Dutch courage

Dutch courage

bravery induced by drinking alcohol

The phrase Dutch courage stems from a long-standing British belief that the Dutch are extraordinarily heavy drinkers.


a Dutch uncle

a kindly but authoritative figure

Dutch here probably means no more than that the person described is not a genuine blood relation. In the mid 19th century I will talk to him like a Dutch uncle (meaning…I will give him a lecture) was noted as being an American expression.

1999 - Daily Telegraph - She was the kindest of Dutch uncles, always prepared to listen to one's troubles.

go Dutch

share the cost of something equally

An outing or entertainment paid for in this way is a Dutch treat and sharing the cost of a meal in a restaurant is eating Dutch.

1993 - Vanity Fair - He insists on buying his own tickets, going Dutch, as he puts it.

in Dutch

in trouble - US - informal - dated

1939 - Raymond Chandler - The Big Sleep - And for that amount of money you're willing to get yourself in Dutch with half the law enforcement of this country?

that beats the Dutch

that is extraordinary or startling – US

I am a Dutchman

used to express your disbelief or as a way of underlining an emphatic assertion – British

1994 - Ian Botham - My Autobiography - I read somewhere that Warne said he had been possessed by demons. Well, in that case I'm a Dutchman.

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