Flemish people

Last updated
Total population
c.7 million
(2011 estimate)
Regions with significant populations
Flag of Flanders.svg  Flanders 6,450,765 [1]
Flag of the United States.svg  United States Indeterminable [a]
(352,630 Belgians) [2]
Flag of France.svg  France 187,750 [3]
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada 13,840–176,615 [b] [4]
Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa 55,200 [3]
Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia 15,130 [3]
Flag of Brazil.svg  Brazil 6,000 [3]
Dutch (Flemish Dutch)
Roman Catholic majority
Protestant minorities [lower-alpha 1]
Related ethnic groups
Walloons and other Germanic peoples (primarily the Dutch, Afrikaners and Frisians)

^a U.S. population census does not differentiate between Belgians and Flemish, therefore the number of the latter is unknown. Flemish people might also indiscriminately identify as Dutch, due to their close association, shared history, language and cultural heritage. There were as many as 4.27 million Dutch Americans, unknown percentage of which might be Flemings.
^b In 2011, 13,840 respondents stated Flemish ethnic origin. Another 176,615 reported Belgian. See List of Canadians by ethnicity

The Flemish or Flemings (Dutch : Vlamingen; Dutch pronunciation: [vlaːmɪŋɛn] ( Loudspeaker.svg listen )) are a Germanic ethnic group native to Flanders, in modern Belgium, who speak Flemish Dutch. [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] They are one of two principal ethnic groups in Belgium, the other being the French-speaking Walloons. Flemish people make up the majority of the Belgian population (about 60%). Historically, all inhabitants of the medieval County of Flanders were referred to as "Flemings", irrespective of the language spoken. [10] The contemporary region of Flanders comprises a part of this historical county, as well as parts of the medieval duchy of Brabant and the medieval county of Loon.

Dutch language West Germanic language

Dutch(Nederlands ) is a West Germanic language spoken by around 24 million people as a first language and 5 million people as a second language, constituting the majority of people in the Netherlands and Belgium. It is the third-most-widely spoken Germanic language, after its close relatives English and German.

Germanic peoples A group of northern European tribes in Roman times

The Germanic peoples were an indigenous ethnolinguistic group of Northern European origin identified by Roman-era authors as distinct from neighbouring Celtic peoples, and identified in modern scholarship as speakers, at least for the most part, of early Germanic languages.

Ethnic group Socially defined category of people who identify with each other

An ethnic group or ethnicity is a category of people who identify with each other, usually on the basis of a presumed common genealogy or ancestry or on similarities such as common language or dialect, history, society, culture or nation. Ethnicity is often used synonymously with the term nation, particularly in cases of ethnic nationalism, and is separate from but related to the concept of races.



The sense of "Flemish" identity increased significantly after the Belgian Revolution. Prior to this, the term "Flemings" in the Dutch language was in first place used for the inhabitants of the former County of Flanders. Flemish however had been used since the 14th century to refer to the language and dialects of both the peoples of Flanders and the Duchy of Brabant. [11] The modern Belgian province of Limburg was not part of the treaty, and only came to be considered "Flemish" in the 19th century.[ citation needed ]

Belgian Revolution Conflict in western Europe, 1830–1831

The Belgian Revolution was the conflict which led to the secession of the southern provinces from the United Kingdom of the Netherlands and the establishment of an independent Kingdom of Belgium.

Duchy of Brabant State of the Holy Roman Empire

The Duchy of Brabant was a State of the Holy Roman Empire established in 1183. It developed from the Landgraviate of Brabant and formed the heart of the historic Low Countries, part of the Burgundian Netherlands from 1430 and of the Habsburg Netherlands from 1482, until it was partitioned after the Dutch revolt.

The Wedding Dance by Pieter Brueghel the Younger, 1625 Pieter Brueghel de Jonge - De bruiloft dans (1625).jpg
The Wedding Dance by Pieter Brueghel the Younger, 1625

In 1830 the southern provinces of the United Netherlands proclaimed their independence. French-dialect speaking population, as well as the administration and elites, feared the loss of their status and autonomy under Dutch rule while the rapid industrialization in the south highlighted economic differences between the two. Under French rule (1794–1815), French was enforced as the only official language in public life, resulting in a Frenchification of the elites and, to a lesser extent, the middle classes. The Dutch king allowed the use of both Dutch and French dialects as administrative languages in the Flemish provinces. He also enacted laws to reestablish Dutch in schools. [12] The language policy was not the only cause of the secession; the Roman Catholic majority viewed the sovereign, the Protestant William I, with suspicion and were heavily stirred by the Roman Catholic Church which suspected William of wanting to enforce Protestantism. Lastly, Belgian liberals were dissatisfied with William for his allegedly despotic behaviour.[ citation needed ]

United Kingdom of the Netherlands kingdom in Western Europe between 1815–1830 (1839)

The United Kingdom of the Netherlands is the unofficial name given to the Kingdom of the Netherlands as it existed between 1815 and 1839. The United Netherlands was created in the aftermath of the Napoleonic Wars through the fusion of territories that had belonged to the former Dutch Republic, Austrian Netherlands, and Prince-Bishopric of Liège. The polity was a constitutional monarchy, ruled by William I of the House of Orange-Nassau.

French period Late 19th-century term for the era between 1794 and 1815, during which most of Europe were directly or indirectly under French rule or within the French sphere of influence

In Northern European historiography, the term French period refers to the period between 1794 and 1815 during which most of Northern Europe was controlled by Republican or Napoleonic France. The exact duration of the period varies by the location concerned.

William I of the Netherlands King of the Netherlands and Grand Duke of Luxembourg 1815 - 1840

William I was a Prince of Orange and the first King of the Netherlands and Grand Duke of Luxembourg.

Following the revolt, the language reforms of 1823 were the first Dutch laws to be abolished and the subsequent years would see a number of laws restricting the use of the Dutch language. [13] This policy led to the gradual emergence of the Flemish Movement, that was built on earlier anti-French feelings of injustice, as expressed in writings (for example by the late 18th-century writer, Jan Verlooy) which criticized the Southern Francophile elites. The efforts of this movement during the following 150 years, have to no small extent facilitated the creation of the de jure social, political and linguistic equality of Dutch from the end of the 19th century.[ citation needed ]

Flemish Movement political movement for emancipation and greater autonomy of the Belgian region of Flanders

The Flemish Movement is the political movement for greater autonomy of the Belgian region of Flanders, for protection of the Dutch language, for the overall protection of Flemish culture and history, and in some cases, for splitting from Belgium and forming an independent state.

Jan-Baptist Verlooy Belgian politician

Jan-Baptist Chrysostomus Verlooy was a Flemish jurist and politician from the Southern Netherlands.

Francophile someone with a strong interest in or love of French people, culture, and history

A Francophile (Gallophile) is a person who has a strong affinity towards any or all of the French language, French history, French culture or French people. That affinity may include France itself or its history, language, cuisine, literature, etc. The term "Francophile" can be contrasted with Francophobe, someone who dislikes all that is French.

After the Hundred Years War many Flemings migrated to the Azores. By 1490 there were 2,000 Flemings living in the Azores. Willem van der Haegen was the original sea captain who brought settlers from Flanders to the Azores. Today many Azoreans trace their genealogy from present day Flanders. Many of their customs and traditions are distinctively Flemish in nature such as Windmills used for grain, São Jorge cheese and several religious events such as the imperios and the feast of the Cult of the Holy Spirit.

Azores Portuguese archipelago in the North Atlantic Ocean

The Azores, officially the Autonomous Region of the Azores, is one of the two autonomous regions of Portugal. It is an archipelago composed of nine volcanic islands in the North Atlantic Ocean about 1,360 km (850 mi) west of continental Portugal, about 1,643 km (1,021 mi) west of Lisbon, in continental Portugal, about 1,507 km (936 mi) northwest of Morocco, and about 1,925 km (1,196 mi) southeast of Newfoundland, Canada.

Willem van der Haegen Flemish merchant

D. Willem van der Haegen, or Willem De Kersemakere, known in Portuguese as Guilherme da Silveira, or Guilherme Casmaca, was a Flemish-born Azorean entrepreneur, explorer, and colonizer. He was a pioneer colonizer in Azorean history and his descendants formed part of the original Azorean nobility.

São Jorge cheese Portugese cheese

São Jorge Cheese is a semi-hard to hard cheese, produced on the island of São Jorge, in the Portuguese archipelago of the Azores, certified as a Região Demarcada do Queijo de São Jorge and regulated as a registered Denominação de Origem Protegida.

Identity and culture

Map of the medieval County of Flanders. Quad Flandria.jpg
Map of the medieval County of Flanders.

Within Belgium, Flemings form a clearly distinguishable group set apart by their language and customs. However, when compared to the Netherlands most of these cultural and linguistic differences quickly fade, as the Flemish share the same language, similar or identical customs and (though chiefly with the southern part of today's Netherlands) traditional religion with the Dutch. [14] However, the popular perception of being a single polity varies greatly, depending on subject matter, locality and personal background. Generally, Flemings will seldom identify themselves as being Dutch and vice versa, especially on a national level. [15]

Dutch people or the Dutch are a Germanic ethnic group native to the Netherlands. They share a common culture and speak the Dutch language. Dutch people and their descendants are found in migrant communities worldwide, notably in Aruba, Suriname, Guyana, Curaçao, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, and the United States. The Low Countries were situated around the border of France and the Holy Roman Empire, forming a part of their respective peripheries, and the various territories of which they consisted had become virtually autonomous by the 13th century. Under the Habsburgs, the Netherlands were organised into a single administrative unit, and in the 16th and 17th centuries the Northern Netherlands gained independence from Spain as the Dutch Republic. The high degree of urbanization characteristic of Dutch society was attained at a relatively early date. During the Republic the first series of large-scale Dutch migrations outside of Europe took place.

This is partly caused by the popular stereotypes in the Netherlands as well as Flanders which are mostly based on the 'cultural extremes' of both Northern and Southern culture. [16] But also in great part because of the history of emancipation of their culture in Belgium, which has left many Flemings with a high degree of national consciousness, which can be very marked among some Dutch-speaking Belgians. [17] Alongside this overarching political and social affiliation, there also exists a strong tendency towards regionalism, in which individuals greatly identify themselves culturally through their native province, city, region or dialect they speak.


Flemings speak Dutch (specifically its southern variant, which is sometimes colloquially called 'Flemish'). It is the majority language in Belgium, being spoken natively by three-fifths of the population. Its various dialects contain a number of lexical and a few grammatical features which distinguish them from the standard language. [18] As in the Netherlands, the pronunciation of Standard Dutch is affected by the native dialect of the speaker. At the same time East Flemish forms a continuum with both Brabantic and West Flemish. Standard Dutch is primarily based on the Hollandic dialect (spoken in the northwestern Netherlands) and to a lesser extent on Brabantic, which is the most dominant Dutch dialect of the Southern Netherlands and Flanders.


Approximately 75% of the Flemish people are by baptism assumed Roman Catholic, though a still diminishing minority of less than 8% attends Mass on a regular basis and nearly half of the inhabitants of Flanders are agnostic or atheist. A 2006 inquiry in Flanders, showed 55% chose to call themselves religious, 36% believe that God created the universe. [19]

National symbols

The Flag of Flanders Flag of Flanders.svg
The Flag of Flanders

The official flag and coat of arms of the Flemish Community represents a black lion with red claws and tongue on a yellow field ( or a lion rampant sable armed and langued gules ). [20] A flag with a completely black lion had been in wide use before 1991 when the current version was officially adopted by the Flemish Community. That older flag was at times recognized by government sources (alongside the version with red claws and tongue). [21] [22] Today, only the flag bearing a lion with red claws and tongue is recognized by Belgian law, while the flag with the all black lion is mostly used by Flemish separatist movements. The Flemish authorities also use two logos of a highly stylized black lion which show the claws and tongue in either red or black. [23] The first documented use [24] of the Flemish lion was on the seal of Philip d'Alsace, count of Flanders of 1162. As of that date the use of the Flemish coat of arms (or a lion rampant sable) remained in use throughout the reigns of the d'Alsace, Flanders (2nd) and Dampierre dynasties of counts. The motto "Vlaanderen de Leeuw" (Flanders the lion) was allegedly present on the arms of Pieter de Coninck at the Battle of the Golden Spurs on July 11, 1302. [25] [26] [27] After the acquisition of Flanders by the Burgundian dukes the lion was only used in escutcheons. It was only after the creation of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands that the coat of arms (surmounted by a chief bearing the Royal Arms of the Netherlands) once again became the official symbol of the new province East Flanders.




The first sizeable wave of Flemish migration to Canada occurred in the 1870s, when Saint Boniface proved a popular destination for work in local flour mills, brick yards and railway yards. Similarly, Flemish were drawn to smaller villages in Manitoba, where jobs in farming were available. [28] In the early 20th Century, Flemish settled in significant numbers across Ontario, particularly attracted by the tobacco growing industry, in the towns of Chatham, Leamington, Tillsonburg, Wallaceburg, Simcoe, Sarnia and Port Hope. [29] [30]

France & The Netherlands

The original County of Flanders encompassed areas which today belong to France and The Netherlands, but are still host to people of Flemish descent and some continued use of Flemish Dutch. Namely, these are Zeelandic Flanders and the Arrondissement of Dunkirk (historically known as French Westhoek). The people of North Brabant also share related ancestry.

United Kingdom

Prior to the 1600s, there were several substantial waves of Flemish migration to the United Kingdom. Today, numerous towns in England and Wales boast large or majority populations with Flemish ancestry as a result. The first wave fled to England in the early 12th Century, escaping damages from a storm across the coast of Flanders, where they were largely resettled in Pembrokeshire by Henry I. They changed the culture and accent in south Pembrokeshire to such an extent, that it led to the area receiving the name Little England beyond Wales. Haverfordwest [31] and Tenby consequently grew as important settlements for the Flemish settlers. [32]

In the 14th Century, encouraged by King Edward III and perhaps in part due to his marriage to Philippa of Hainault, another wave of migration to England occurred when skilled cloth weavers from Flanders were granted permission to settle there and contribute to the then booming cloth and woollen industries. [33] These migrants particularly settled in the growing Lancashire and Yorkshire textile towns of Manchester, [34] Bolton, [35] Blackburn, [36] Liversedge, [37] Bury, [38] Halifax [39] [40] and Wakefield. [41]

Demand for Flemish weavers in England occurred again in both the 15th and 16th Centuries, but this time particularly focused on towns close to the coastline of East Anglia and South East England. Many from this generation of weavers went to Colchester, Sandwich [42] and Braintree. [43] In 1582, it was estimated that there could have been around 1600 Flemish in Sandwich, today almost half of its total population. [44] London, Norwich and North Walsham, however, were the most popular destinations, and the nickname for Norwich City F.C. fans, Canaries, is derived from the fact that many of the Norfolk weavers kept pet canaries. [45] [46] The town of Whitefield, near Bury, also claims to owe its name to Flemish cloth weavers that settled in the area during this era, who would lay their cloths out in the sun to bleach them. [47]

United States

In the United States, the cities of De Pere and Green Bay in Wisconsin attracted many Flemish and Walloon immigrants during the 19th Century. [48] [49] The small town of Belgique was settled almost entirely by Flemish immigrants, although a significant number of its residents left after the Great Flood of 1993.

See also

Notes and references

  1. Mainly in the Reformed tradition, although also a scarce population of Lutherans.
  1. "Structuur van de bevolking – België / Brussels Hoofdstedelijk Gewest / Vlaams Gewest / Waals Gewest / De 25 bevolkingsrijke gemeenten (2000–2006)" [Structure of the population - Belgium / Brussels-Capital Region / Flemish Region / Walloon Region / The 25 populated municipalities (2000-2006)] (in Dutch). Belgian Federal Government Service (ministry) of Economy – Directorate-general Statistics Belgium. 2007. Retrieved May 23, 2007.— Note: 59% of the Belgians can be considered Flemish, i.e., Dutch-speaking: Native speakers of Dutch living in Wallonia and of French in Flanders are relatively small minorities which furthermore largely balance one another, hence counting all inhabitants of each unilingual area to the area's language can cause only insignificant inaccuracies (99% can speak the language). Dutch: Flanders' 6.079 million inhabitants and about 15% of Brussels' 1.019 million are 6.23 million or 59.3% of the 10.511 million inhabitants of Belgium (2006); German: 70,400 in the German-speaking Community (which has language facilities for its less than 5% French-speakers), and an estimated 20,000–25,000 speakers of German in the Walloon Region outside the geographical boundaries of their official Community, or 0.9%; French: in the latter area as well as mainly in the rest of Wallonia (3.414 - 0.093 = 3.321 million) and 85% of the Brussels inhabitants (0.866 million) thus 4.187 million or 39.8%; together indeed 100%[ dead link ]
  2. Results   American Fact Finder (US Census Bureau)
  3. 1 2 3 4 "Vlamingen in de Wereld". Vlamingen in de Wereld, a foundation offering services for Flemish expatriates, with cooperation of the Flemish government. Archived from the original on 2007-02-05. Retrieved 2007-03-01.
  4. 2011 Canadian Census
  5. Cole, Jeffrey E. (2011). Ethnic Groups of Europe: An Encyclopedia: An Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. p. 136. ISBN   1598843036 . Retrieved March 30, 2019. The Flemish (Dutch: Vlamingen), also called Flemings, are a Germanic people living in Belgium
  6. Minahan, James (2000). One Europe, Many Nations: A Historical Dictionary of European National Groups. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 251. ISBN   0313309841 . Retrieved March 30, 2019. The Flemish, also called Flemings, are a Germanic people closely related to the Dutch* of the Netherlands
  7. Minahan, James (2000). One Europe, many nations: a historical dictionary of European national groups. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 769. ISBN   0313309841 . Retrieved May 25, 2013. Germanic nations:.. Flemish...
  8. Homans, George Caspar (2017). Coming to My Senses: The Autobiography of a Sociologist. Routledge. p. 48. ISBN   1351527673 . Retrieved March 30, 2019. The English are ultimately of Germanic origin, as are the Flemish, Dutch, Frisians, Danes, Swedes, Norwegians, and Icelanders
  9. Pavlovic, Zoran (2007). Europe. Infobase Publishing. p. 53. ISBN   1-4381-0455-3 . Retrieved 9 March 2014. Germanic stock includes Germans, Swedes, Norwegians, Danes, Dutch (Flemish), and English (Anglo-Saxon)
  10. La Flandre Wallonne aux 16e et 17e siшcle suivie... de notes historiques ... - Lebon - Google Livres. Books.google.fr. Retrieved 2013-01-08.
  11. Lode Wils. De lange weg van de naties in de Lage Landen, p.46. ISBN   90-5350-144-4
  12. E.H. Kossmann, De lage landen 1780/1980. Deel 1 1780-1914, 1986, Amsterdam, p. 128
  13. Jacques Logie, De la régionalisation à l'indépendance, 1830, Duculot, 1980, Paris-Gembloux, p. 21
  14. National minorities in Europe, W. Braumüller, 2003, page 20.
  15. Nederlandse en Vlaamse identiteit, Civis Mundi 2006 by S.W Couwenberg. ISBN   90-5573-688-0. Page 62. Quote: "Er valt heel wat te lachen om de wederwaardigheden van Vlamingen in Nederland en Nederlanders in Vlaanderen. Ze relativeren de verschillen en beklemtonen ze tegelijkertijd. Die verschillen zijn er onmiskenbaar: in taal, klank, kleur, stijl, gedrag, in politiek, maatschappelijke organisatie, maar het zijn stuk voor stuk varianten binnen één taal-en cultuurgemeenschap." The opposite opinion is stated by L. Beheydt (2002): "Al bij al lijkt een grondiger analyse van de taalsituatie en de taalattitude in Nederland en Vlaanderen weinig aanwijzingen te bieden voor een gezamenlijke culturele identiteit. Dat er ook op andere gebieden weinig aanleiding is voor een gezamenlijke culturele identiteit is al door Geert Hofstede geconstateerd in zijn vermaarde boek Allemaal andersdenkenden (1991)." L. Beheydt, "Delen Vlaanderen en Nederland een culturele identiteit?", in P. Gillaerts, H. van Belle, L. Ravier (eds.), Vlaamse identiteit: mythe én werkelijkheid (Leuven 2002), 22-40, esp. 38. ‹See Tfd› (in Dutch)
  16. Dutch Culture in a European Perspective: Accounting for the past, 1650-2000; by D. Fokkema, 2004, Assen.
  17. Languages in contact and conflict ... - Google Books. Books.google.com. 1995. ISBN   978-1-85359-278-2 . Retrieved 2010-08-27.
  18. G. Janssens and A. Marynissen, Het Nederlands vroeger en nu (Leuven/Voorburg 2005), 155 ff.
  19. Inquiry by 'Vepec', 'Vereniging voor Promotie en Communicatie' (Organisation for Promotion and Communication), published in Knack magazine 22 November 2006 p.14 [The Dutch language term 'gelovig' is in the text translated as 'religious'; more precisely it is a very common word for believing in particular in any kind of God in a monotheistic sense, and/or in some afterlife.
  20. ‹See Tfd› (in Dutch) Flemish Authorities - coat of arms Archived 2003-12-04 at the Wayback Machine De officiële voorstelling van het wapen van de Vlaamse Gemeenschap, in zwart - wit en in kleur, werd vastgesteld bij de ministeriële besluiten van 2 januari 1991 (BS 2 maart 1991), en zoals afgebeeld op de bijlagen bij deze besluiten. - flag Archived 2007-02-04 at the Wayback Machine
  21. Samples of the black lion without red tongue and claws for the province of East and West Flanders before the regionalization of Belgian provinces:Prof. Dr. J. Verschueren; Dr. W. Pée & Dr. A. Seeldraeyers (1 December 1997). Verschuerens Modern Woordenboek (6th revised ed.). N.V. Brepols, Turnhout. volume M–Z, plate "Wapenschilden" left of p. 1997. This dictionary/encyclopaedia was put on the list of school books allowed to be used in the official secondary institutions of education on March 8, 1933 by the Belgian government.
  22. Armorial des provinces et des communes de Belgique, Max Servais: pages 217-219, explaining the 1816 origin of the Flags of the provinces of East and West Flanders and their post 1830 modifications
  23. Flemish authorities show a logo of a highly stylized black lion either with red claws and tongue (sample: 'error' page by ministry of the Flemish Community) Archived 2005-04-06 at the Wayback Machine or a completely black version.
  24. Armorial des provinces et des communes de Belgique, Max Servais
  25. "Flanders (Belgium)". Flags of the World web site. 2006-12-02. Retrieved 2007-08-26.
  26. Velde, François R. (2000-04-01). "War-Cries" . Retrieved 2007-08-26.
  27. Olivier, M. (1995-06-13). "Voorstel van decreet houdende instelling van de Orde van de Vlaamse Leeuw (Vlaamse Raad, stuk 36, buitengewone zitting 1995 – Nr. 1)" (PDF) (in Dutch). Flemish Parliament. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-08-26.
  28. The Belgians In Canada, Cornelius J. Jaenen, 1991.
  29. "This migration resulted in a Flemish corridor stretching from Wallaceburg, through Chatham, up to Leamington."/"Flemish moved to a region stretching from Aylmer to Simcoe." The Netherlandic Presence in Ontario, Frans J. Schryer, 1998.
  30. "The most important Flemish settlement was located at the heart of the tobacco-growing region, within the London-Kitchener-Dunnville triangle."/"In the mid-1920’s, another important settlement developed around Sarnia on Lake Huron." The Flemish and Dutch Migrant Press in Canada: A Historical Investigation, Jennifer Vrielinck. Accessed August 3, 2019.
  31. "It (Haverfordwest) was probably the main area of Flemish settlement in Pembrokeshire." Haverfordwest Town Council. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  32. The Flemish colonists in Wales BBC. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  33. Fourteenth Century England - A Place Flemish Rebels Called 'Home' England's Immigrant's 1330-1550. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  34. The Establishment of Flemish Weavers in Manchester. AD 1363 The Victorian Web. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  35. "Remember our Flemish 'immigrant' ancestors who came to Bolton and established the spinning and weaving industry on which the town was subsequently built." The Bolton News. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  36. "Flemish weavers who settled in the area in the 14th Century helped to develop the woollen cottage industry." Community Rail Lancashire. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  37. "Settlement of Flemish Cloth Workers in Hartshead and Liversedge" Spen Valley, Past and Present by Frank Peel, 1893.
  38. "In the mid 1300’s, it is said that Flemish weavers settled in Bury, giving rise to the woollen industry in the town, and the reason for a sheep being depicted on the Coat of Arms." Lancashire Online Parish Clerks. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  39. "A considerable number of Flemish weavers settled in Halifax in the West Riding at the close of the fourteenth century and the beginning of the fifteenth century." Weaving in Yorkshire. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  40. "The cloth trade enjoyed a fillip when a considerable number of Flemish weavers settled in Halifax in the West Riding at the close of the fourteenth century." History of the Wool Industry in England, the Yorkshire West Riding and Pudsey & Halifax. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  41. "About 1340, Flemish weavers settled in this town" Some Field Family Journeys: Selected Descendants of Roger Del Feld by Warren James Field, 2011.
  42. Flemish Immigrants In South-East England During The Sixteeth and Early Seventeenth Centuries. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  43. "The weaving skills of Flemish immigrants brought a further boost to Braintree’s prosperity in the 16th century" A Brief History of Braintree. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  44. "From the early 1580s, the numbers of immigrants began to decline as many of the strangers returned to the Netherlands and one historian has estimated that the Flemish/Dutch population had dropped to just over a thousand by 1582. The likelihood, however, is that although numbers were decreasing the decline was not as great as this, and that numbers were nearer 1,600 to 2,000 in 1582." The Population of Sandwich From Elizabeth I To The Civil War. Accessed August 1, 2019."
  45. The Elizabethan Strangers. BBC. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  46. "Flemish weavers came and settled in North Walsham in the 13th and 14th centuries." Tour Norfolk. Accessed August 3, 2019.
  47. "By the fifteenth century a small community of weavers and farmers was established and it is believed that this was the origin of Whitefield" Bury Metropolitan Borough Council. Accessed August 1, 2019.
  48. "They (Flemish) tended to settle in a tightly packed strip of woods between Green Bay and Sturgeon Bay." Wisconsin Historical Society. Accessed August 3, 2019.
  49. The Flemish In Wisconsin, Jeanne and Les Rentmeester, 1985.

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Belgians are people identified with the Kingdom of Belgium, a federal state in Western Europe. As Belgium is a multinational state, this connection may be residential, legal, historical, or cultural rather than ethnic. The majority of Belgians, however, belong to two distinct ethnic groups or communities native to the country, i.e. its historical regions: Flemings in Flanders, who speak Dutch and Walloons in Wallonia who speak French or Walloon. There is also a substantial Belgian diaspora, which has settled primarily in the United States, Canada, France and Netherlands.

27th SS Volunteer Division <i>Langemarck</i> military unit

The Flemish Legion was a collaborationist military formation recruited among Dutch-speaking volunteers from German-occupied Belgium, notably from Flanders. It fought on the Eastern Front during World War II. The Flemish Legion was notionally an independent formation attached to the Waffen SS until May 1943 when it was disbanded and reformed as the SS-Sturmbrigade Langemarck within the Waffen SS itself. It was subsequently reorganised on several occasions and was officially designated as a division in September 1944, though the unit never expanded beyond brigade-strength.

East Flemish is a collective term for the two easternmost subdivisions of the so-called Flemish dialects, native to the southwest of the Dutch language area, which also include West Flemish. Their position between West Flemish and Brabantian has caused East Flemish dialects to be grouped with the latter as well. They are spoken mainly in the province of East Flanders and a narrow strip in the southeast of West Flanders in Belgium and eastern Zeelandic Flanders in the Netherlands. Even though the dialects of the Dender area are often discussed together with the East Flemish dialects because of their location, the latter are actually South Brabantian.

Dutch is a West Germanic language, that originated from the Old Frankish dialects.

Terminology of the Low Countries

The Low Countries is the coastal Rhine–Meuse–Scheldt delta region in Western Europe whose definition usually includes the modern countries of Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands. Both Belgium and the Netherlands derived their names from earlier names for the region, due to nether meaning "low" and Belgica being the Latinized name for all the Low Countries, a nomenclature that went obsolete after Belgium's secession in 1830.

Languages of Belgium languages of a geographic region

The Kingdom of Belgium has three official languages: Dutch, French, and German. A number of non-official, minority languages and dialects are spoken as well.

Partition of Belgium hypothetical split of the country into Wallonia and Flanders

The partition of Belgium is a hypothetical situation which has been discussed by both Belgian and international media envisioning a split of the country along linguistic divisions, with each of the Flemish Community (Flanders) and the French-speaking Community (Wallonia) either becoming independent states or, historically, joining the Netherlands and France, respectively. Both communities currently have a large degree of autonomy within the Belgian federation.

Coat of arms of Flanders

The Arms of the Flemish Community are: Or, a lion rampant sable, armed and langued gules. Although the lion has been in use for almost nine hundred years as the arms of the Count of Flanders, it only became the official symbol of the Flemish Community in 1973. At present its form and use is subject to the Decree of 7 November 1990.

Francization of Brussels

The Francization of Brussels refers to the evolution, over the past two centuries, of this historically Dutch-speaking city into one where French has become the majority language and lingua franca. The main cause of this transition was the rapid, yet compulsory assimilation of the Flemish population, amplified by immigration from France and Wallonia.

Dutch dialects are primarily the dialects that are both cognate with the Dutch language and are spoken in the same language area as the Dutch standard language. Dutch dialects are remarkably diverse and are found in the Netherlands and northern Belgium.

<i>The Lion of Flanders</i> (novel) 1838 historical fiction novel by Belgian writer Hendrik Conscience

The Lion of Flanders, or the Battle of the Golden Spurs is a major novel first published in 1838 by the Belgian writer Hendrik Conscience (1812–83). An early example of the historical fiction genre, the Lion of Flanders focuses on the medieval Franco-Flemish War and the Battle of the Golden Spurs of 1302 in particular. It is written in Conscience's typical stylistic romanticism and has been described as the "Flemish national epic".

Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Science and the Arts Flemish academy of sciences

Koninklijke Vlaamse Academie van België voor Wetenschappen en Kunsten or KVAB is an independent learned society of science and arts in Flanders in Belgium. The academy dates its origin back to 1772 when the Imperial and Royal Academy of Brussels was founded by empress Maria Theresia.

The Dutch language used in Belgium can also be referred to as Flemish Dutch (Vlaams-Nederlands), Belgian Dutch, or Southern Dutch (Zuid-Nederlands). Dutch is the mother tongue of about 60% of the population in Belgium, or by approximately 6.5 million people.(over 11 million inhabitants). It is the only official language in the Flemish Region (Flanders) and, in addition to French, the official language in Brussels. However, in the Brussels Capital Region and in the adjacent Flemish-Brabant municipalities, Dutch was largely displaced by French as an everyday language.