False friends – 18: handel vs handle



Transcript of the video lesson – handel vs handle:

Hi, welcome to learndutch.org’s false friends.
Words from different languages that sound or look the same, but with a different meaning. Today the Dutch noun: “handel”, and the english “handle”. Attention, we do not talk about the verb! Because that would make it much more complicated.
The nouns for sure are false friends!

“handle” in English, is what we call “een handvat” in Dutch. An other word is “handgreep”. Basically a grip, which could be on any type of device.
We can use the word “handvat” for a door handle, but also other words: “kruk”, or “deurkruk”, en “klink” or “deurklink”.

If we talk about the handle of a cup, then in Dutch we say “oor” which means ear… you can imagine why.

By the way, we sometimes also use the word “hendel”, written with an E”. But unlike the english word “handle”, and unlike the previous mentioned “handvat” en “handgreep”, the Dutch word “hendel” we can only used for rotating grips.

But then, “de handel” in Dutch, is the “trade”, the activity. But it can also refer to “the store”. For example, a book store in Dutch is “een boekhandel”. And even, it is possible to use the word for the goods itself. When a flower trader would tell you about “zijn handel”, then he is talking about the flowers.

De handel in handvaten.
The trade in handles.

And for the ones who paid attention very well:
De handel van zijn handel is goede handel !
The goods of his store is trading well !

And for the very advanced Dutch learners and for the Dutch themselves… this phrase: “de handel van zijn handel is goede handel” could have multiple interpretations. How many are you able to distinguish – please write it in the comments below the video in youtube.