1. young woman, girl, doll, gal [noun] [de meid, de meiden] [‘meid‘]
Today we cover "meid", a word that is often used for young(er) females but can also be used by older women amongst eachother. Contrary to "wijf", "meid" has a positive connotation. The plural "meiden" is quite commonly used to describe a group of young women. The use of "meid" or "meiden" is informal and translations also depend on the context and how the word is used, see Examples.
Related to "meid" is the word "meisje": "young girl/woman".
– "Nicole is een toffe meid, vind je niet?"
("Nicole is a great girl, don’t you think")
– "<tegen een klein nichtje:> Zooooo, jij bent al een grote meid geworden!"
("<to a little niece:> Well, well…what a big girl you have become!" Lit.: "you’ve become a big girl already!")
– "Ik durf die knappe meid aan de bar echt niet aan te spreken…"
("I really don’t have the guts to go talk to that pretty girl at the bar…" The verb "durven" translates to "to dare", and "aanspreken" to "to approach and talk to".)
– "<hockeycoach:> Kom op meiden!! Nog 2 minuten, we hebben bijna gewonnen!!")
("<hockey coach:> Come on girls!! Two more minutes, we have almost won!!")
– "Hé lieve meid, ben je al thuis? En, ben je geslaagd?"
("Hey sweetie, are you already home? And, did you find what you were looking for?")
– "Ja meid, het valt niet mee hè, die ouderdom!"
("<one elderly woman to the other while taking a break on a park bench:> Yes my dear, it’s not that easy is it now, old age!")
– "Hé meid, wat zie je er leuk uit vandaag!"
("Hey doll, you’re looking great today!" You might also hear the more explicit gays say this to each other.)
– "Een slimme meid is op haar toekomst voorbereid": literally "A smart girl is prepared for her future" this was a slogan used by the Dutch government in the early nineties in order to stimulate grammar/high school girls to prepare for and later choose a scientific university study. The slogan was a lot more successful than the actual intent 🙂
– "Meisje": girl (from very young to early twenties).
– "Griet": like "meid" but less common and a bit old-fashioned.
– "Vrouw": woman, female.
– "Meidengroep": girl band. Two famous Dutch examples from the eighties are "Dolly Dots" and "Frizzle Sizzle".
2. maid, servant [noun] [de meid, de meiden] [‘meid‘]
In the meaning of maid or servant, usually an adjective is used, see the Related words. The word "meisje" can be used similarly.
This usage of the word "meid" is a bit outdated though.
Leading up and during new year’s evening you might here talk of a so-called "gillende keukenmeid": screaming/yelling kitchen maid. This is a fire cracker making a high pitched noise.
– "Dienstmeid": maid, servant.
– "Keukenmeid": kitchen maid.