Dutch dying out? A quarter of people in the Netherlands don’t speak the language at home

We prattle a lot about how great the Dutch are at English, but apparently, it’s not the only language they seem to be speaking around the dinner table. Statistics Netherlands reports that almost a quarter of over 15s speak a language other than Dutch at home.

It turns out residents in the Netherlands are a multi-lingual bunch. These other languages include dialects or regional languages, such as Frisian or Limburgish, but also other languages such as English, Turkish, or Polish.

10% speak regional languages

The Dutch government recognises three main regional languages: Frisian, Low Saxon, and Limburgish. According to the report, one in ten over 15s speaks one of these regional languages over the national language.

Over 5% of this age group speak Dutch dialects and more than 8% favour a different national language at home.

It’s regional, baby

When it comes to languages in the Netherlands, it’s different strokes for different folks. Different provinces vary greatly when it comes to which languages are spoken at home.

Frisland and Limburg speak the least Dutch of any region, 46% and 50.2% respectively. In Flevoland and North and South Holland, over 10% of residents speak a language other than Dutch (or Dutch dialects) at home.

That’s not so surprising with the number of internationals living and working in the big cities like Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and The Hague.

READ MORE | Do I need to speak Dutch to work in the Netherlands?

The study also found a correlation between the level of education and the likelihood of speaking a regional language. The higher your education, the less likely you will speak a regional language at home.

Are you surprised by these stats? What language do mostly you speak at home? Tell us in the comments!

Feature Image: Mikos/Depositphotos

Chloe Lovatt 🇬🇧
Chloe Lovatt 🇬🇧http://globeshuffler.wordpress.com
A British native, Chloe has a love for other languages and cultures, having lived in Spain before moving to the Netherlands. She is keen to explore the Dutch landscape, cultural spots and — the most important — food! After being here for a few months she already has developed a mild addiction to kibbeling.



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