KINboat - Blog - Dutch

Top 10 Amsterdam language!

When visiting Amsterdam, a short lesson in the Amsterdam language should not be missed. Where the dialect of the Dutch language used to be only spoken by the working class of Amsterdam it is used today widely distributed among all layers of the population.
Due to the fact that many Jews used to live in Amsterdam, the Amsterdam language has a large number of Yiddish (common language of Jews in northern and eastern Europe) and Bargoenian words. Unfortunately, Amsterdam, like any other big city, nowadays has to do with the disappearance of traditional language and the following words will be heard less and less on the streets.

1) Mokum

Mokum - The word "Mokum" means the city of Amsterdam.
However, the word Mokum comes from the Hebrew word "makom", meaning place.
Example: "He lives in Mokum."

Mokum - Amsterdam

2) Lazarus

Lazarus - The word "Lazarus" means that someone is drunk.
Lazarus is also often spoken and written as lazerus.
Example: "That man has drunk all night, he is completely lazarus."

Lazarus - Amsterdam

3) Porem

Porem - The word "porem" refers to a person's face.
However, the term "no porum" means that something does not look good.
Example: "I really do not think that painting is porum."

Porem - Amsterdam

4) Bazelen

Bazelen - With the word "bazelen" is meant that someone is whining or
telling nonsense.

Bazelen - Amsterdam

5) Optiefen.

Optiefen - The word "optiefen" means that someone is not wanted anywhere.
Optiefen is said when someone should go away.
Example: "I find him annoying, he must "optiefen"!"

Optiefen - Amsterdam

6) Ouwenelen.

Ouwenelen - The word "ouwenelen" means talking.
However, in contrast to "bazelen", ouwenelen is used in a positive way.
Example: "They've been "ouwenelen" around for hours!"

Ouwenelen - Amsterdam

7) Gladjanus.

Gladjanus - The word "gladjanus" means a creep on a person who can not be trusted.
A gladjanus is often also called a gladjakker.
Example: "That man is not to be trusted, he is really a gladjanus!"

Gladjanus - Amsterdam

8) Ballen.

Ballen - The word "ballen" means money.
For example: "This bike costs 100 ballen (100 euro)."

Ballen - Amsterdam

9) Bikken.

Bikken - The word "bikken" means eating.
For example: "It's time for bikken."

Bikken - Amsterdam

10) Knijpen.

Knijpen - The word "Knijpen" means that someone is afraid.
For example: "Hij knijpt hem: He is afraid".

Knijpen - Amsterdam


Did you like this blog and found it interesting? Do you want to stay informed of events, activities or sights and excursions in Amsterdam and its surroundings? Stay tuned of our blogs. Once a week, on Tuesday we will post a new Blog. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram and keep an eye on our blog. The next blog will be about the top 10 Rooftops in Amsterdam!