Dutch Language Facts
If you’re thinking about learning Dutch it’s always good to know a little about the origins and history of the language you are learning. Here, Cactus Language offers up our most interesting Dutch language facts:
5 Interesting Dutch Language Facts
1. The Dutch language is a West Germanic language
The Dutch language derived from the Frankish language, which also influenced Old French. The earliest documents written in Dutch date from the 12th century.
2. There are 28 million Dutch speakers worldwide
22 million of Dutch speakers are native speakers. Dutch is mostly spoken in the Netherlands and Belgium, where it has official status, as well as in the Dutch Antilles and Suriname.
3. Several Dutch words made it into English
The Dutch words made it into English often via the Dutch colons settling in the American colonies in the 17th century. Examples of Dutch loanwords include apartheid, bamboo, bazooka, blink, bluff, brandy, coleslaw, cookie, cruise, drill, gherkin, gin, iceberg, Santa Claus and waffel.
4. As a Germanic language, Dutch has numerous compound words
Compound words are words created by adding up several smaller words. Such words include:
- Kindercarnavalsoptochtvoorbereidingswerkzaamhedenplan, deemed the longest Dutch word, and meaning “preparation activities plan for a children’s carnival procession”;
- Vervoerdersaansprakelijkheidsverzekering, standing for “carriers’ liability insurance”;
- Overeenstemmingsbeoordelingsprocedures, meaning “conformity assessment procedures”.
5. Dutch has incorporated many foreign words
Borrowed words actually account for 75% of Dutch, with most words originating from French. Many of these still have the same spelling as in French, for example capuchon (“hood of a coat”), chantage (“blackmail”), horloge (“clock”), jus d’orange (“orange juice”), pantalon (“trousers”), and plafond (“ceiling”).
How to book with Cactus
Simply select which language you would like to learn and from the box below and click lets go.
Take level test
This is a quick test to help you find the right course for your current level of knowledge.
Book your course
Use our simple online booking system to select your course.
Frequently asked questions
What will I learn?
Our Course Outlines give an overview of the content and learning framework of Cactus courses. Includes themes, grammar and vocabulary you can typically expect to cover. These are intended as a guide only. Language teachers may at times adapt the course content to suit the specific level, aims and interests of the class.
How do I know what level I am?
Are you unsure where to start or progress to? Then take our level test and read our level descriptions for guidance.
Do I receive a qualification or certificate?
At the end of your course you receive a certificate of participation. You will be able to be download it from your MyCactus account. This confirms the language and level of course you have taken. Our course levels are based on two internationally recognised systems. You will have a universally accepted reference for your studies. (Important: Please note that you must complete the end of course questionnaire sent to you to be able to get your certificate! You will receive the course questionnaire by e-mail at the end of your course.)
Do I need a course book?
You will need a course book to attend your course. Course books are not included in the course fees. We recommend that you buy your own course book separately before your course starts. We will let you know which course book you will require and advise where you can purchase this. Please note that a course book often covers more than one level. So if you progress to the next course, you may not necessarily need to buy a new book. Again, we will advise you of this at the time. The course book is chosen by our teachers and academic team. This is based on which book is most suitable for the level of the class whilst offering the most communicative approach.
Still have questions?
Sign up for our offers
Exclusive discounts on your course with Cactus directly on your inbox!