Dutch term – Winter

The Dutch word winter means the same in English: winter.

Wintertime was traditionally the time to do indoor activities, such as finishing wooden shoes, weaving, making mats, etc. In many parts of the Netherlands, it was hard to get around in the winter since the roads were too boggy. As soon as it was cold enough for the ice to become reliable, many people used frozen creeks to get around, either on skates or on sleds.

Winter landscape with skaters. Credits: Hendrick Avercamp, collection Rijksmuseum (public domain)


About Yvette Hoitink

Yvette Hoitink, CG® is a board-certified genealogist in the Netherlands. She has been doing genealogy for almost 30 years. Her expertise is helping people from across the world find their ancestors in the Netherlands. Read about Yvette's professional genealogy services.


  1. Hi Yvette,
    So “Winter” in “Winterswijk” also means the season, winter?

    • It’s unclear. “Wijk” is something like a town or place. The most plausible explanations are that it means “place to go in winter” or “Winether’s place” where Winether is a Saxon first name.

      • Oh, interesting!

        My four Gelderland ancestors who came to Muscatine, Iowa are the only Dutch generation I have no photos of. Tonight I found a portrait of Geertruid Huinink Freers, listed as “Mrs. A Freers” among the Oscar Grossheim collection at the Musser Public Library in Muscatine. The date is 1900, and given the woman’s age, there is no Muscatine Freers with the initial A of the right era to be her husband other than Arend Jan Freers. Here she is:


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