|Languages of Netherlands|
|Regional|| West Frisian (2.50%), English (BES Islands), Papiamento (Bonaire); |
Dutch Low Saxon (10.9%) Limburgish (4.50%)
|Immigrant||Indonesian (2%), Varieties of Arabic (1.5%), Turkish (1.5%), Berber languages (1%), Polish (1%) See further: Immigration to the Netherlands|
|Foreign|| English (89%) (excluding the BES Islands) |
German (71%), French (29%), Spanish (5%)
|Signed||Dutch Sign Language|
|Life in the Netherlands|
|This article is a part of a series on|
|Dutch Low Saxon dialects|
|West Low Franconian dialects|
|East Low Franconian dialects|
The official language of the Netherlands is Dutch, spoken by almost all people in the Netherlands. Dutch is also spoken and official in Aruba, Bonaire, Belgium, Curaçao, Saba, Sint Eustatius, Sint Maarten and Suriname. It is a West Germanic, Low Franconian language that originated in the Early Middle Ages (c. 470) and was standardised in the 16th century.
There are also some recognised provincial languages and regional dialects.
However, both Low Saxon and Limburgish spread across the Dutch-German border and belong to a common Dutch-German dialect continuum.
The Netherlands also has its separate Dutch Sign Language, called Nederlandse Gebarentaal (NGT). It is still waiting for recognition and has 17,500 users.
There is a trend of learning foreign languages in the Netherlands: between 90%and 93% of the total population are able to converse in English, 71% in German, 29% in French and 5% in Spanish.
West Frisian is an official language in the Dutch province of Friesland (Fryslân in West Frisian). The government of the Frisian province is bilingual. Since 1996 West Frisian has been recognised as an official minority language in the Netherlands under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages, although it had been recognised by the Dutch government as the second state language (tweede rijkstaal), with official status in Friesland, since the 1950s.
Note that Ripuarian is not recognised as a regional language of the Netherlands.
Luxembourgish is divided into Moselle Luxembourgish, West Luxembourgish, East Luxembourgish, North Luxembourgish and City Luxembourgish.[ citation needed ] The Oïl dialects in the Benelux are Walloon (divided into West Walloon, Central Walloon, East Walloon and South Walloon), Lorrain (including Gaumais), Champenois and Picard (including Tournaisis).
West Low German, also known as Low Saxon is a group of Low German dialects spoken in parts of the Netherlands, northwestern Germany and southern Denmark. It is one of two groups of mutually intelligible dialects, the other being East Low German dialects. A 2005 study found that there were approximately 1.8 million "daily speakers" of Low Saxon in the Netherlands.
Low German or Low Saxon is a West Germanic language spoken mainly in Northern Germany and the northeastern part of the Netherlands. It is also spoken to a lesser extent in the German diaspora worldwide.
Limburgish, also called Limburgan, Limburgian, or Limburgic, is a group of East Low Franconian varieties spoken in the Belgian and Dutch provinces both named Limburg and some neighbouring areas of Germany. In some parts of this area it is generally used as the colloquial language in daily speech.
Dutch people or the Dutch are a Germanic ethnic group and nation native to the Netherlands. They share a common ancestry, 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.
Hollandic or Hollandish is the most widely spoken dialect of the Dutch language. Other important Low Franconian language varieties spoken are together with Brabantian, Flemish, Zeelandic and Limburgish.
Brabantian or Brabantish, also Brabantic or Brabantine, is a dialect group of the Dutch language. It is named after the historical Duchy of Brabant, which corresponded mainly to the Dutch province of North Brabant, the Belgian provinces of Antwerp and Flemish Brabant as well as the Brussels-Capital Region and the province of Walloon Brabant. Brabantian expands into small parts in the west of Limburg, and its strong influence on the Flemish dialects in East Flanders weakens toward the west. In a small area in the northwest of North Brabant (Willemstad), Hollandic is spoken. Conventionally, the South Guelderish dialects are distinguished from Brabantian but for no objective reason other than geography.
Dutch Low Saxon are the Low Saxon dialects that are spoken in the northeastern Netherlands and are written there with local, unstandardised orthographies based on Standard Dutch orthography. The UNESCO Atlas of endangered languages lists the language as vulnerable. The percentage of speakers among parents dropped from 34% in 1995 to 15% in 2011. The percentage of speakers among their children dropped from 8% to 2% in the same period.
Dutch is a West Germanic language, that originated from the Old Frankish dialects.
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.
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.
Oost-Veluws is one of the main dialects of Veluws and is therefore related to West-Veluws and Sallaans. It is spoken in the Dutch province Gelderland. However, it is quite rare to come across a native speaker of "Oost-Veluws", as few people actually still speak this dialect.
English in the Netherlands, according to research, can be spoken by 90% to 93% of the Dutch population. According to some, the main reasons for the high degree of English speakers is the country's small size, dependency on international trade, and the use of subtitles for foreign languages on television, rather than audio dubbing. Dutch's genealogical proximity to English is also noted as a significant factor since both languages are closely-related West Germanic languages. Occupations to that require a complex knowledge of English, such as those in aviation and the sciences, are also abundant in the Netherlands. Furthermore, it is an official and the majority language in the Caribbean municipalities of Saba and Sint Eustatius.
The Caribbean Netherlands are the three special municipalities of the Netherlands that are located in the Caribbean Sea. They consist of the islands of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, although the term "Caribbean Netherlands" is sometimes used to refer to all of the islands in the Dutch Caribbean. In legislation, the three islands are also known as the BES islands. The islands are currently classified as public bodies in the Netherlands and as overseas countries and territories of the European Union; thus, EU law does not automatically apply.
The Identity card BES is a uniform identity card for residents in the Caribbean Netherlands introduced upon the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles in 2010. The cards are machine-readable and have the size of a credit card. The front contains the words Identiteitskaart followed by the island names Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba. The card also contains the coat of arms of the island of issue.
The Dutch Caribbean are the territories, colonies, and countries, both former and current, of the Dutch Empire and the Kingdom of the Netherlands that are located in the Lesser Antilles archipelago of the Caribbean Sea.
Flemish (Vlaams) also called Flemish Dutch, Belgian Dutch, or Southern Dutch is a Low Franconian dialect cluster of the Dutch language, as spoken in Flanders, a historical region in northern Belgium, by Flemings, the dominant ethnic group of the region. Along with Flanders, it is also spoken to some extent in French Flanders and the Dutch Zeelandic Flanders by approximately 6.5 million people.
East Brabantian is one of the main divisions of the Brabantian dialect groups which the Woordenboek van de Brabantse Dialecten recognizes. East Brabantian dialects are mainly spoken in the eastern part of the province of North Brabant. In the classifications of Brabantian is recognized it as a separate dialect group. Sometimes it is called Meierijs, after the Bailiwick of Den Bosch.
Same-sex marriage in Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba is legal, following the entry into force of a law enabling same-sex couples to marry on 10 October 2012. The change to the Civil Code of the Caribbean Netherlands was proposed by the Dutch House of Representatives rather than the Rutte Government which preferred to negotiate the change with the islands first. The issue was very controversial on the island of Sint Eustatius, with many Christian islanders opposing the principle of the law and because of the perceived "neocolonialism" of the Netherlands imposing such a law on its overseas municipalities.
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights in Sint Eustatius are quite progressive by Caribbean standards. Sint Eustatius forms part of the Caribbean Netherlands and is a special municipalitiy of the Netherlands. Both male and female same-sex sexual activity are legal in Sint Eustatius, with same-sex marriage and adoption being legal since 2012. In addition, discrimination on the basis of "heterosexual and homosexual orientation" is outlawed.