Confusing Words Words of the Week

patient and geduldich

When do you use patient and geduldich in Pennsylvania Dutch? When would you use patience and geduld?

Most native Pennsylvania Dutch speakers will understand both the words patient and geduldich. But when would it be best to each?

Patience noun (the quality)

  1. patience (more common)
    Du musht may patience havva.
  2. geduld (less common outside of the Bible, but understood by most. Most commonly used if at end of sentence along with mitt)
    Gott sei geduld is’n kshenk.
    Miah missa’s ohnemma mitt geduld.

Patient adj (what someone is or can become)

  1. patient
    See is immah patient mitt iahra kinnah.
    Sei patient mitt si.
  2. geduldich
    Gott is geduldich mitt uns.

Patiently adv = patiently (how someone does something)
Ich binn am patiently voahra biss ich healthy binn.

💡 Patience, patient, patiently can also give idea of endurance (continuing on with something hard to deal with).


  • When talking about about something from the Bible, or a Bible subject, geduld and geduldich are very common.
  • But if having a casual conversation, it would be more common to use patience and patient instead.
  • And if talking about someone patiently doing something or patiently waiting, then you’re safer to use the English word patiently.