Nugget of Knowledge: Going Dutch explained

Pennsylvania Dutch are known for not owing any debts

Nugget of Knowledge

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – What’s the origin of the expression “Going Dutch?”

In the 17th and 18th centuries, many German-speaking groups immigrated to the United States.

Those who settled in Pennsylvania became known as the Pennsylvania Dutch. The Dutch word coming not from The Netherlands but from the word for German: Deutsch.

Some were Amish, some Mennonite, others Lutherans and Catholics.

In the United States, the Pennsylvania Dutch developed a reputation for never owing people money. Even if friends got together in a tavern, each would pay his own bill.

Was this reputation accurate?

We really don’t know, but “Dutch” came to mean being responsible for your own debts.

“Dutch treat” first appeared in 1873, “Dutch lunch” in 1897 and “go Dutch” in 1914.

Today, splitting a bill is becoming more common around the world

In Egypt, to pay your own way is called going English.

In Turkey, it’s called going German, and in Pakistan, it is called going American.

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