349. Vlag

flag [noun] [de vlag, de vlaggen] [‘vlag‘]

Are you still wondering why flags were put out everywhere yesterday? Of course because of our Queen’s 70th birthday yesterday! As explained in DWOTDs "Koninginnedag" and "Verjaardag", the Queen’s (late) mother’s birthday is celebrated on Queen’s Day (instead of her own), and Queen Beatrix’ birthday is on January 31st.

You can tell that the event bears a relationship to the Royal House if the flag is accompanied by a small orange streamer attached to the top of the flagpole. On Queen’s Day and all royal birthdays and births, both the orange streamer ("wimpel") and the national red-white-blue flag are put out. On all other events (Remembrance Day, Liberation Day, etc.), only the national flag is put out.

When adolescents pass their high school exams, the national flag is put out accompanied by a couple of schoolbooks or a schoolbag, see 227. Slagen.

In villages near the coast and now predominantly in Scheveningen, ‘Vlaggetjesdag’ (Lit.: ‘little flags day’) is celebrated since the 1950s. First it was celebrated the day before the Dutch herring fleet went out to sea. Nowadays, people celebrate the arrival of ‘Nieuwe Haring’, Dutch herring. Check out www.vlaggetjesdag.com for the programme of this year’s ‘Vlaggetjesdag’ (which will take place on June 7).

All twelve provinces of the Netherlands have their own flags, as do capitals of the provinces and many municipalities.

– "De Nederlandse vlag is rood-wit-blauw."
("The Dutch flag is red-white-blue.")

– "De 7-jarige Ajax-supporter zwaaide met zijn vlag tijdens de wedstrijd".
("The 7-year old Ajax supporter waved his flag during the match").

– "Met vlag en wimpel": with flying colours. Literally: "with flag and streamer".
– "Is ze nog steeds boos op je? – Ik weet het niet, ik zal eens kijken hoe de vlag erbij hangt."
("Is she still mad at you? -I don’t know, I will see which way the wind blows" Lit.: "…how the flags hangs.").

Related words:

– "Vlaggen": to wave, raise, put/hang out the flag.

– "De scheidrechter vlagde voor buitenspel."
("The referee raised the flag for offside").

– "Vlaggenstok": flagpole, flagstaff.
– "Zwaaien": to wave, to swing/sway.

This DWOTD was provided by guest author Laura.