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What would the most apt translation for the word "hypocrite" be in German?

In the Duden the word Hypokrit does exist, though I believe it is used very rarely.

Some other online dictionaries translate it as "Heuchler", though that doesn't really describe the pretense that lies in the meaning of hypocrite.

I have also read that "jemand der eine Doppelmoral hat" is an alternative way of describing a hypocrite.

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Ich glaube, wir haben kein ebenso eingängiges Wort für jemanden, der Wasser predigt und Wein trinkt. –  Carsten Schultz Mar 23 '14 at 1:49

1 Answer 1

up vote 9 down vote accepted

I agree with Marcus Schaetzles comment. The most accurate and common used translations are in this order:

  1. Heuchler/in {m/f}
  2. Pharisäer {m}
  3. Scheinheiliger/Scheinheilige {m/f}

Also these are notable in addition, but rather rarely used and heard:

  1. Frömmler {m/f}
  2. Duckmäuser {m}
  3. Hypokrit {m}

Questions and answers, related to and based on 'Etymology' + 'Onomastic' should always refer to dictionaries queries, imo, therefore:

hypocrite [I. \ˈhipəˌkrit, usu -id.+V\ noun]

Etymology:

  • Middle English ipocrite,
  • from Old French ypocrite,
  • from Late Latin hypocrita,
  • from Greek hypokritēs, actor on the stage, pretender, hypocrite, from hypokrinesthai

Example:

One who pretends to be what he is not or to have principles or beliefs that he does not have; especially: One who falsely assumes an appearance of virtue or religion:

I dare swear he is no hypocrite, but prays from his heart — Shakespeare 

Source: Webster's Unabridged Dictionary

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