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Lesson Transcript

Hallo allemaal! Ik heet Gabriella. Hi everybody! I’m Gabriella.
Welcome to DutchPod101.com’s “Nederlands in 3 minuten”. The fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn Dutch.
In the last lesson, we learned how to ask "Who" questions in Dutch.
In this final lesson of the series, we are going to ask "Why" questions.
Imagine your boss is giving you a call because you are not at work today... He will certainly ask you Waarom ben je niet op werk vandaag? “Why are you not at work today?”
[slowly] Waarom ben je niet op werk vandaag?
Let’s break down this question.
First we had-
Waarom, which is the Dutch word for "Why".
ben is the present tense of the verb zijn, when you’re asking a question.
je is the word for “you”.
Then comes Niet, which is "not”.
Then op werk means “at work”
And finally vandaag which is "today"
Altogether, it is Waarom ben je niet op werk vandaag?
So in Dutch, waarom is the exact translation of "Why", and it’s used to ask the reason for something.
So for example, if your boss is asking you "Why are you late today?" he will say Waarom ben je laat vandaag?
Here, he uses "Why" in order to get explanations and reasons.
Let’s look at some other uses for waarom.
If someone says something you don’t agree with, you can tell them Waarom denk je dat? “Why do you think that?”
[slowly] Waarom denk je dat?
Or if you are concerned about the train being late you can ask someone, Waarom is de trein laat? “Why is the train late?”
[slowly] Waarom is de trein laat?
It sometimes happens in the Netherlands!
The answer to these questions is simply...
Ik weet niet waarom. “I don’t know why.”
[slowly] Ik weet niet waarom.
Now it’s time for Gabriella’s Insights.
A famous expression in the Netherlands is Waarom niet? which means, as in English, "Why not?"
You can use it to accept a suggestion if you're not particularily excited about it. Or, if it was not planned in advance.
For example, if a friend suddenly asks you "Do you want to go see a movie tonight?"
You can answer Waarom niet? "Why not?"
This lesson is the last of this Absolute Beginner video series.
But it’s hopefully not the last you’ll learn about the Dutch language! To take your language ability to the next level, check out DutchPod101.com, the fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn Dutch.
Tot ziens!