Dutch term – Zolder

A zolder is an attic. You may come across the term in estate inventories, that describe the items per room. People often used zolders for storage. In some cases, the zolder would be used to sleep. Attics were often poorly insulated, so this could be cold unless you slept next to the chimney. I heard a story of a Frisian family where the older boys had to sleep in the attic over a cow shed, which was very cold in winter. The house was not big enough for all the children so only the younger … [Read more...]

Dutch term – Keuken

The keuken is the kitchen. You may come across the term in estate inventories, where the items in the house are tallied by room. Kitchens originally had open fires, then hearths, and in the 19th and 20th century this gradually changed to stoves. Small houses where poor people lived did not typically have a separate kitchen. They would cook over the hearth fire or furnace in the living room. … [Read more...]