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[a map of the present-day Netherlands]
(1975) - print version

Hear many more names of towns and cities etc. in Holland and Belgium

Maps Overview - 300 AD CE - 1000 AD CE - 1650 AD CE - 1900 AD CE - at present

Low and High Ground - 20th Century Land Reclamation* - The Delta Protection Works*
* - with names spoken

Maps and Names from Operation Market Garden ('The Bridge too Far')
The Netherlands in The World - The Netherlands in Europe - Dutch Names for Foreign Lands

Amsterdam is the capital of The Netherlands, but The Hague is the seat of government. The houses of parliament (where the elected representatives have their meetings) and almost all government departments and embassies are in The Hague. See also: Conversation Subjects: Politics
Dutchmen usually call The Hague "Den Haag," but the full, official name is " 's-Gravenhage " (The Count's Hedge, i.e. piece of land enclosed by a hedge; this count is the count of Holland, and now that I've mentioned it, this 'Holland' is in the Dutch sense of the word: only the present provinces of Noord- and Zuid-Holland.)
In pronouncing the full name, the 'G' is usually left out (in analogy with CH of SCHR - see Dutch Pronunciation Rules); it may be hypercorrect to pronounce this G.
Similarly, the capital of the province of Noord-Brabant is usually called "Den Bosch," but the full, official name is " 's-Hertogenbosch " (The Duke's Forest.) The H is always dropped, it's almost impossible for a Dutchman to say that H.
(The " 's (apostrophe-s)" in these words is the possessive.)

Den Haag
's-Gravenhage
hear
's-Gravenhage
hear
(unusual, G not dropped)
Den Bosch
's-Hertogenbosch
hear - 2
Countries
Nederland
België
Duitsland
Engeland
hear

Rivers 1
De Rijn
De Waal
De IJssel
hear

Provinces
Groningen
Friesland
Drente
Overijssel
hear

Flevoland
Gelderland
Utrecht
Noord-Holland
hear

Zuid-Holland
Zeeland
Noord-Brabant
Limburg
hear

Cities
Den Bosch
Breda
Tilburg
Eindhoven
Maastricht more
hear

Hear more names

Land Reclamation


Seas and Lakes
De Noordzee
De Waddenzee
Het IJsselmeer
De Zuiderzee *
hear

Rivers 2
De Lek
De Maas
De Schelde
hear

Cities
Groningen
Leeuwarden
Assen
Zwolle
Enschede
hear

Apeldoorn
Arnhem
Nijmegen
Utrecht
hear

Amsterdam more
Haarlem
Zaanstad
hear

Den Haag
Leiden
Rotterdam
Dordrecht
Middelburg
hear

Belgian Cities Shown
Brussel
Antwerpen
Gent
hear

Speaking Dutch, we rarely use the word 'Holland' click to hear for our country. We almost always say 'Nederland' click to hear.
At independence (1648) the new country called itself "The Republic of The (Seven) United Provinces." The seven were: Groningen click to hear (Old name: Stad en Lande click to hear 2 'town and country') - Friesland click to hear 2 - Overijssel click to hear - Gelderland click to hear - Utrecht click to hear 2 - Holland click to hear and Zeeland click to hear 2. Poor and sparsely populated Drente click to hear and the Roman Catholic southern provinces of Noord-Brabant click to hear 2 and Limburg click to hear were a kind of territories without self-rule. Flevoland click to hear 2 is a new province of most of the reclaimed land in Lake IJssel, and the province of 'Holland' click to hear was split in Noord Holland click to hear 2 and Zuid Holland click to hear 2.
Before Lake IJssel ('het IJsselmeer' click to hear) was closed off from the sea in 1932, it was called '(de) Zuiderzee' click to hear 2 ("Southern Sea,") in English often written as "Zuider Zee" or "Zuyder Zee."
We call the neighbors to the right Duitsers click to hear ('Germans,') singular: Duitser click to hear ('German,') their language or the adjective is Duits click to hear ('German') and their country Duitsland click to hear ('Germany.') This leaves Dutch with the word Germanen click to hear for the members of the Germanic tribes of old; in Dutch 'Indo-European' is usually Indogermaans click to hear.

Map by Marco Schuffelen, after 'Kleine Geografie van Nederland,' Published by 'Het Ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken' (State Department), The Hague, Holland 1983

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