
we spokewe spraken
we wrotewe schreven
we drovewe reden
we lovedwe hielden van
we gavewe gaven
we smiledwe glimlachten
we tookwe namen
Futuretoekomende tijd
I will speakik zal spreken
I will writeik zal schrijven
I will driveik zal rijden
I will loveik zal houden van
I will giveik zal geven
I will smileik zal glimlachen
I will takeik zal nemen
he will speakhij zal spreken
he will writehij zal schrijven
he will drivehij zal rijden
he will lovehij zal houden van
he will givehij zal geven
he will smilehij zal glimlachen
he will takehij zal nemen
we will speakwe zullen spreken
we will writewe zullen schrijven
we will drivewe zullen rijden
we will lovewe zullen houden van
we will givewe zullen geven
we will smilewe zullen glimlachen
we will takewe zullen nemen
PresentTegenwoordige tijd
I speakik spreek
I writeik schrijf
I driveik rijd
I loveik houd van
I giveik geef
I smileik glimlach
I takeik neem
he speakshij spreekt
he writeshij schrijft
he driveshij rijdt
he loveshij houdt van
he giveshij geeft
he smileshij glimlacht
he takeshij neemt
we speakwe spreken
we writewe schrijven
we drivewe rijden
we lovewe houden van
we givewe geven
we smilewe glimlachen
we takewe nemen

In Dutch verbs are divided in strong and weak verbs. A weak verb changes internally like lopen --> liepen to walk, schrijven schreven to write. Striong vebs however do not change internally but get de suffix –te or –de at the end, like spelen, speelden to play, wassen wasten to wash.

Now the past participles end in d or t depending on the past tense of the verb. For example waken (to wake)- waak -waakte -gewaakt. K is in ‘’t kofschip and so the past participle ends on a t. But schrobben (to scrub), schrob -schrobde -geschrobd, since b is not in the ‘’t kofschip. In looking at the last letter of the stem, that is the verb mines –en one should look at the consonant before it is made voiceless, like in leven – en is lev which will become leev since a long vowel in a closed syllable should be written twice, no v is changed to f making leef, no f is in the ‘’t kofschip so one would expect to have to write geleeft, but you have to look at v which is not in the ‘’t kofschip so you have to write geleefd! (note: in schrobben, subtracting en will give schrobb, but unlike in German, we never write double consonants at the end so it becomes schrob pronounced schrop).

Some verbs end on a d or a t, like the verb heten to be called, the past tense is formed by subtracting –en to get the stem, heet and then put te after it so as to get heette. The verb luiden in the second en third person will get a t at the end making jij, hij luidt. These rules are very bewildering even for the Dutch. I always have to check if I have made no mistakes in these areas. Also since the Dutch keep changing the rules of spelling, that makes Dutch a difficult language for foreigners to learn, it is for that reason the Dutch is called the Chinese of the west (Although I think Chinese is a lot easier).

Notice the structure of the Verbs in Dutch.

List of Verbs in Dutch

Below is a list of the conjugated Verbs in the present past and future in Dutch placed in a table. Memorizing this table will help you add very useful and important words to your Dutch vocabulary.

English VerbsDutch Verbs
I can accept thatIk kan aanvaarden dat
she added itze voegde het eraan toe
we admit itwe geven het toe
they advised himze adviseerden hem
I can agree with thatik kan daarmee instemmen
she allows itze laat het toe
we announce itwe kondigen het aan
I can apologizeik kan mijn excuses aanbieden
she appears todayZe verschijnt vandaag
they arranged thatze spraken af dat
I can arrive tomorrowik kan morgen aankomen
she can ask himze kan hem vragen
she attaches thatze hecht het vast
we attack themwe vallen ze aan
they avoid herze vermijden haar
I can bake itik kan het bakken
she is like himze lijkt op hem
we beat itwe slaan het/we hebben het verslagen
they became happyze werden gelukkig
I can begin thatik kan daarmee beginnen
we borrowed moneyWe leenden geld
they breathe airze ademen lucht
I can bring itik kan het brengen
I can build thatik kan dat bouwen
she buys foodze koopt eten
we calculate itwe berekenen het
they carry itze dragen het
they don't cheatze spelen niet vals
she chooses himze kiest hem/ze kiest voor hem
we close itwe sluiten het
he comes hereHij komt hier
I can compare thatIk kan dat vergelijken
she competes with meZe concurreert met mij
we complain about itwe klagen erover
they continued readingze bleven lezen
he cried about thathij huilde erover
I can decide nowIk kan nu beslissen
she described it to meZe beschreef het aan mij
we disagree about itwe zijn het er niet over eens
they disappeared quicklyze verdwenen snel
I discovered thatIk ontdekte dat
she dislikes thatze houdt daar niet van
we do itwe doen het
they dream about itze dromen erover
I earnedik verdiende
he eats a lothij eet veel
we enjoyed thatwe hebben ervan genoten
they entered hereze zijn hier binnengekomen
he escaped thathij is eraan ontsnapt
I can explain thatDat kan ik uitleggen
she feels that tooze voelt dat ook
we fled from thereWe zijn daar vandaan gevlucht
they will fly tomorrowzij vliegen morgen
I can follow youIk kan u volgen
she forgot meze vergat mij
we forgive himwe vergeven hem
I can give her thatik kan haar dat geven
she goes thereze gaat daar naartoe
we greeted themwe begroetten hen
I hate thatIk haat dat
I can hear itik kan het horen
she imagine thatze stelt zich voor dat
we invited themwe nodigden hen uit
I know himIk ken hem
she learned itze heeft het geleerd
we leave nowwe gaan nu weg
they lied about himze hebben over hem gelogen
I can listen to thatik kan daar naar luisteren
she lost thatze is dat verloren
we made it yesterdaywe hebben het gisteren gemaakt
they met himze hebben hem ontmoet
I misspell thatik spel dat fout
I always prayik bid altijd
she prefers thatze geeft daar de voorkeur aan
we protected themwe beschermden hen
they will punish herze zullen haar straffen
I can put it thereik kan het daar neerzetten
she will read itze zal het lezen
we received thatwe ontvingen dat
they refuse to talkzij weigeren te praten
I remember thatIk herinner me dat
she repeats thatze herhaalt dat
we see itWe zien het
they sell itze verkopen het
I sent that yesterdayik heb dat gisteren gestuurd
he shaved his beardhij heeft zijn baard geschoren
it shrunk quicklyhet kromp snel
we will sing itwe zullen het zingen
they sat therezij zaten daar
I can speak itik kan dat spreken
she spends moneyZe besteedt geld
we suffered from thatwe leden daaronder
they suggest thatze suggereren dat
I surprised himIk verraste hem
she took thatze nam dat
we teach itwe onderwijzen het
they told usZe vertelden ons
she thanked himze bedankte hem
I can think about itik kan erover nadenken
she threw itZe gooide het
we understand thatWij begrijpen dat
they want thatze willen dat
I can wear itIk kan het dragen
she writes thatZij schrijft dat
we talk about itWe praten erover
they have itze hebben het
I watched itik heb het gekeken
I will talk about itIk zal erover praten
he bought that yesterdayhij heeft dat gisteren gekocht
we finished itwe hebben het afgemaakt

Verbs in the present past and future tense have a very important role in Dutch. Once you're done with the Nederlands Verbs, you might want to check the rest of our Dutch lessons here: Learn Dutch. Don't forget to bookmark this page.


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