This phrase harkens back to the mid-seventeenth century, when the British and the Dutch were, as nations, competing for European (and global) maritime superiority. It, along with a number of other phrases such as Dutch retreat, Dutch act, and Dutch courage are indicative of the disdain the Dutch were held in by the British. Written use of the term dates from later - the mid-eightteenth or nineteenth centuries.

The usages I have seen essentially use it to mean someone who is not a close relative giving you advice as if they were family. Merriam-Webster states that it is someone who admonishes or rebukes sternly. Most of the places it is used as a pejorative towards the helpful advisor.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.