fly [noun] [de vlieg, de vliegen] [‘vlieg‘]

"Vlieg" is in general used for any kind of fly. Specify your fly by looking at the Examples.
The related verb is "vliegen", used for any kind of flying, active or passive, apart from "to kite" which is "vliegeren" in Dutch. (Guess what "kite" translates to.) See also 180. Vlucht.

– "De vlieg vliegt door de lucht."
("The fly flies through the air.")

– "Ober, er zit een vlieg in mijn soep."
("Waiter, there is a fly in my soup.")

An old series of bad Dutch jokes exists of which each joke starts
out with this sentence. For that reason, this is a well-known Dutch
sentence (but the jokes are really bad).

– "Laatst was ik aan het hardlopen en toen kreeg ik allemaal vliegen in mijn gezicht."
("I was running the other day and I got all these flies in my face.")

– "Twee vliegen in één klap slaan": to kill two birds with one stone. Lit.: "to hit to flies in one smash".
– "Je vangt meer vliegen met honing dan met azijn": honey catches more flies than vinegar.
– "Als vliegen op een hoop stront": this informal expression translates to "like flies on a heap of shit" and is used to describe the popularity of something.

– "De jongens verzamelden zich rond de voetbalspeler als vliegen op een hoop stront."
("The boys gathered around the football/soccer player like flies on a heap of shit.")

Related words:
– "Bromvlieg": bluebottle, blowfly.
– "Fruitvlieg": fruit fly.
– "Strontvlieg": informal specification of "bromvlieg" in the case it is checking out "stront".
– "Eendagsvlieg": mayfly. Often used figuratively for one day wonders or short-lived succes.
– "Spaanse vlieg": Spanish fly.
– "Made": maggot.

2 thoughts on “Vlieg

  1. We have the corny old “Waiter there’s a fly in my soup.” jokes in English too.
    “Shhh, keep it down sir, or everyone will want one.”
    “Sorry sir, maybe I missed it when I removed the other three.” etc etc

  2. I’m glad to hear that it is not limited to the Netherlands 🙂 I wonder if other countries have the same jokes, and who is responsible for the distribution. It can’t be the quality for sure!

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