You’re in the library, and your Dutch friend scuttles over wearing a worried face. ‘I’m throwing down the hatchet', they whisper, ‘I need to get a fresh nose!’

Wait, you reply, what are you talking about?

‘Writing this essay is like fighting against windmills!’, they continue, ‘I’m completely cooked: you told me it would be little apples—little eggs!’

Seriously, you yell, what the formulation are you saying?

Dutch expressions in English: hilarious translations of every-day Dutch idioms. And when I say everyday, I mean the Dutch say them every-freakin’-day. It’s like cockney-rhyming slang in Britain, except nearly everyone says them here, rather than the cigarette-chewing London-minority in Britain.

Here in Groningen, nothing says ‘that dinner was delicious’ than to claim that it was ‘as if an angel pissed on my tongue!’ And what better way to mark the result of a difficult decision than to shoot-up a church? And there I was thinking that the Dutch were religiously-tolerant!

‘You sit with a mouth full of teeth.’

Well, thanks for stating the obvious, I say, half expecting my mouth to be toothless in a punch’s-time.  ‘She can be glued with a wet finger.’ You could get arrested for that!

But if you’ve ever been asked where Abraham gets the mustard from, it’s not what it seems. They’re simply telling you to keep up with topical issues. So not every Dutchperson is tripping tulips when they tell you that you’re walking on your gums: they’re just commenting on your speechlessness.

Dutch expressions are littered with mild alexi(cal)thymia. Trying to fully understand this expressive language is hopeless: the windmill is through the clamp that holds the axel in place.

The list of Dutch expressions is near endless. I was tempted to just list them, as they’re hilarious on their own. If you can think of anymore, write them in the comments box below!