Genealogical Resources in the Netherlands

Genealogical Terms in Dutch

One need not be fluent in Dutch to glean information from Dutch-language documents. This page lists resources to help in interpreting some relevant terms.


"This page lists some Dutch words that appear frequently in genealogical records and publications."


"To find and use specific types of Dutch records, you will need to know some key words in Dutch. This section lists key genealogical terms in English and the Dutch words with the same or similar meanings.

For example, in the first column you will find the English word marriage. In the second column you will find Dutch words with meanings such as marry, marriage, wedding, wedlock, unite, legitimate, joined, and other words used in Dutch records to indicate marriage."


A glossary of Dutch genealogy terminolgy, arranged alphabetically in Dutch.


"Reading Dutch acts is a skill that you can learn, even if you don't speak Dutch. The form of Dutch acts from the civil register is relatively constant. With practice, patience, perseverance, and a good dictionary, you can understand most acts, even though you won't be able to understand every word. Other sources, such as church books and the population register, are mere lists of names, dates and places - with just a few Dutch words, you can understand what it is all about.

The aim of this dictionary is to help you understand Dutch acts. All words and phrases listed below are taken from major Dutch genealogy resources, such as civil register acts, population registers and church books. Many of these phrases are archaic - this list is not meant to help you with conversational Dutch!"


About the New Netherland Institute

For over three decades, NNI has helped cast light on America's Dutch roots. In 2010, it partnered with the New York State Office of Cultural Education to establish the New Netherland Research Center, with matching funds from the State of the Netherlands. NNI is registered as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Contributions are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law. More

The New Netherland Research Center

Housed in the New York State Library, the NNRC offers students, educators, scholars and researchers a vast collection of early documents and reference works on America's Dutch era. More


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