polar bear [noun] [de ijsbeer, de ijsberen]
Literally this word translates to ‘ice bear’ and that’s why you might hear a Dutch person use this word mistakenly.
The word ‘ijs’ is also used for ‘ice cream’. An ice lolly (popsicle), or a single cone of ice cream, is called an ‘ijsje’ (diminutive).
It is common in the Dutch language to create a verb from a noun by adding ‘en’. In this case, the verb is ‘ijsberen’. ‘Ijsberen’ is the activity of pacing up and down the room, aimlessly and lost in thought. This verb is derived from the behaviour of polar bears in captivity.
1. "De professor ijsbeerde door de kamer."
("The professor paced up and down the room.")
2. "Ik hou van walnootijs."
("I like walnut ice cream.)
3. <At McDonald’s> "Een sundae-ijsje alstublieft!"
("One sundae ice cream please!")