Netherlandic language

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Netherlandic, also called Dutch (from Netherlandic 'duits', which in modern Netherlandic means 'German', but formerly was used for Low German and its related languages to distinguish them from French), is a West Germanic language most closely related to Low German on the one hand and Frisian and English on the other hand. Dutch did not participate in the second (High German) sound shifting - compare German machen /-x-/ Dutch maken, English make, German Pfanne /pf-/, Dutch pan, English pan, German zwei /ts-/, Dutch twee, English two.

In early times, the Dutch language as such did not exist, instead there were various Low German dialects spoken in the region. Around 1600, a unified language was created from these to make the first Dutch bible translation, consisting of elements from various dialects, but mostly based on the dialects from Holland, and this point can be taken as the starting point of Dutch as a language. Dutch is spoken in the Netherlands, the northern half of Belgium (called Flanders), the north-western corner of France, Suriname in South-America, and in Indonesia, the latter two both former Dutch colonies. In Suriname it is still the main language for official functions and in education. Flemish is the collective term used for the Dutch dialects spoken in Belgium; it is not a separate language. Afrikaans, a language spoken in South Africa, is derived from Dutch. The standard language spoken in both the Netherlands and Flemish Belgium is called Algemeen Nederlands. Of all major languages, Dutch is the one that is closest to English, however, the less-known Frisian language is even closer to English (although still much closer to Dutch).

Dutch has more French loanwords than German, but fewer than English.


The Phonemes of the Dutch language:

Plosives

/p, b/

/t, d/

/k/ [g] [g]is not a phoneme of Dutch and appears only in foreign words

Fricatives

/f, v/ /v/ fell together with /f/ for many speakers

/s, z/ /z/ fell together with /s/ for many speakers

/x, G/ /G/ fell together with /x/ for many speakers

/h/

/S, Z/ /Z/ only in foreign words. Some scholars interpret /S/ [s_j] as an allophone of /s/ + /j/

Semi-vowels

/j/

/w/ (actually, /w/ is most often released as an approximant)

Liquida

/l/

/r/

/m/

/n/

/N/

Vowels


Back vowels

/A/ /Y/ /O/

Mid (central) vowels

/@/ Schwa: e in kunnen /kYn@/ /Y/ u in kunnen


Front vowels

/a/ maken /E/ best /e/ neer often pronounced as a diphthong) /2/ keuken (often pronounced as a diphthong) /I/ minst /i/ klieven /y/ Ruud

Diphthongs

/EI/ jij, intimiteit /@Y/ huis /Aw/ vrouw


Many Dutch words have been derived from English, especially since the twentieth century. The reverse is much less common, but Dutch origins can be found in the following English words (although some might have been derived from related Low German words instead):

EnglishDutchmeaning (if different)
ahoyhoihello
to bluffbluffento brag
boomboomor. tree
bossbaas
brandybrandewijnlit. burn wine
bundlebundel
buoyboeior. something to bind to: boeien-to shackle
to cacklekakelen
coleslawkoolslalit. cabbage salad
cookiekoekje
cruisekruisento make a cross
deckdek
dockdok
to drilldrillen
dykedijk
easelezelor. donkey
to etchetsen
freebootervrijbuiter
freightvracht
frolicvrolijkcheerful, gay
fuckfokkento breed
furloughverlofor. permission
gasgasNeologism from Huygens, derived from the Greek "Kaos"
to grabgrijpento seize, to grasp, to snatch
guildgilde
halibotheilbotlit. holy flounder
to hoisthijsen
holsterholster
HottentotHottentot
keelkiel
to keelhaulkielhalenlit. to haul keel
knapsackknapzaklit. snapping bag
landscapelandschaplit. landship
leaklek
lotteryloterij
maelstrommaalstroomlit. milling stream
manikinmannekenlit. little man
measlesmazelen
morassmoeras
offalafvallit. "that which falls off"
pumppomp
quackkwakzalverlit. someone who daubs ointments
rosterroosterschedule, or. grating
to roverovento rob
rucksackrugzak
Santa ClausSinterklaasSaint Nicholas
scowschouw
skate, to skateschaats, schaatsen
sketchschets
skipperschipperlit. shipper
sled, sledge, sleighslede, slee
sloopsloep
to slurpslurpen
smacksmak
to smeltsmeltento melt
to smugglesmokkelen
to snoopsnoepento (furtively) eat candy
snuffsnuiftabaklit. sniff tobacco
splintersplinter
to splitsplijten
spookspookghost
to stokestokento rake
stoopstoeppavement
stovestoof
wafflewafel
wagonwagencart, carriage, wagon
yachtjachtor. hunt
yankeeJan KeesPersonal name, originally used mockingly to describe pro-(french)revolutionary citizens, with allusion to the small "Kees" dog, then for "colonials" in New Amsterdam)

lit.: the literal meaning of the Dutch word (the actual meaning is similar to the English one)
or.: the word originally had the meaning specified, but is in Dutch also used with the same meaning as in English


See also Common phrases in different languages.

/Talk