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Top 10 Funny Dutch Place Names

Posted on Friday, January 27th, 2006 at 7:30 am CET

There are over 7,000 different towns in the Netherlands and some of them have very funny names. Here are some of my favorite ones (in random order).

Place (Province) Translation
Wijk Bij Duurstede (Utrecht) Neighborhood Near Duurstede (‘expensive place’). Duurstede is the name of the nearby castle/ruin, where the bishop of Utrecht used to live.
Doodstil (Groningen) Dead Quiet (as in ‘you could hear a pin drop’) was voted the most beautiful place name in 2005. From that award so many people started visiting the town that locals complained about it not being quiet anymore. The name means Dood’s (a person’s name) Bridge (’til’ is an old word for bridge).
Muggenbeet (Overijssel) Mosquito Bite is a popular tourist destination, with the National Park De Weerribben nearby.
Monster (Zuid Holland) Monster, a not-so-scary place on the North Sea, probably gets its name from “Monasterium”, the Latin name for monastery.
Made (Noord Brabant) Maggot near Breda in the south of the country has a population of around 12,000. Its name appeared for the first time in 1321 and referes to ‘gemeenschappelijk maai- of hooiland’, or communal mow/hay field’.
De Laatste Stuiver (Friesland) The Last Nickel is named De Laatste Stuver in Frisian and is a very small place in the north of the country with reportedly only three houses.
Hongerige Wolf (Groningen) Hungry Wolf is a one-horse town in the far north-east of the country. It is famous for its 1924 sluice.
Moddergat (Friesland) Mud Hole is home to open-air museum ‘t Fiskershoske which exhibits 18th/19th centuries cottages that are linked to the old inshore fishing industry.
De Hulk (Noord Holland) The Hulk is part of the municipality of Wester-Koggenland (north of Amsterdam) with a population of 13,757.
Vuilpan (Zeeland) Dirty Pan lies in the far south-west of the country.


Jul 19, 2010
9:50 am
#1 Peter Berg wrote:

Hello. I live in Cos Cob, Connecticut, a village near New York City which was under Dutch control from 1640 until 1656 or so. Can you suggest the origin of the name Cos Cob?

Jul 19, 2010
9:56 am
#2 Wolfstad wrote:

Peter, the name doesn’t sound Dutch to me, but I just found the following explanation at

The community name is derived from the Coe family. In 1641 Robert Coe moved to the Stamford plantation and became one of its leading figures. At about the same time, he encouraged a cousin (John Coe) to sail from England and settle at the mouth of the Mianus River where he was granted 5 acres (20,000 m2) of land. John built a sea wall at the mouth of the river to protect low lying lands and to provide a safe moorage for small craft. A sea wall at that time was referred to as a “cob” — and thus it became Coes’ cob, and eventually shortened to Cos Cob.

An alternative explanation is that it derives from the Algonquian word for “high rock.”

Apr 19, 2012
4:53 am
#3 Ivo wrote:

You forgot Rectum in the municipality of Wierden. I think thats the best!

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