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Dutch Verb 'Zijn' (to be) - Smartphones Page

'Zijn' click to hear ('to be') is a very common Dutch verb, and like most often-used verbs it is rather irregular.
Conjugation
Sample Lines
Slang

Archaic Forms

Zijn click to hear ('to be') is a strong verb:

zijn
to be
- was
was
- geweest
been
click to hear

overview
zijn to be
ik ben I am
wij zijn we are
ik was I was
wij waren we were
ik ben geweest I have been
click to hear 2

simple present tense
zijn to be
ik ben I am
jij bent you are(singular, informal you)
hij is he is
wij zijn we are
jullie zijn you are(plural, informal you)
zij zijn they are
U bent you are(polite you)
click to hear

simple past tense
(zijn) to be
ik was I was
jij was you were
hij was he was
wij waren we were
jullie waren y'all were
zij waren they were
U was you were
click to hear

the perfect tenses
Ik ben geweest click to hear I have been
Ik was geweest click to hear 2 I had been

ik ben blij I am glad
jij bent blij you are glad(singular, informal
hij is blij he is glad
wij zijn blij we are glad
jullie zijn blij y'all are glad
zij zijn blij they are glad
click to hear

ben ik blij? am I glad?
ben jij blij? are you glad?
is hij blij? is he glad?
zijn wij blij? are we glad?
zijn jullie blij? are y'all glad?
zijn zij blij? are they glad?
click to hear

U bent blij you are glad(polite you)
bent U blij? are you glad?
click to hear
Do note that for 'zijn' 'polite you' 'U' has the same verb form as 'you singular informal 'je' - but 'U' does not drop the T when the verb comes before the subject in question mode.

The opposite is boos click to hear 'angry.'

je bent boos click to hear 2 you're angry
ben je boos? click to hear 2 are you angry?

'To Be' and Dutch 'Zijn' can mean many things like 'to occur,' 'to exist' or having a quality, a nature etc. But next to that, 'to be' and 'zijn' are auxiliary verbs with meanings that are not the same in Dutch and English.

English 'to be' is also the auxiliary verb for the Passive Voice. Dutch uses another verb: worden click to hear 2 while Dutch 'zijn' is the auxilary verb for the Perfect Tense of some verbs. It may be confusing - more.

ik ben ziek click to hear 2 3 I am sick
ik ben ziek geweest click to hear 2 3 I have been sick
ik word geschopt door Jan click to hear I am kicked by Jan

List of Verbs that Take 'Zijn'  in the Perfect Tenses

Sample Lines

ik ben ziek click to hear 2 I'm sick
ik ben niet ziek click to hear 2 3 I'm not sick
ik ben in Schiedam click to hear 2 3 I'm in Schiedam
ik was in Friesland click to hear 2 3 I was in Friesland (Frisia?)
hij is in België click to hear 2 he's in Belgium
ik ben duizelig click to hear 2 3 I'm dizzy
ik ben een Engelsman click to hear 'I'm an Englishman >>
ik ben een Amerikaan click to hear I'm [an] American
ik ben thuis click to hear I am at home
ik ben verkouden click to hear I have a cold
jij bent aan de beurt click to hear
also: jij bent click to hear
It's your turn
je bent bezweet click to hear 2 you're sweaty
The second person singular ('jij') of almost all verbs has a T-ending, but when the verb comes before the subject (like in questions) the T for the second person singular is dropped.
ben je ziek? click to hear 2 are you sick?
waar ben je? click to hear 2 where are you?
waar ben je geweest? click to hear 2 3 where have you been?
hij is ziek click to hear 2 he is sick
hij is oud click to hear he is old
zij is een zangeres click to hear she is a lady singer
het is laat click to hear it is late
't is te laat click to hear it is too late
het is niet ver click to hear 2 it's not far
't is tien uur click to hear it's 10 o'clock
't is koud click to hear it's cold
't is warm click to hear it's warm
de deur is open click to hear 2 the door is open
dit is mijn huis click to hear this is my house
dat is een goed idee click to hear that's a gpod idea
dat is interessant click to hear 2 that's interesting
het is goed genoeg click to hear it is good enough
er is genoeg brood click to hear 2 there is enough bread
wat is de prijs? click to hear what's the price?
hoe duur is 't? click to hear 2 3 how expensive is it?
hoe duur is dit? click to hear how expensive is this?
het is te duur click to hear it's too expensive
wat is uw naam? click to hear 2 what's your name?
mijn naam is Daniël click to hear 2 my name is Daniel
mijn naam is ... click to hear my name is ... ->>
zij zijn rijk click to hear 2 they are rich
zij waren rijk click to hear they were rich
zij waren te laat click to hear They were too late

Londen is ouder dan Berlijn click to hear London is older than Berlin de appels zijn groen click to hear the apples are green In 't begin was 't woord click to hear 'In the beginning was the word' (John 1:1) In 't begin was er 't woord click to hear 2 3 'In the beginning there was the word' Ben je wel eens in Denemarken geweest? click to hear Have you ever been to Denmark? Ben je ooit in Memphis geweest? click to hear Have you ever been to Memphis? Terug van weggeweest click to hear 2 3 4 Back [from having been away]

'Wassen' click to hear 2 is 'to wash' and also 'to do laundry.' So ik was click to hear can next to 'I was' also mean 'I wash' or 'I'm doing laundry' - and (de) was click to hear means 'laundry,' and actually also 'wax,' the material for candles and polishing.
ik waste click to hear 2 'I washed'
Ik was de ramen click to hear 2 I'm washing the windows de was opvouwen click to hear 2 3 folding the (washed) laundry

[laundry basket with laundry]
wasmand met was click to hear
laundry basket with laundry ->>
[me as a child 'doing laundry'  with a washboard]
wasbord click to
  hear washboard ->>

It is a bit of a stretch, but
'Ik was de hond' click to hear 2
could mean both 'I'm washing the dog' and 'I was the dog' (in a dream, game or a play)

Op zijn click to hear 2 3 4
Combined with zijn click to hear op click to hear can mean something like 'finished, gone, nothing left'
De benzine is op click to hear The gasoline is finished, we're out of gas 't Geld is op click to hear 2 3 The money is gone, there's no money left

'over zijn' click to hear 2 can mean 'to remain, be left' or '(something) left over, not finished, not gone' - or it can mean 'to be about, have as its subject'

Er zijn weinig walvissen over click to hear There are few whales left De worst is over click to hear 2 The sausage was left over, there is leftover sausage Is er wat brood over? click to hear 2 Is there some bread left? Er was niks over click to hear Nothing was left Er was helemaal niks over click to hear Absolutely nothing was left Er bleef niks van over click to hear 2 Nothing was left of it, nothing remained (also said when critics 'destroy' something)

Actually, in rare cases 'zijn over' and 'over zijn' can be ambiguous, mean both 'be left' and 'be about'
Er zijn weinig boeken over click to hear 1. There are [few] not many books about it
2. There are [few] not many books left

bang click to hear afraid
bang zijn click to hear 2 to be afraid
bang maken click to hear 2 ['to make afraid, create anxiety'] - to scare, frighten

"Ik ben bang dat ..." click to hear isn't scary but used to apologize or say things you're not happy about
Ik ben bang dat de avocado's nog niet rijp zijn click to hear 2 I'm afraid the avocados are not ripe yet Ik ben bang dat het nog niet klaar is click to hear I'm afraid it's not ready yet

Je hoeft niet bang te zijn click to hear 2 3 [You don't need to be afraid] - Don't be afraid, don't worry, there's no reason to be afraid Hij is bang in het donker click to hear 2 He's afraid in (of?) the dark Ze is bang voor spinnen click to hear 2 She's afraid of spiders Daar was ik al bang voor click to hear 2 'I was already afraid of that' - a not uexpected disappointment Hij is nergens bang voor click to hear 2 3 [He's afraid of nothing] - He's not afraid of anything ‑>> Er is niks waar hij bang voor is click to hear 2 3 [There is nothing that he's afraid of] - He's not afraid of anything Ze willen ons bang maken click to hear 2 3 They want to make us afraid, they're trying to scare us

'af zijn' click to hear 2 to be ready, finished, done Is 't af? click to hear 2 3 4 Is it finished? Is it ready? Are you done with it? Mijn werk is nooit af click to hear 2 3 4 My work is never done, never finished

af zijn click to hear van click to hear 2 to be rid of, done with ergens vanaf zijn click to hear 2 3 be done with something, be rid of something, no longer bothered by something ‑>> Om van 't gezeur af te zijn click to hear 2 To put an end to, to be done with the nagging, to get rid of the hassle, the pointless, annoying comments Dan zijn we van de problemen af click to hear 2 3 4 5 slow Then we'll be done with the problems (that will solve the problems, then the problems will be solved) Als ik ergens vanaf zou willen zijn zijn het die migraines click to hear 2 3 4 If there is [something] one thing I'd like to be rid of it's those migraines
- it's a bit formal.

More colloquial is: Als ik ergens vanaf zou willen zijn het die migraines click to hear 2 3 If there is [something] one thing I'd like to be rid of it's those migraines See also:  afwillen van click to hear 2 wanting to be rid of ‑>>

Slang

A fairly common slang (or 'old') form of the imperative ('command mode') of 'to be' is 'wees' click to hear 2 - for instance:
Wees aardig voor dieren click to hear 2 'Be kind to animals' Wees aardig voor de dieren click to hear 'Be kind to the animals' Wees blij dat ... click to hear 2 3 4 Be glad that ... The first line of the Dutch 'Hail Mary:'
Wees gegroet, Maria click to hear 2 'Be greeted, Maria' ->> Wees verdacht op ... click to hear 2 3 Expect, watch out for, be prepared for ... Wees verdacht op windstoten click to hear Expect, watch out for, be prepared for sudden gusts of wind Wees voorzichtig! click to hear 2 'Be careful!' The proper phrase is:
Ben voorzichtig! click to hear 2 'Be careful!'

A not unusual slang variation of 'zijn' is wezen click to hear 2
't Zal je kind maar wezen click to
 hear 'Be careful!''Imagine it would be your child,' 'To have a child like that ...' 't Zal me worst wezen click to hear 2 'Be careful!'['It will be sausage to me'] - expression meaning 'I don't care at all'

The adjective aanwezig click to hear present, "here!" is probably from the same root

(De) wees click to hear 2 and wezen click to hear 2 are the singular and plural for 'orphan' and (het) wezen click to hear 2 may also mean 'the essence.' 'Wees/wezen' is also the past tense of the strong verb 'wijzen' click to hear 2 (to point) wijzen/wees/gewezen click to hear

A less common slang variation is 'benne' click to hear 2 for 'zijn'
"We benne op de wereld om mekaar te hellepe niewaar?" click to hear 2 We are in this world to help each other out, isn't it? - or in the Piet Hein song:
Zijn daden benne groot click to hear 'His actions are great'

Archaic Forms

When I learned the standard prayers in the late fifties they still had some archaic forms of 'zijn:'

- from The Lord's Prayer:
Onze Vader die in de hemel zijt ... click to hear 2 Our Father which art in heaven ...

- from the Hail Mary:
... Gij zijt de gezegende onder de vrouwen ... click to hear 2 ... Thou art the blessed one among the women ...

Matthew 5:37 (also in James 5:12) - condemning the swearing of oaths:
Maar Uw woord ja zij ja, neen, neen click to hear 2 3 But let your 'Yes' be 'Yes' and your 'No,' 'No'
(Let what you say be simply 'Yes' or 'No')
wat daar bijkomt is uit den boze click to hear 2
anything more than this comes from evil

... en er zij licht! click to hear 2 ... and let there be light! (Genesis 1:3)

Godzijdank click to hear 2 3 [God deserves thanks, the Lord be thanked] - 'fortunately'

And there is the phrase
Als het ware click to hear 2 'As it were' - 'as if it was'

the perfect tense - Hebben - 'to have' >>

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Gij zult niet stelen click to hear 'Thou shalt not steal'