Woordenboek Woensdag: Verkeer/Verkeerd

Dutch Lesson
I slacked a bit over the past few weeks on my Woordenboek Woensdag entries while my parents were here, but I’m trying to get back into the swing of things. I haven’t been doing much proper studying, but I’ve noticed recently that I seem to understand a little bit more of written Dutch and occasionally a bit more spoken Dutch, as well. I’m also trying to put together more sentences now, even if only in my head. Whether walking around town or lying in bed, I have little conversations in my head and try to see how much I can do in Dutch. Some times I do ok, other times I get stuck very easily. Of course, whether I’m right is a whole other issue!

Speaking of being wrong, this leads me to the words of the day: verkeer and verkeerd. They’re annoyingly similar but with very different meanings.

Verkeer (as seen in the photo above) is the word for traffic. We spent a lot of time in traffic last week coming back from dropping my parents at the ferry in Europoort, near Rotterdam. The drive there was quick and painless. The drive back took hours and was incredibly frustrating. Still, it gave me a topic for tomorrow, as you’ll see. Fortunately, I don’t have to deal with verkeer much in het dagelijks verkeer (in everyday life, or “in the daily traffic”), outside of fietsen verkeer (bike traffic).

Verkeerd, on the other hand, is an adjective or adverb meaning wrong. I suspect this is a word I should learn, since I’ll probably hear it a lot as I eventually try to speak more Dutch. Iets verkeerd uitspreken is what my dictionary lists as the phrase for mispronouncing something. I’m not quite sure how to use that, though. Would it be: Ik uitspreek iets verkeerd. ??

So, two more words for my slowly growing vocabulary. Let’s hope I can keep them straight and ultimately avoid both traffic and being wrong!

3 thoughts on “Woordenboek Woensdag: Verkeer/Verkeerd

  1. verbs with “uit, aan, toe, op” etc are usually split. Just like outreach becomes I reach out..
    That makes it “Ik spreek iets verkeerd uit”, “Hij sprak het verkeerd uit.” en “Het wordt verkeerd uitgesproken”

    • I always forget about those verbs splitting. It’s definitely one of the more foreign concepts for me. Thanks for the reminder and explanation; I really do appreciate it.

  2. Verkeerd can be translated as wrong. It is mostly used in these situations:
    U bent verkeerd./You are at the wrong place/adress. (When you ask direction)
    Het is verkeerd./It is wrong. (as in: you don’t feel good about it)
    Je hebt het verkeerd begrepen./You have understood wrong. (Note! Not: you misunderstood)
    Koffie verkeerd/Coffee with alot of milk (as opposed to ‘een scheutje melk’)
    ….
    Maybe this will help with some understandings. I find it more useful than googel translate for getting the meaning in stead of the translation of a foreign word: http://www.vertalen.nu/vertaal?vertaal=verkeerd&van=nl&naar=en

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