in Dutch Etymology

Life is a roller-coaster. It has its ups and downs and sorrows and joys. “It is always misery and marriage.” Het is altijd rouwen en trouwen.


💡 ruw- / ruig- in Dutch means ‘rough’

Het weer can be rough or ruw, while een frugt is rauw. De laandschaap can be rough and rugged or ruig.
When you are feeling rough, experiencing misery or sorrow, you are in rouwen (also a verb). Sometimes though you feel rough because of your own actions. In that case you can berouwen (repent) and feel better.


💡 trouw- in Dutch means ‘faith’ or ‘loyalty’

If you are trouw aan someone, you might consider trouwen or marrying them and promise to always have loyaliteit or be trouw like een hond, and never ontrouw. Trouwens (by the way), if you were getrouwd (married), it is obviously implied that you also vertrouwen (trust) your partner. But if instead you wantrouwen your partner, you probably need to get a scheiden (divorce). Don’t worry! You can always hertrouwen (re-marry).

If you’re familiar with something or someone, you are vertrouwd. If you have a secret, something that you only tell to people you trust, you are keeping that informatie vertrouwelijk.

Brief sidenote. While it may sound correct, troost doesn’t really mean ‘to trust’. It means ‘comfort’ or ‘consolation’. If you come second in a competition, you might even get een troostprijs or as the Dutch sometimes like to call it, een poedelprijs (poodle-prize).


Quick Recap

🔶 ruw = rough, raw
🔶 ruig = rough, rugged
🔶 rouwen = misery, sorrow
🔶 berouwen = repent

🔶 trouw = loyal, faith
🔶 trouwen = marry
🔶 getrouwd = married
🔶 hertrouwen = re-marry
🔶 vertrouwen = trust
🔶 vertrouwd = familiar
🔶 vertrouwelijk = confidential, secret (adj.)
🔶 wantrouwen = distrust
🔶 trouwens = by the way
🔶 scheiden = divorce

🔶 troost = comfort, consolation
🔶 troostprijs / poedelprijs = consolation prize


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