Quick tip – Hear the dialects of your ancestors

In the Netherlands, every region, sometimes every town, has its own particular dialect. If you want to hear how the people in your ancestors’ region sounded, you can listen to audio clips at the Meertens Institute website.

  • Click on the + before the province
  • Click on the name of the town, which will open a pop-up with a list of recordings.
  • Click on “Afspelen” [play]

Most of the clips are anonymous.

You can also click Kaart [map] to see the recordings on a map or click the Opnames buiten Europa to hear recordings of Dutch people living in other countries, such as the Verenigde Staten [United States].

screenshot of the dialect map

About Yvette Hoitink

Yvette Hoitink, CG®, QG™ is a professional genealogist in the Netherlands. She holds the Certified Genealogist credential from the Board for Certification of Genealogists and has a post-graduate diploma in Family and Local History from the University of Dundee. She has been doing genealogy for over 30 years and helps people from across the world find their ancestors in the Netherlands. Read about Yvette's professional genealogy services.


  1. Judd Zandstra says

    I noticed one of the places named in the USA is Edgerton, South Dakota. I can only find a Edgerton Township in Hanson County, South Dakota but no city or population center near there. There is an Edgerton in southwestern Minnesota which is a fair sized city with a large Dutch population. I’m thinking South Dakota may be an error and should be MInnesota instead.

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