Addressing a person by surname alone - only used for males?

Hoi!!
Is this true what one of my books mentions that in case of the most informal form of addressing somebody by surname, for example, telling somebody there is somebody waiting for them on the line, this is only acceptable in case you are addressing a male?
E.g.: Bakker, telefon!!
Will it essentially be understood that Bakker is a man?
 
  • HKK

    Senior Member
    Dutch/Belgium
    Ricardito, Setwale's question wasn't about the English military but about Dutch civilian use of surnames.

    I can confirm what your book says on this. Between men, using surnames is frequent. However, a lot of men don't like it and prefer being called by their first name. I think it's the same thing in English. As for women, calling them by their surname is either rude or intended playfully and between friends only.
     
    I would suggest 'Meneer Bakker, telefoon!!'
    It sounds politer to me and they know exactly what you mean. If you use only Bakker one could think you refer to the persons profession and not to his name.
     
    Last edited by a moderator:

    Frank06

    Senior Member
    Nederlands / Dutch (Belgium)
    Hi,
    I would suggest 'Meneer Bakker, telefoon!!'
    It sounds politer to me and they know exactly what you mean. If you use only Bakker one could think you refer to the persons profession and not to his name.
    Nah, come on! As if all people called 'Bakker' are bakers... And 'meneer Bakker' is absolutely not the same as calling somebody with his/her family name only.

    It's very informal, yes (and in my humble opinion even a bit of a macho thing), and yes, it needs context. But one only yells 'Bakker' if one knows the person and hence the gender of that person, no? But I don't think it's that uncommon, especially not among men.

    The reference to the military made me think about a Flemish TV series, in which the cops (yes, it's Flikken) call each other with their last name, men and women alike.

    Groetjes,

    Frank
     
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