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‘Winkelhieren’ voted Flemish word of the year

During the year, the public was able to select new words in the competition for the Word of the Year, resulting in 19 contenders. Credit: Pxhere

“Winkelhieren” (buy locally) was selected Tuesday as the Word of the Year by Van Dale, the reference dictionary for the Dutch language.

During the year, the public was able to submit new words in the competition for the Word of the Year, resulting in 19 contenders.

Over 9,000 Flemings participated in the decision, eventually settling on the word “winkelhieren”, with 33% of the vote.

‘Klimaatspijbelaar, which refers to a student who skips school to protest climate change, finished in second place with 17% of the votes.

Egelwegel – a word to describe a passage for hedgehogs between two gardens – came in third with 9% of the vote. 

In the Netherlands, the English word ‘boomer’ was voted Dutch word of the year, dictionary Van Dale announced.

The Nominees 

The nominees are often words that were created to name new phenomena.

babytheek‘: a loan service for baby equipment
bezorgschaamte‘: delivery shame, meaning the shame that someone feels because the delivery of a product they have ordered from a webshop causes a lot of traffic, environmental and other nuisances
boomer‘: abbreviation of baby boomer, used for someone with old-fashioned or conservative views
dampdode‘: someone who died after smoking an e-cigarette
egelwegel‘: pathway for hedgehogs between two gardens
ecopopulisme‘: ecopopulism, misleading way of raising awareness for environmental issues and climate change, responding to public fears, emotions and prejudices
foertformatie‘: a government formation that is seeking to fail formation proposals
jagger‘: young, active pensioner
jeukrups‘: oak processionary caterpillar, which causes a lot of itching
klimaatspijbelaar‘: a student who skips school to protest climate change
lawaaiflitspaal‘: device for determining whether a vehicle exceeds the noise standard
planepoolen‘: like ‘carpooling’, travelling somewhere by plane for ecological reasons
pretpedagogie‘: education that is not based on knowledge but on the wellbeing of students
restregering‘: minority government that remains after a majority party has left the coalition
sorrymuseum‘: museum in a former colonial power, with an ethnographic collection originating from a former colony, for the creation of which the current management apologises to the descendants of the inhabitants of that colony
splinterkind‘: child of divorced parents
toiletplant‘: plant on the bank of a watercourse, from seeds derived from human excrements that enter the watercourse via sewers
verthuizen‘: redecorating your house as an alternative to moving
winkelhieren‘: buying in local companies and stores

The 2018 winner was ‘moordstrookje’ (little murder strip, meaning a bicycle lane that is not worthy of its name).

Jules Johnston
The Brussels Times