to meet Iconspeaker_3
[ont-moe-ten, ont-moet-te, ont-moet]

"Ontmoeten" is typically used for the moment of encountering one
another. In a formal context it can also imply meeting for a longer
time, for example between heads of state. You can use "ontmoeten" for
both planned and unexpected meetings. The activity of "getting
together (to socialize)" is "afspreken". Instead of "ontmoeten" you can
sometimes also use "treffen", or "tegenkomen", see the Related words.

You may hear "ontmoeten" being used figuratively, e.g. "weerstand ontmoeten" ("to meet with opposition").

– "Weet jij waar Peter en Holis elkaar (voor het eerst) hebben ontmoet?" 
("Do you know where Peter and Holis met for the fist time?")

– "Waar hebben jullie elkaar ontmoet?" 
("Where did you
(guys) first meet?" Without context this is likely to refer to a first
encounter, but can also mean "where did you meet?" although it would be more common to use "tegenkomen" or "afspreken" in that case.)

– "Dat is dan afgesproken; we ontmoeten elkaar op het station." 
("That’s a deal / Agreed; we will see/meet each other at the station.")

– "Simon ontmoette Erica op een feestje. Hij was direct wild van haar, maar Erica zag hem niet zitten." 
met Erica at a party. He was crazy about her immediately, but Erica did
not like him." Lit.: "but did not see him sit." You can also
translate "niet zien zitten" with "to not be up for it", "to not have
faith in it", etc.)

– "Er was kritiek op Balkenende toen hij de dalai lama niet wilde ontmoeten."
("Balkenende was criticized when he did not want to meet with the dalai lama.")

– "Wie
goed doet, goed ontmoet": not always true, but this expression says
that in order to be treated well (or encounter no harm) one has to be a
good person ("do as you would be done by"). Despite its archaic
character this is a common expression!

Related words:
– Ontmoeting: encounter [noun] [de ontmoeting, de ontmoetingen].
– Treffen: to meet (up) [verb] [trof, getroffen]. Typically used when you have agreed to meet.

– "Waar treffen wij elkaar morgen?" – "Even denken, op de hoek van Keizersgracht en Reestraat?"
("Where do we meet tomorrow?" – "Let me think, on the corner of Keizersgracht and Reestraat?")

– Afspreken: to fix a date/time, to make an appointment [verb] [sprak af, afgesproken].
– Tegenkomen: to meet/encounter [verb] [kwam tegen, tegengekomen].

– "Ik ben Kit nog tegengekomen in de stad." – "O leuk, hebben jullie even kunnen bijpraten?"
ran/bumped into Kit (when I was) downtown / in the city centre". –
"That’s nice, did you get the chance to catch up a little?")

One thought on “Ontmoeten

  1. In my experience, many Dutch people use a lot ‘encountering’ for ‘meeting/coming across’, thus missing the negative (or causual) connotation that encounter generally has. See, for example, http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/encounter. Encontrarse (Spanish), incontrarsi (Italian), rencontrer (French) do not necessarily have such connotation, but the English related form has it. A pedantic note?