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Common Dutch Words

A list of the most common Dutch words ordered by their frequency of use. You can use this list to learn words efficiently, ensuring you cover the basic vocabulary of Dutch.

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Rank Word Root Meanings
1 de 1. art. the (definite article, masculine and feminine gender)
     De man — “The man”
     De vrouw — “The woman”
     Het boek — “The book”
     De boeken — “The books”
2 van 1. prep. of (possession, property)
     de hoed van het meisje - the hat of the girl
     het gewicht van een olifant - the weight of an elephant
2. prep. of (general association)
     Zij was van adel. - She was of noble stock.
3 een 1. art. (indefinite) Placed before a singular noun, indicating a general case of a person or thing: a, an. Compare with de and het.
2. num. (cardinal) one
4 het 1. art. the (the neuter definite article)
     het boek
       the book
     het meisje
       the girl
5 en 1. conj. and
     De oude man en de zee.
       The Old Man and the Sea.
2. conj. well, so
     En, hoe gaat het ermee?
6 in 1. adv. in, inside
2. adv. (postpositional) into
     De jongen rende het huis in.
       The boy ran into the house.
3. prep. in; expressing containment.
7 is 1. v. third-person singular present of zijn; is, equals
     Twaalf min drie is negen — twelve minus three equals nine
2. adv. (informal dialect) (misspelling of es)
8 dat 1. det. that (neuter); referring to a thing or a person further away.
     dat huis
       that house
     dat kind
       that child
9 op 1. adv. up
     De bal stuiterde op en neer.
       The ball bounced up and down.
2. adv. (postpositional) onto, up onto
     De kat klom gisteren het dak op.
10 te 1. adv. indicating excess: too
     Te veel is nooit goed - too much is never good
     te gek! - far out!
2. prep. (modifying an infinitive verb) to
     Er is iets te eten - there is something to eat
11 zijn 1. v. (intransitive) To be, to exist.
     Zijn of niet zijn, dat is de vraag. - To be or not to be, that is the question.
     Was je er afgelopen zaterdag ook? - Were you there too last Saturday?
2. v. (transitive copular) Used to connect a noun to an adjective that describes it.
     De bal is rond. - The ball is round.
12 voor 1. prep. for
2. prep. before
3. prep. in front of
4. n. pro, advantage
     Hij overwoog het voor en tegen.
13 met 1. prep. with, along with (another person)
2. prep. with, using (a tool, instrument or other means)
3. prep. at, for, during (a holiday/festivity)
     Heb je zin om met kerst bij ons langs te komen?, Do you fancy visiting us for Christmas?
14 die 1. det. that (masculine, feminine); referring to a thing or a person further away.
     die boom
       that tree
     die vrouw
       that woman
15 niet 1. adv. Not, no: used to express negation.
     Niet storen! - Do not disturb!
     Dat is niet waar. - That is not true.
2. n. A staple.
3. v. first-, second- and third-person singular present indicative of nieten
16 aan 1. prep. on
2. prep. to
3. adv. on
4. adj. on (functional, operational)
17 er 1. adv. there (unspecific to distance)
2. adv. (with a preposition) him, her, it, them.
     Ik heb ermee gewerkt.
       I have worked with it/them.
     Je kunt er de bergen boven zien.
18 om 1. prep. around, about
2. prep. at (a time)
3. adv. around, about
4. adv. around, over (to another state)
     Hij zette de schakelaar om.
19 ook 1. adv. also, too, moreover
     Dat kan ik ook. – I can do that too.
2. adv. (in negative sentences) either
     Ik kan dat ook niet. – I can't do that either.
3. adv. -ever
20 als 1. conj. (subordinating) if, when
     Als je die knop indrukt, gaat de computer uit.
       If you push that button, the computer will turn off.
2. conj. when, as soon as
     Als het regent worden alle daken nat.
21 dan 1. adv. then, at that time (in the future)
     Morgen wordt het beter weer, maar dan moet ik weer naar mijn werk.
       Tomorrow the weather will be better, but then I must go to work again.
2. adv. then, after that
     Eerst moet je je tanden poetsen, dan mag je naar bed.
22 maar 1. adv. only, just
     Het was maar een vraag! / Het is maar een kwestie van tijd!
       It was only a question! / It is only a question of time!
2. adv. as long as; only
3. adv. just; a modal particle indicating a certain degree of indifference towards the result.
23 bij 1. prep. at, with
     Bij ons is het altijd feest.
       With us it's always a party.
2. prep. by, close to
     Ik woon in een hutje bij de zee.
24 of 1. conj. (coordinating) or
     Wil je thee, of heb je liever koffie?
       Do you want tea, or would you prefer coffee?
2. conj. (subordinating) whether, if
     Ik weet niet of dat wel zo'n goed idee is.
25 uit 1. adv. out, from the inside to the outside
2. adv. out, off (to an extinguished or switched-off state)
     Het vuur is uit.
       The fire is out.
     De televisie is uit.
26 nog 1. adv. still, as before
     Nu is de auto nog mooi en schoon, maar na een paar jaar niet meer. - Now the car is still nice and clean, but after a few years it won't be anymore.
     Ik heb nog genoeg aardappelen, ik heb niet meer nodig. - I still have enough potatoes, I don't need more.
2. adv. (in negative phrases) yet
     Hij is nog niet gekomen. - He has not come yet.
27 worden 1. v. (copulative) to become
     Zij wilde altijd al lerares worden. — She always wanted to become a teacher.
2. v. (transitive auxiliary) Used to form the imperfect tense of the passive voice, together with a past participle.
     Ze worden gered. — They are being saved.
     De muur werd geschilderd. — The wall was being painted.
28 door 1. adv. through
2. adv. forward, on
     Ondanks slecht weer ging het feest toch door.
       Despite bad weather, the party went on anyway.
3. adv. (postpositional) through (implying motion)
29 naar 1. prep. to, towards in time, space, consequence, purpose etc.
2. adj. nasty, scary
3. adj. unpleasant, sickening
30 heeft 1. v. third-person singular present of hebben; has.
2. v. second-person (u) singular present of hebben; have.
Dictionary entries from Wiktionary