LearnDanishwith Us!Start Learning!
Ikke (not) phrases are often called negative phrases – even if some of them have a very positive meaning: Vi vil ikke have mere vold! (We don’t want any more violence!) Sometimes, though, even the most positive negative sentence can drive a poor language-learner mad: Where do(n’t) I put ikke?
Let’s take some simple summer phrases…
…and put them in denial:
So, basically, you just put ikke behind the main verb.
But how about questions? That’s where it’s getting – interesting:
See? The main verb jumps up front, while ikke politely stays in the line…
Fortunately, most Danes will understand you even if you place ikke a little off. Otherwise, I think that Dependent Clauses would make students run away screaming! 🙂 (There are 2 DC’s in the phrase I think THAT she told me WHEN she would get back.) Behold the marvel:
In case you wonder, the flipflop (virker ikke > ikke virker etc.) has a lot to do with inversion – a strange twist in Danish grammar – but that’s for another blog post!
Now, place ikke the right place in these three sentences:
Vi __ mangler __ gode ideer. (We don’t lack good ideas.)
__ mangler __ vi __ gode ideer?
Jeg ved at __ vi __ mangler __ gode ideer.
Yes, that’s right! 🙂 Not bad (ikke dårligt)!