About 6 months ago, I wrote a post entitled 30 Amusing Dutch Words. It was shared, A LOT, so I guess you were mildly interested in it.
Laura Frame, my partner in crime for that post, has come up with some more cute illustrations of Dutch words. It would therefore be a shame not to share some more!!
This post shows you why it’s a bad idea to directly translate Dutch words into English…
Eekhoorntjesbrood – literally translated as ‘little squirrel’s bread’ it actually means porcini mushrooms. Leuk, hè?
Means leopard, but is literally translated as ‘lazy horse’.
This is the word for a crow bar, but the literal translation is ‘cow foot’. Tskkkkk.
Yuh huh, you got it – ‘parrot diver’. It actually means puffin.
Continuing the animal theme… we have ‘garden snake’ – which is actually just a garden hose.
And for real emergencies… a ‘fire snake’!! Ok, ok… it’s really just a fire hose.
Gordeldier means armadillo, but the literal translation is ‘belt animal’ 😀
The direct Dutch translation for polar bear is ‘ice bear’. (IJs can also mean ice cream! Even better!)
Crossing animal/flower genres, we have the ‘horse flower’. Which is actually a dandelion.
Literally meaning ‘loveable maggot’ – madelief is the word for a daisy.
A foxglove is literally translated as ‘finger hat herb’. (Also an ideal candidate for a funny English word illustration!!)
‘Flower reading’ is the way you say anthology in Dutch.
Literally meaning ‘peanut cheese’, pinkakaas is the word for peanut butter.
Where did I put my toilet glasses??? ‘Toiletbril’ means toilet seat!
‘Dust sucker’! Thankfully it means vacuum cleaner!!
Stembanden, meaning vocal chords. The literal translation is ‘voice tyres’.
Definitely one of my person favourites!! Mother-in-law is literally translated as ‘clean mother’. Schoon can also mean beautiful.
Are you a ‘party nose’? You might be better known as a party animal.
A misfit or ‘being an outsider’ is literally translated from Dutch to English as a ‘ little outside leg’.
“Quick, call the fire weather!” Brandweer is the word for fire brigade…
(In this instance, weer comes from weren which means to avert. So ‘Brandweer’ means fire defence or fire aversion. And yes, that’s a map of Belgium – the illustrator has ties with Belgium.)
If you have any more suggestions of amusing Dutch words for Laura to illustrate – please comment below! And if you want to give Laura some love (and congratulate her on her awesome drawings) here’s her Facebook Page.
So, what have been your biggest fails so far whilst learning Dutch? (Or any language?) Ondernemer was a personal highlight of mine – I thought it meant undertaker, but it’s actually entrepreneur!! Plus “Ik heb mijn benen uit.” Totally normal to say that in English, but in Dutch it would insinuate that I have prosthetic limbs. Oops!