#26: Belgium, the history in a nutshell

In this episode we’re talking about Belgium. The country is connected to the southern part of our country and once was part of our little nation. But since they declared independence this is no longer the case. In this episode I’ll highlight the history and next time we’ll talk about the culture somewhat. Please be aware that the language may be somewhat harder than other episodes, but hey we’re on a learning experience here! Read along with the podcast and you’ll be just fine!

  • Until the 15th Century Belgium was owned by Celtic tribes | Tot de vijftiende eeuw was Belgium het eigendom van Keltische stammen;
  • The country as we know it now was then devided among the French and the German Empire | Het land, zoals we dat nu kennen, werd toen verdeeld tussen het Franse en het Germaanse Rijk;
  • The Schelde river devided the two parts | De rivier de Schelde scheidde de twee gedeelten;
  • Through the reign of the Habsburger family the northern part became part of the Netherlands | Door de heerschappij van de familie Habsburg werd het noordelijk gedeelte onderdeel van de Nederlanden;
  • After Napoleon’s defeat the country became part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands | Nadat Napoleon verslagen was, werd het land onderdeel van het Koninkrijk der Nederlanden;
  • A buffer against the French | Een bufferzone tegen de fransen;
  • But that only lasted from 1815 through 1830 when Belgium declared their own independence | Maar dat duurde slechts van 1815 tot 1830, toen België de onafhankelijkheid uitriep;
  • Still a large part of the Belgians speak Dutch, although it differs in accent and some words | Nog altijd spreekt een groot gedeelte van de Belgen Nederlands, ofschoon het verschilt in accent en sommige woorden anders zijn;
  • De language is officially called Flamish | De taal heet formeel Vlaams;
  • But the Flamish speaking citizen will understand Dutch | Maar de Vlaams-sprekende burger zal Nederlands verstaan;
  • Now you know why Belgium is a nation with three languages: French, Flamish and German | Nu weet u waarom België een land met drie talen is: Frans, Vlaams en Duits;
  • Please realize that the spoken language is a sensitive subject in Beglium | Besef alstublieft dat de gesproken taal een gevoelig onderwerp in België is.

5 thoughts on “#26: Belgium, the history in a nutshell”

  1. Hi, I stumbled onto your site while looking for a podcast that teaches Dutch. I’m very happy to have found you. Dank u voor een mooi project.
    Your Belgian history in a nutshell podcast is my first “Laura speaks Dutch” experience, and I have some questions as to your brief history of Belgium.
    What Celtic tribes ruled Belgium until the 15th century? May I suggest you check out wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgium), maybe Eupedia (www.eupedia.com/europe/frankish_influence_modern_europe.shtml#Belgium) , or even Expatica (http://www.expatica.com/actual/article.asp?subchannel_id=49&story_id=448)
    for slightly more accurate introductions to Belgian history. You might be surprised!
    I think it is also important to point out that Flemish is not the official name of the Dutch spoken in Belgium. The official languages are Dutch, French, and German. The Dutch spoken in Belgium is often referred to as Flemish, but officially is called Dutch.
    I understand you’re condensing Belgium’s history in a 15 minute podcast, but Belgium ruled by celtic tribes until the 15th century?
    Still, it’s great to have found a source to study Dutch.

  2. Hey Luc,

    Thanks for the update. Actually I got the info from Wikipedia in this case and it is exactly as I said. But hey you never ever can do just to a whole nation in just a couple of sentences so we always fall short here. It is just a quick and simple overview. I hope you can value that. But thanks for the response!



  3. Hi!!! I´ve been following all the episodes since the first one. I´d like to suggest something more about Grammar, this word everyone HATES… but it´s important to keep control of language development… You see, as far as I remember, we saw just on episode 10 (?) about the verb ZIJN… No more… I do appreciate the way you speak, try to be a facilitator, and not a teacher. Thanks. But I think we should focate more on day-by-day issues, like trivial things, supermarket, names of vegetables…
    Well, anyhow, congratulations. You do an excellent job… I liked the original track sound from birds in one episode.
    I live in Brazil and speak fluent German. I don´t think Dutch is so different from German… It´s so similiar in some parts… The pronunciation is terrible. But I try to do my best…

    I live in Brazil, where there´s a dutch Community where they try to speak only in Dutch. It´s fantastic…

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