Language Dynamics in the Dutch Golden Age


Project leaders

Prof. dr. Marjo van Koppen – Utrecht University & The Meertens Institute

Marjo van Koppen is a professor of Dutch language variation at Utrecht University. She is an expert in theoretical (morho)syntax, Dutch (historical) linguistics and linguistic variation.

Dr. Feike Dietz – Utrecht University

Feike Dietz is an assistant professor in Early modern Dutch literature (1550-1800) at Utrecht University. Her research, interdisciplinary in character and combining text-analytical and cultural-historical approaches, for example focuses on the representation and teaching of language and literacy skills in early modern books for the young.

Within the context of the Language Dynamics project and its Nederlab pilot study, Marjo and Feike are currently examining the linguistic and rhetorical contexts in which P.C. Hooft used embracing negation.



Dr. Marijn Schraagen – Utrecht University

Marijn Schraagen is a postdoctoral researcher in Computational Linguistics. His research includes various topics from artificial intelligence, data mining and natural language processing. In the Language Dynamics project he is involved in corpus development, annotation engineering, data processing and classification, such as automatically determining the topic category given a specific letter of Hooft. As an example: letter 829 can be classified in the category invitations based on the phrase oft wij U.E. met de H.H. Reael en Vossius, op morghenavondt oft op zondagh, ende te welker tijdt alsdan, te verwachten hebben, which the computer may be able to learn as well.



Cora van de Poppe MA – Utrecht University

Cora van de Poppe investigates early modern intra-author-variation within its literary-cultural context. She is particularly interested in the communicative function of linguistic items and their role in structuring discourse. Firstly, Cora van de Poppe has studied variation in the use of the genitive and verb tense (have doubling versus the perfect tense) by the sixteenth-century author D.V. Coornhert. Secondly, she has studied variation in verb types and tenses as discourse-structuring devices in the ego-document of the seventeenth-century Remonstrant widow Willemken van Wanray. Currently, she investigates the role of begin + infinitive as discourse marker in P.C. Hooft’s Nederlandsche Historiën. In future research, she will focus on the linguistic characteristics of Michiel de Ruyter’s ship journals.


Joanna Wall – Utrecht University & The Meertens Institute

Joanna Wall is a PhD-student at Utrecht University and the Meertens Institute. She started her current position in September 2018, having previously worked in the project for her RMA internship and thesis. Joanna’s research focuses on syntactic phenomena in seventeenth-century Dutch which she examines from a generative perspective. In recent research, Joanna has investigated have participial and have-doubling constructions in historical varieties of Dutch. She compared these phenomena with parallel constructions in modern Dutch, Dutch dialects, English and German, and examined the implications of variation in their attestation for models of language change. In her latest research, Joanna also looks at periphrastic passive constructions in seventeenth-century Dutch.