atmosphere, sphere Iconspeaker_3
[de sfeer, de sfe-ren]

"Sfeer" is used for "atmosphere" in the context of ambiance or character; when you want to discuss the earth’s atmosphere or measure pressure, we say "atmosfeer". Sometimes "sfeer" is also used figuratively for ‘scope’ or ‘domain’, see the examples.

– "Als ik jou was zou ik Frank niet uitnodigen voor de kerstlunch; hij verpest altijd de sfeer met zijn gezeur over het management." 
("I wouldn’t invite Frank to the Christmas lunch if I were you; he always ruins the atmosphere with his whining about the management.")

– "De kerstverlichting in de Amsterdamse straten zorgt voor een goede sfeer." 
("The Christmas lighting in the streets of Amsterdam creates a good atmosphere.")

– "Gefeliciteerd met je nieuwe huis, je hebt er echt een fijne sfeer gecreëerd!" 
("Congrats on the new house, you have absolutely created a pleasant atmosphere." Note the use of "er"; it implies location, in this case the house.)

– "Maastricht is een stad met een heel eigen sfeer." 
("Maastricht is a city with a distinctive character.")

– "Doe jij aan meditatie?" –  "Nee, maar ik verkeer wel regelmatig in hogere sferen!" 
("Do you practise meditation?" – "No, but I do have my head in the clouds on a frequent basis!")

– "Wat vind jij dat we als eerste uit de criminele sfeer moeten halen?" 
("What do you believe to be the first thing that we should decriminalize?")

Related words:
– Sfeerverhogend: "creating a better atmosphere" [adjective/adverb]. This word was introduced by the main character in the Dutch film "Simon" and its usage has become somewhat popular. The opposite is "sfeerverlagend".
– Invloedssfeer: sphere/range of influence [noun] [de invloedssfeer, <no plural>].

– "Het spijt me, maar mijn invloedssfeer is beperkt tot dit kantoor."
("I’m sorry, but I have no influence outside this office.")

– Sfeerverlichting: atmospheric lighting [noun] [de verlichting, <no plural>].
– Sfeervol: full of atmosphere [adjective]
– Atmosfeer: atmosphere (physics) [noun] [de atmosfeer, de atmosferen].
– Stemming: mood [noun] [de stemming, de stemmingen].
– Bol: sphere (mathematics) [noun] [de bol, de bollen].

3 thoughts on “Sfeer

  1. What a pleasant surprise. I was certain you’d not be back until after the holidays — so thanks for this unexpected post.
    Please keep up the excellent work in 2010. This is an incredibly well-done blog, and there’s truly nothing else like it.

  2. Hi guys, thanks for the kind notes! We’ll try to post something next week as well before we really go on a break 🙂

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