History of the Dutch Language: Everything You Need to Know

Whenever there is talk about the Netherlands, everybody thinks of beautiful canals and tulip fields. Another thing that makes the Netherlands unique is its language. Dutch is considered a highly fascinating language with a lot of potentials that attracts people to know more about this language.

The Dutch language is a West Germanic language that is currently spoken by around 28 million people worldwide.

When it comes to learning the Dutch language, is not difficult as it shares a lot of similarities with modern German and English.

They both belong to the same language origin group over 1,000 years ago.

However, there is always confusion related to Dutch and Deutsch. Until about the 17th Century, the word “Dutch” referred to all Germanic-speaking areas.

On the other hand, the word Deutsch is the German word for the German language. So, there is a difference in both terms.

Like other languages such as French, English, and Hebrew language, Dutch language too has a long linguistic history and there are several loanwords from other languages.

When dealing with a Dutch translation, the selection of the right language translators ensures the correct words are used for translating the solutions.

Origin Of the Dutch Language

It is considered in 200 CE, the Proto-Germanic had split into various dialects.

In this, the Western dialect served as the progenitor of the Dutch.

The earlier language in about 500 BCE was what is now heard in Germany, Denmark, and Scandinavia.

In the 17th and 18th centuries, the increase in worldwide shipping activity laid the groundwork for developing the Dutch language.

Dutch has Proto-Germanic origins similar to all other Germanic languages.

Around 60% of the Belgium people, where the language is known as Flemish are native speakers of Dutch.

Evolutions Of the Dutch Language

Dutch has a rich history and it has seen great evolution because of the different lands and events in Europe.

A business that consider global business expansion and selects operating in the Dutch language has to seek translation.

In this, professional translators know better about the history of the Dutch language and its evolution as classified into:

● Old Dutch

● Middle Dutch

● Modern Dutch

Although Dutch continued to develop during different periods, the language has remained relatively unchanged since the 17th century.

Dutch translators who are well aware of the history can deliver the best translation for any niche.

1- Old Dutch

Dutch derived from Proto-Germanic roots like all Germanic languages.

By 200 CE, the Proto-Germanic roots diverged into different dialects, and giving rise to the Dutch’s ancestor.

With this, several regional differences emerged with the separation of German, English, and Frisian but they were mostly intelligible until the 8th century.

While pronunciation changed in various languages however, the old Dutch language wasn’t affected by these changes.

2- Middle Dutch

When you think how to launch a product related to literature solutions in the Dutch market, there is a need to understand the role of the Middle Dutch language.

Middle Dutch is a period between 1150 and 1500 in the language’s history which is considered an interesting aspect due to the richness of literature.

There were a lot of famous Dutch literary work that was created in this period and it is still studied by pupils in the Netherlands and other countries.

So, whenever there is a need to understand the literature of the Dutch language, there is a need to tap into the works during the Middle Dutch period.

3- Modern Dutch

Modern Dutch belong to the period that begins with the Standardization of Dutch in 1477.

In this, there was the rise of the two most important dialects from Flanders and Brabant.

There was another Antwerp dialect that lay geographically between the two and became the most influential when Standard Dutch was coined.

When you look for absolute translation solutions near me, you have to be clear with your requirements so the translator can use the right dialect for the Dutch translation.

Dutch Dialects and Influence On Regional Languages

Though the Dutch language has mainly two dialects, Flanders and Brabant.

However, other languages in the region are closely related to it but not the same as the Dutch language.

● Frisian: this is generally spoken in the Northern province of Friesland in the Netherlands

● Low Saxon: it is spoken in the Northeastern part of the Netherlands

● Limburgish: it is highly spoken in Southeastern Netherlands and Northeastern Belgium

Other Countries And Dutch Language

The Dutch language has 24 million speakers worldwide but it is the official language of the Netherlands.

Dutch language together with French and German becomes three official languages of Belgium.

You can find the speakers in a small part of France and on the islands of Curaçao, Sint Maarten, and Aruba.

This is because they all are part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Also, it is spoken in Bonaire, Saba, and Sint Eustatius.

So, when you use translation as one of the crucial customer retention strategies, this helps you to connect with Dutch speakers in different regions.

Also, if you travel to South Africa, you may think people speak Dutch, but they speak Afrikaans which has evolved a lot from Dutch.

It is always seen that the Dutch language share a special relationship with French, English, and German.

However, it influences the French language.

In this, many words have found their way and got adapted into the French language.


Dutch is a very interesting language and to understand it perfectly, there is a need to dive right into the language itself.

Dutch is still the sole official language and around 85% of people speak it as a first or second language.

So, getting specific translation solutions in Mumbai can help your solutions to connect with a larger Dutch audience.

Seeking professional translators for the Dutch language is best due to their wide knowledge. If you are looking for trustworthy Dutch language translation solutions, contact us at +91-8527599523 or quickly send us a instant quote.

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