A weekend in…
FRENCH AND DUTCH FOR BEGINNERS
Although located above the Belgian language border (which separates the Dutch-speaking north from the Frenchspeaking south), Brussels is a bilingual city – on paper, at least. In practice, however, the street language is French and French only.
About half of the natives only speak French, compared to just five per cent who strictly speak Dutch only. The rest usually speak them both, or speak one of the many other languages spoken in the Belgian capital. The city is home to 180 different nationalities which speak around 104 different mother tongues, making it the second-most multi-cultural city in the world, after Dubai. Today, there are even more native English speakers than native Dutch speakers in Brussels. Yet, to integrate as well as possible: here is a brief glossary of both tongues. But beware, real ‘Bruxellois’ tend to switch from Dutch to French and back in one and the same sentence.
Au revoir Goodbye
Bon matin Good morning/afternoon Bonsoir Good evening
Comment ça va? How are you?
S’il vous plaît Please
Merci Thank you
Je ne parle pas Français. Parlez-vous Anglais? I don’t speak French. Do you speak English?
Peuvez-vous m’aider? Can you help me?
Ou est le/la …? Where can I find the
J’adore Bruxelles! I love Brussels!
Que pouvez-vous recommender? What would you recommend?
Une bière A beer
Un café A coffee
L’addition, s’il vous plaît. The bill, please.
Une banque A bank
La gare The railway station
L’hôpital A hospital
L’aéroport An airport
Spreekt u Nederlands?
Tot ziens Goodbye
Goedemorgen Good morning Goedemiddag Good afternoon Goedenavond Good evening
Hoe gaat het? How are you? Alstublieft Please
Dankuwel Thank you
Ik spreek geen Nederlands? Spreekt u Engels? I don’t speak French. Do you speak English?
Kan u mij helpen? Can you help me? Morgen Tomorrow
Waar is de/het… Where can I find the …?
Ik hou van Brussel! I love Brussels! Wat kan u me aanbevelen? What would you recommend?
Een pint A beer
Een koffie A coffee
De rekening, alstublieft. The bill, please.
Een bank A bank
Het station The railway station
Het ziekenhuis A hospital
De luchthaven An airport