skip to content skip to search skip to navigation Listen Live skip to logon
Thursday 2nd October 2014
Max 21°C | Min 15°C

What's the origin of "going Dutch"?

Question

Where does the phrase “going Dutch” come from, when you split a restaurant bill?
Emma, Finchley

Answer

** Definitive **
Name: Daniel, Barking
Qualification: I’ve been to Holland 28 times
Answer: Dutch farmhouse doors split equally at the top and bottom, like a stable door. The original term was a Dutch door. Hence the term, “going Dutch”.

Name: Jamie, Orpington
Qualification: Talking Double Dutch
Answer: The Dutch were colonial rivals to the English in the 1700s and there are lots of negative phrases about the Dutch in English language – Dutch Uncle, Dutch courage, Double Dutch for example. At that time, it was seen as ungallant to split the bill, so a negative phrase about the Dutch was created.
(James O’Brien: You haven’t actually answered where the phrase came from.)

Do you agree? Put your answer in the box below...

Comments