Off topic: The Flemish language does not exist!
Thread poster: Williamson

Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:24
Flemish to English
+ ...
Sep 9, 2003

according to

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Marisapad  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:24
English to Italian
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I'm very curious... Sep 9, 2003

Perhaps this is not the right place to ask, but I never knew how things REALLY are concerning Dutch/Flemish and Holland/Belgium.

Now the article/link is clear, but probably you don't agree with it - it appears so from your posting.

If you have a minute, tell us what is what in this confusion!
Thank you

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Aisha Maniar  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:24
Member (2003)
Arabic to English
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I agree with Marisa... Sep 9, 2003

What is the actual difference between Flemish and Dutch? I've always been lead to believe(through reading - I confess to knowing 0% Dutch or Flemish!) that the difference is fundamentally political and historical as opposed to overtly linguistic. Is that so? I'm curious to know as well...:-)

[Edited at 2003-09-09 10:45]

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xxxMarc P  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:24
German to English
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The Flemish language does not exist! Sep 9, 2003

That's nothing. Langenscheidt has now decided that English in no longer spoken in the US. It now sells dictionaries for "Amerikanisch".

Rumour has it that Collins is to bring out a dictionary for Bundesrepublikanisch.


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Will Matter  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:24
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Frisian Sep 9, 2003

'Good milk and good cheese is good English and good Fris' but other than that minor contribution i'm staying out of the Dutch/Vlaams controversy, it's a sociocultural 'bomb' and you're asking for trouble by simply bringing it up....No, thanks, you're on your own with this one.....
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Evert DELOOF-SYS  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:24
English to Dutch
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A lot of thruth in the reference mentioned Sep 9, 2003

Williamson wrote:

according to[/quote]

And hardly anything else to add to right now.

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Els Hoefman  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:24
Member (2004)
English to Dutch
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American English / British English Sep 9, 2003

I always compare Dutch / Flemish to American and British English. It is the same language with regional differences, mainly on the level of pronuncation and sometimes word use.
Those defenders of Flemish as a language indeed have mainly political and historical reasons to do so.
I won't object if people say I speak Flemish, but I always say I speak Dutch. The official name of our language is indeed Dutch.

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Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:24
Flemish to English
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In the mind of overseas posters. Sep 9, 2003

I have posted this, because for outsiders there seems to be a bit of confusion when seeking a Dutch-speaking translator.
I can imagine that in the mind overseas posters these are totally different languages, but this is so.
I wonder why on websites such as Proz the distinction between Flemish and Dutch is made when it is one and the same language?

[Edited at 2003-09-09 13:54]

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LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 19:24
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
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Differences between Flemish and Dutch Sep 9, 2003


"In speaking with foreigners, Flemings will tend to speak standard
Dutch; therefore, it is unlikely that foreigners will notice much of
a difference between the Belgian and Netherlands varieties of Dutch,
except in the pronunciation. This concerns the pronunciation of the
phoneme written as g, which in the Netherlands is a (voiceless?)
uvular fricative (close to [x]) and in Belgium is a voiced glottal
glide (voiced [h]) or velar fricative. There is also a tendency
in NL to pronounce long /e/ and /o/ as diphthongs, i.e., with a palatal
or labial glide, resp.: [ey], [ow]; this tendency is not present in
Belgium. One respondent reports a difference in the pronunciation
of the phoneme written w: in the Netherlands, this is a voiced bi-
labial fricative ([B] - Greek beta); in Belgium, this is a bilabial
glide ([w]).

Lexical differences between the Belgian and Netherlands varieties of
Dutch are reminiscent of those that exist between U.S. and British

Flemish Netherlands Dutch
- ----- -----------------

chauffage verwaarming 'heating'
jeans spijkerbroek 'jeans'
microgolf magnetron 'microwave oven'
camion vrachtwagen 'truck' (U.S.), 'lorry' (U.K.)
frigo koelkast 'refrigerator, fridge, ice box'

Excuseer Pardon/Sorry 'Excuse me'
Het is niks. Het geeft niet. 'It doesn't matter.'
Wablief? Wat (zegt U)? 'Pardon?' 'What did you say?'
hetwelk hetgeen/wat 'that, which' (relative pronoun)
Ik vind het Ik vind dit 'I like this (very much).'
plezierig. heel leuk.
Jan ziet Marie Jan houdt van 'John loves Marie.'
graag. Marie.

Also, "stappen" means 'to walk' in Belgium, 'to step' in the Netherlands;
"lopen" means 'to walk' in NL, but 'to run' in B (cf. standard German
"laufen" 'to run' vs. southern German "laufen" 'to walk'; also standard
German "sich verlaufen" 'to get lost while walking' [not running!]).

There are some slight grammatical differences between Flemish (again,
this means the spoken southern Dutch [zuid-nederlands] dialects of
Belgium) and Dutch. In Dutch the 2nd p. sg. pronoun is "jij/je," while
in Flemish it is "gij/ge" (and is never used in writing). This
difference is accompanied by a difference in verb inflection (agreement):
Dutch: "Heb jij dat gedaan?" 'Did you do that?/Have you done that?'
Flemish: "Hebde gij dat gedaan?"

Also, Flemish exhibits a tendency to use the formal 2nd p. sg. pronoun
in contexts where Dutch exhibits the informal: (Flemish) "Kan ik uw
pen lenen?" vs. Dutch "Kan ik je pen lenen?" 'May/Can I borrow your

Flemish tends to reduplicate the 1st p. sg. pronoun when it is preceded
by the predicate verb: (Flemish) "Dat hebek ik gedaan," (Dutch) "Dat
heb ik gedann" 'I did/have done that'; (Flemish) "Wat ruikek ik hier?",
(Dutch) "Wat ruik ik hier?" 'What do I smell here?' Reduplication is
observable also after the relative pronoun "dat": (Flemish) "het papier
dakek ik U gegeven heb," (Dutch) "het papier dat ik U gegeven heb" 'the
paper that I gave you (have given you)'.

When modal verbs occur with compound infinitives, Flemish differs from
Dutch in the order of the constituents:
Dutch: "Dat zal gedaan moeten worden."
Flemish: "Dat zal moeten gedaan worden." 'That will have to be done.'
Dutch: "Dat zal gedaan kunnen worden."
Flemish: "Dat zal kunnen gedaan worden." 'It will be possible to do that.'

(cf. in this regard U.S. "He gave me it" vs. U.K. "He gave it me" or a
3rd variation on the ordering of constituents found in German: "Das
wird getan werden muessen," "Das wird getan werden koennen," resp.)

Where the standard language (Dutch) exhibits common (non-neuter) gender,
the Belgian dialects (Flemish) may still exhibit a distinction between
masculine and feminine nouns, cf. West Flemish "'n/den baard" (masc.),
"ne/de tafel" (fem.) vs. Dutch "een/de baard," "een/de tafel," 'a/the
beard,' 'a/the table,' resp.

Finally, Flemings tend to use sentence-final tag words translatable
as 'hear,' 'say,' 'say you' (comparable to the Canadian use of sentence-
final 'eh?'). These are often used by outsiders trying to imitate
the speech habits of Flemings.

Again, I am very grateful to all those who were kind enough to provide
such comprehensive replies to my queries.

Associate Professor Ph (316) WSU-3180 (978-3180)
Wichita State University Fx (316) WSU-3293 (978-3293)
Wichita, Kansas 67260-0011 USA"

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Mario Marcolin  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:24
Member (2003)
English to Swedish
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Spoken language Sep 10, 2003

When it comes to spoken language,there is as far as I know no linguistic boundry between Belgium and the Netherlands.
On the contrary, three (south Dutch) dialect areas straddle the political border:
1)The south-eastern dialects (Belgian and Dutch Limburg
2)The south central dialects (Brabant, Antwerp, East Flanders, North Brabant and southern Gelderland)
3)The south-western dialects (West Flanders, French-Flanders, Zeeland and the islands of Goeree and Overflakkee in the province of South Holland)

Now the standard in Austria is German, though noticeably different from the standard in Germany. Thus some speak of "Austrian German".
Perhaps one should find a similar name for the Dutch in Belgium?

[Edited at 2003-09-10 15:55]

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Uldis Liepkalns  Identity Verified
Local time: 02:24
Member (2003)
English to Latvian
+ ...
Re: Differences between Flemish and Dutch Sep 10, 2003

Yeah, in short "Language is a dialect with an army"
I've forgotten the author, though...


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