Dutch


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Related to Dutch: Danish

beat all

To be beyond the bounds of imagination or belief, as in a surprising, shocking, or amazing occurrence. Well that beats all! I wasn't expecting to have you here for Christmas!
See also: all, beat

beat the Dutch

obsolete To surpass expectation, imagination, or belief. Primarily heard in US, South Africa. Look at the fanfare, the fireworks, the massive crowd! This celebration truly beats the Dutch!
See also: beat, Dutch

Dutch act

1. The act of committing suicide. The disparaging use of the word "Dutch" is a reference to the fierce rivalry between England and the Dutch in the 17th century. After her daughter died, we were worried that Mary might be tempted to do the Dutch act.
2. The act of deserting or fleeing from something, especially military duty. (See above for origin.) Robert is likely to be court-martialed for doing the Dutch act while on active duty in Iraq.
See also: act, Dutch

Dutch reckoning

obsolete A bill or other account of charges that is not itemized or detailed in any way and that is usually irregularly high. The disparaging use of the word "Dutch" is a reference to the fierce rivalry between England and the Dutch in the 17th century. At the end of our stay in the country hotel, we were a little nonplussed at the Dutch reckoning with which we were presented by the concierge.
See also: Dutch, reckoning

get (one's) Dutch up

To make one angry. Please calm down, I didn't mean to get your Dutch up. This whole situation gets my Dutch up so much—it's amazing that I haven't screamed at the whole staff today.
See also: Dutch, get, up

Dutch treat

A situation in which two people agree to split the cost of something or pay for their own share, usually a meal. Since Bob and Sue were just friends, neither ever objected to a Dutch treat when they went out to dinner.
See also: Dutch, treat

my old dutch

My spouse. Taken from the 19th-century Albert Chevalier song "My Old Dutch." Primarily heard in UK. Sure, my old dutch and I have had our problems, but we always work it out.
See also: Dutch, old

the Dutch have taken Holland

A sarcastic phrase said in response to outdated news. A: "Did you know that Kelly is getting a divorce?" B: "Oh please, that happened months ago. Did you know that the Dutch have taken Holland?"
See also: Dutch, have, taken

double Dutch

1. Indecipherable or nonsense speech. I'm not a programmer, so I have no idea what they're saying in there—it all sounds like double Dutch to me. When you teach preschoolers, you get used to hearing double Dutch all day.
2. A style of jumping rope in which two ropes are swung at the same time in opposite directions. I'm pretty good at jumping rope, but I always get tangled up when I try double Dutch.
See also: double, Dutch

Dutch auction

An auction in which the asking price is set high and then lowered until someone buys the item. What is this, a Dutch auction? Why is the auctioneer starting out at $1,000 for that piece of junk?
See also: auction, Dutch

Dutch courage

1. Liquor. Come down to the bar and join us in drinking some Dutch courage!
2. The false sense of confidence induced by alcohol consumption. Joe gets into a lot of fights when he drinks, and I suspect that Dutch courage is to blame.
3. Drugs. You didn't bring any Dutch courage? Man, I need to get high tonight!
See also: courage, Dutch

Dutch uncle

One who addresses someone severely or critically. Fred is always lecturing me like a Dutch uncle, forgetting the fact that I'm 40 years old!
See also: Dutch, uncle

double Dutch

 
1. language or speech that is difficult or impossible to understand. This book on English grammar is written in double Dutch. I can't understand a word. Try to find a lecturer who speaks slowly, not one who speaks double Dutch.
2. a game of jumping rope using two ropes swung simultaneously in opposite directions. The girls were playing double Dutch in the schoolyard.
See also: double, Dutch

Dutch auction

an auction or sale that starts off with a high asking price that is then reduced until a buyer is found. (Viewed by some as insulting to the Dutch.) Dutch auctions are rare—most auctioneers start with a lower price than they hope to obtain. My real estate agent advised me to ask a reasonable price for my house rather than get involved with a Dutch auction.
See also: auction, Dutch

Dutch courage

unusual or artificial courage arising from the influence of alcohol. (Viewed by some as insulting to the Dutch.) It was Dutch courage that made the football fan attack the policeman. It will take a bit of Dutch courage to make an after-dinner speech.
See also: courage, Dutch

Dutch treat

a social occasion where one pays for oneself. (Viewed by some as insulting to the Dutch.) "It's nice of you to ask me out to dinner," she said, "but could we make it a Dutch treat?" The office outing is always a Dutch treat.
See also: Dutch, treat

Dutch uncle

a man who gives frank and direct advice to someone. (In the way an uncle might, but not a real relative.) I would not have to lecture you like a Dutch uncle if you were not so extravagant. He acts more like a Dutch uncle than a husband. He's forever telling her what to do in public.
See also: Dutch, uncle

go Dutch

[for each person in a pair or a group] to pay for himself or herself. I don't want you to pay for my ticket. Let's go Dutch. Is it still considered a date if you go Dutch?
See also: Dutch

*in Dutch (with someone)

in trouble with someone. (*Typically: be ~; get ~.) I'm in Dutch with my parents for my low grades. You're in Dutch quite often, it seems.
See also: Dutch

talk to someone

 
1. Lit. to speak to someone; to confer with someone. Talk to me! I really want your opinion. I will have to talk to Mark to see what he thinks.
2. Fig. to lecture to someone; to reprimand someone. I wish you would talk to your son. He is creating havoc in the classroom. I am going to have to talk to Roberta. She is not getting things clean.
See also: talk

beat all

Surpass anything, especially in a strange or amazing way, as in Adam and his cousin Eve eloped-doesn't that beat all! This phrase appears to have replaced beat the Dutch. It is often used in a negative construction, as in the example. [Slang; first half of 1800s] Also see to beat the band.
See also: all, beat

beat the Dutch

see under beat all.
See also: beat, Dutch

double Dutch

1. Language that cannot be understood, gibberish, as in They might have been speaking double Dutch, for all I understood. This usage dates from the 1870s (an earlier version, however, had it as high Dutch) and is heard less often today than the synonym double talk.
2. A game of jump rope in which players jump over two ropes swung in a crisscross fashion.
See also: double, Dutch

Dutch courage

False courage acquired by drinking liquor, as in He had a quick drink to give him Dutch courage. This idiom alludes to the reputed heavy drinking of the Dutch, and was first referred to in Edmund Waller's Instructions to a Painter (1665): "The Dutch their wine, and all their brandy lose, Disarm'd of that from which their courage grows."
See also: courage, Dutch

Dutch treat

An outing or date in which each person pays his or her own expenses. For example, Her parents agreed that she might date if it were a Dutch treat. The related expression go Dutch means "to go on a date with each person paying their own way," as in Students often elect to go Dutch. The first term dates from about 1870, and the variant from the early 1900s.
See also: Dutch, treat

Dutch uncle

A stern, candid critic or adviser, as in When I got in trouble with the teacher again, the principal talked to me like a Dutch uncle . This expression, often put as talk to one like a Dutch uncle, presumably alludes to the sternness and sobriety attributed to the Dutch. [Early 1800s]
See also: Dutch, uncle

go Dutch

see under Dutch treat.
See also: Dutch

in Dutch

In trouble or disfavor, as in If I don't finish on time I'll really be in Dutch. This expression may allude to the stern reprimands of a Dutch uncle. [Slang; c. 1850]
See also: Dutch

talk to

Also, give a talking to. Scold, reprimand, as in The teacher said he'd have to talk to Jeff after school, or Dad gave us both a good talking to. [Colloquial; second half of 1800s] For talk to like a Dutch uncle, see Dutch uncle.
See also: talk

Dutch courage

mainly BRITISH
If you talk about Dutch courage, you mean the feeling of bravery and confidence in yourself that results from drinking alcohol. The survey also noted how some performers used a little Dutch courage to overcome inhibitions. Sometimes before leaving I would drink a glass of vodka on the stairs for Dutch courage. Note: In the past, the Dutch had a reputation for drinking a lot of alcohol.
See also: courage, Dutch

go Dutch

BRITISH, OLD-FASHIONED
If two or more people go Dutch, they share the cost of the bill for something such as a meal or an evening out. We went Dutch on a cheap Chinese in Shaftesbury Avenue. Many women are happy to go Dutch with a new boyfriend on the first date. Note: You can also say that you have a Dutch treat. He wanted to pay the bill, but I objected and we settled on a Dutch treat.
See also: Dutch

in Dutch

AMERICAN, OLD-FASHIONED
If you are in Dutch, you are in trouble. Maybe he was in Dutch again and this time they offered him the chance of paying his debt by chasing me out of town. Doug wants to get Manatelli in Dutch with his boss.
See also: Dutch

the Dutch act

and the Dutch cure
n. suicide. Well, Ken took the Dutch cure last week. So sad. It was the Dutch act. He ate his gun.
See also: act, Dutch

the Dutch cure

verb
See also: cure, Dutch

Dutch courage

1. n. liquor; false courage from drinking liquor. A couple of shots of Dutch courage, and he was ready to face anything.
2. n. drugs. Max deals in Dutch courage, as he calls it.
See also: courage, Dutch

go Dutch

in. [for two people] to split the cost of something, such as a meal. (see also Dutch treat.) How about dinner tonight? We’ll go Dutch, okay?
See also: Dutch

in Dutch

mod. in trouble. I didn’t want to get in Dutch with you.
See also: Dutch

beat all

To be impressive or amazing. Often used in negative conditional constructions: If that doesn't beat all!
See also: all, beat

go Dutch

To pay one's own expenses on a date or outing.
See also: Dutch

in Dutch

In disfavor or trouble.
See also: Dutch

Dutch courage

Bravery acquired by drinking alcohol. Political and economic rivals during the 17th century, England and Holland fought a series of wars. English propagandists spread the rumor that Dutch soldiers and sailors developed the necessary nerve to fight only after drinking gin and other alcoholic beverages. The Dutch haven't fared well in the English language. Other unflattering phrases are “Dutch treat (you pay for only yourself), “Dutch uncle” (a stern person, especially one who gave you a lecture you weren't happy about receiving), and “double Dutch” (gibberish).
See also: courage, Dutch
References in classic literature ?
It was one of those spacious farmhouses, with high- ridged but lowly sloping roofs, built in the style handed down from the first Dutch settlers; the low projecting eaves forming a piazza along the front, capable of being closed up in bad weather.
Among these, the most formidable was a burly, roaring, roystering blade, of the name of Abraham, or, according to the Dutch abbreviation, Brom Van Brunt, the hero of the country round which rang with his feats of strength and hardihood.
Not those of the bevy of buxom lasses, with their luxurious display of red and white; but the ample charms of a genuine Dutch country tea-table, in the sumptuous time of autumn.
This is perhaps the reason why we so seldom hear of ghosts except in our long-established Dutch communities.
In fact Wolfert Webber was one of those worthy Dutch burghers of the Manhattoes whose fortunes have been made, in a manner, in spite of themselves; who have tenaciously held on to their hereditary acres, raising turnips and cabbages about the skirts of the city, hardly able to make both ends meet, until the corporation has cruelly driven streets through their abodes, and they have suddenly awakened out of their lethargy, and, to their astonishment, found themselves rich men.
The ancient mansion of his forefathers was still kept up, but, instead of being a little yellow-fronted Dutch house in a garden, it now stood boldly in the midst of a street, the grand home of the neighborhood; for Wolfert enlarged it with a wing on each side, and a cupola or tea room on top, where he might climb up and smoke his pipe in hot weather, and in the course of time the whole mansion was overrun by the chubby-faced progeny of Amy Webber and Dirk Waldron.
Still further," added he, "these same Dutch are building for the king, at this moment, six vessels after the model of the best of their name.
The Athenians, who indeed have left behind them a pretty tolerable reputation for ingratitude, have in this respect to yield precedence to the Dutch.
They found nothing for their turn, for the trunk had been searched before, but they discovered several things very much to my satisfaction, as particularly a parcel of money in French pistols, and some Dutch ducatoons or rix-dollars, and the rest was chiefly two periwigs, wearing-linen, and razors, wash-balls, perfumes, and other useful things necessary for a gentleman, which all passed for my husband's, and so I was quit to them.
This I did because I knew the Dutch gentlemen and their servants would be upon the road that day, either in the stagecoaches or riding post, and I did not know but the drunken fellow, or somebody else that might have seen me at Harwich, might see me again, and so I thought that in one day's stop they would be all gone by.
It was not your fault, Mr Wegg, I must admit,' said Venus, 'that he got off with the Dutch bottle that night.
I could not conceive what he meant; and I turned short upon him, and said: "I wish you would explain yourself; I cannot imagine what reason I have to be afraid of any of the company's ships, or Dutch ships.
I can tell you but part of the story, sir," says he; "but I have a Dutch seaman here with me, and I believe I could persuade him to tell you the rest; but there is scarce time for it.
When we were at sea we began to consult with the two seamen, and inquire what the meaning of all this should be; and the Dutchman confirmed the gunner's story about the false sale of the ship and of the murder of the captain, and also how that he, this Dutchman, and four more got into the woods, where they wandered about a great while, till at length he made his escape, and swam off to a Dutch ship, which was sailing near the shore in its way from China.
He then told us that he went to Batavia, where two of the seamen belonging to the ship arrived, having deserted the rest in their travels, and gave an account that the fellow who had run away with the ship, sold her at Bengal to a set of pirates, who were gone a- cruising in her, and that they had already taken an English ship and two Dutch ships very richly laden.