Redewendung - Questions on group of words having a meaning not deducible from individual words.

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7
votes
5answers
484 views

Gibt es einen kürzeren Ausdruck für “abgerundete Ecke”?

Gibt es ein Wort oder einen kürzeren Ausdruck für "abgerundete Ecke"? Beispielsatz: Ich bevorzuge diesen Bildschirm (dieses Bücherregal), denn er (es) hat abgerundete Ecken (Kanten).
7
votes
2answers
739 views

Woher kommt die Redewendung “über den Tellerrand sehen”?

Hier gibt es die verwandte, aber abweichende Frage, was es bedeutet. Das setze ich als bekannt voraus: den Horizont zu erweitern. Da man aber kein Leberklößchen ist, welches in Suppentellern wohnt, ...
7
votes
3answers
8k views

Was bedeutet “Über den Tellerrand sehen”?

Was bedeutet es, wenn man von jemanden sagt, dass er nicht über den Tellerrand sieht oder das er noch nicht einmal über den Tellerrand sehen kann ?
7
votes
4answers
526 views

Warum nicht Dativ in “Er bricht den Stab über ihn”?

Laut Duden soll bei dieser Redewendung der Akkusativ genommen werden: er brach den Stab über ihn (nicht ihm); Bei Google finden sich aber beide Varianten. Warum wird nun Akkusativ empfohlen?
7
votes
1answer
247 views

How to say 'learn by ear' in German?

In English we say someone can learn by ear when speaking of music or language. Is there a German equivalent?
6
votes
2answers
1k views

A German equivalent for “The devil's in detail”

I want a German equivalent for "The devil's in detail", Which literally means: "This plan sounds simple when you describe what needs to be done at a high level, but actually doing it will be very ...
6
votes
4answers
219 views

Is there a German expression for “out of my budget”?

Can I simply say "es ist aus meinem Budget"?
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Wie fragt man “Wie wäre es mit … 1 Uhr”?

Wie kann man eine Zeitangabe mit dem Ausdruck "wie wäre es mit" vorschlagen? "Wie wäre es mit um 1 Uhr?" -- zwei Präpositionen klingt seltsam an. "Wie wäre es mit 1 Uhr?" -- man riskiert die Antwort ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

What is an equivalent of English “piece of cake”?

How do you say in German something that is easy to do. I have found "ein Klacks" in my dictionary, but I have a great doubt about the meaning of the word and how to use it.
6
votes
5answers
505 views

Is there an idiomatic equivalent in German for “add insult to injury”?

Is there an idiomatic equivalent in German for "add insult to injury"? How close is it to its English counterpart as far as literal translation is concerned? add insult to injury: to make a bad ...
6
votes
2answers
464 views

How do you say “to bail somebody out of jail” in German?

My friend is in jail for burglary and to get him out, you have to pay 5,000 dollars. How do you say to bail someone out in German? Can I say Jmdn aus dem Gefängnis herausbringen or does it have to be ...
6
votes
2answers
153 views

Was bedeutet die Redewendung “jemandem noch aus den Ohren raus hängen”?

Ich lerne Deutsch, aber es ist nicht meine Muttersprache. Einmal schrieb mir jemand: Es wird dir noch aus den Ohren raus hängen. Ich möchte gerne wissen, was das bedeutet.
6
votes
4answers
399 views

How to say “pull the plug” in German?

A literal, physical translation of "we pulled the plug" is "Wir zogen den Stecker." But sometimes, this expression is used in a figurative sense We "pulled the plug" on the project. Is there a ...
6
votes
2answers
198 views

I would like to give a book to a German friend as a gift, what is an appropriate dedication sentence?

I would like to give a book of classical literature of my country, Iran, to a German friend who is a professor of mathematics and philosophy at Berlin university. I want to write a good memorial ...
6
votes
2answers
70 views

Ursprung von Baulöwe

Weiß jemand, woher der Begriff Baulöwe, laut Duden ein "Bauunternehmer oder Bauherr, der [mit zweifelhaften Methoden] durch Errichten, Verkaufen o. Ä. vieler Bauten großen Profit zu machen ...
6
votes
3answers
140 views

Does “gemacht” also mean “something done too artificially”?

I remember someone using the word "gemacht" do describe something that was done too artificially. (In this case it was a dance move that was supposed to be spontaneous but looked too pre-planned.) I ...
6
votes
2answers
44 views

Kann »von wegen« ein Zitat einführend neutral fungieren?

Öfters habe ich von wegen in einem Kontext gehört, welcher eine Erklärung von Dritten einleitet. Ich weiß aber nicht, ob das regional ist. Auf Redensarten-Index steht: fügt man hinzu, wenn man ...
6
votes
2answers
885 views

“Passen wie die Faust aufs Auge” bedeutet “total” oder “gar nicht zusammenpassen”?

In Wiktionary stehen die zwei höchstwidersprüchlichen Bedeutungen: Bedeutungen: [1] umgangssprachlich: ganz und gar nicht zusammenpassen [2] umgangssprachlich: wunderbar zusammenpassen ...
6
votes
1answer
224 views

Herkunft von “Ausnahmen bestätigen die Regel”

The idiom "Ausnahmen bestätigen die Regel" exists in English, too. The exception proves the rule. However, someone recently told me that this originally was based on the old meaning of "to ...
6
votes
2answers
198 views

Über den Ursprung der zu „einen Vogel haben“ zugeordneten Geste

Anstelle folgender Aussagen: Du hast einen Vogel, bei dir piept es wohl, usw. macht man manchmal eine Geste. Ich erkenne nur folgende Zeichen. Zeigefinger zur Stirn, genau wo die Schläfe ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

What is "to put things into public storage'' in German?

John is moving out of his apartment and he doesn't want to drag around all this stuff while looking for a house to settle into. He goes to a public storage and rents a unit to put his stuff in. What's ...
5
votes
4answers
491 views

What's the meaning of “zur Frau werden”?

I cam across the idiom: zur Frau werden - to become a woman I'm wondering what does it really mean. In what sense to become a woman?
5
votes
1answer
201 views

Translation of “Und ob”

Die wahre Landlust So früh aufstehen, so hart malochen, sich täglich die Finger schmutzig machen - will man das wirklich? Und ob, sagen vier Jungbauern, die sich ganz bewusst für diesen Beruf ...
5
votes
2answers
125 views

“It takes two to tango” in German

Is there an appropriate translation or an equivalent phrase for "it takes two to tango" in German? Gibt es eine passende Übersetzung oder eine äquivalente Redewendung für "it takes two to tango" in ...
5
votes
8answers
499 views

Best way of expressing “for all I know” in German

One English expression I particularly like is "for all I know". It has such a level of arbitrariness to it that is unlike any other German expression that is similar to it: For all I know, every ...
5
votes
4answers
783 views

Translation of the idiom “no harm, no foul” in German

Do similar figure of speech exist in German or should one translate it literally?
5
votes
2answers
680 views

Do people say “You're just being paranoid” in German?

"You're just being paranoid" is a very common put-down in English, used to dismiss people who are concerned about being treated unfairly. I wonder if people say the same thing in German. I have to ...
5
votes
2answers
377 views

An idiomatic German translation of the Bible

Is there a translation of at least the New Testament into German which uses modern vocabulary and idioms, similarly to the way The Message does in English?
5
votes
3answers
232 views

Nuance of “Verschlechterung” not captured by any English equivalent?

I know this will appear to be a repeat of a question I posted yesterday, but it is really a completely different question. I am wondering if there is a nuance to the word "Verschlechterung" which is ...
5
votes
1answer
289 views

“It's time to pluck a pigeon”

Während mir klar ist, was der Satz bedeuten soll, habe ich keine geeignete Weise gefunden den ins Deutsche zu übersetzen (wortwörtlich wäre ja Käse). Ideen? Edit: Bedeutung ist laut online ...
5
votes
2answers
320 views

Is “In der Pfeife rauchen” an idiom?

I have seen this phrase a couple times now and I'm not sure what it means. It was in the headline of an article on Der Spiegel online: Frauenfußball-WM: Das Gras? Kannst du in der Pfeife rauchen ...
5
votes
3answers
247 views

What is the origin of “den Bogen raus haben”?

Metaphorically, this phrase means something like "getting the hang of". But what is "Bogen" referring to, literally, in this case? (Come to think of it, I have no idea what "getting the hang of it" ...
5
votes
2answers
252 views

Anything better than “weltweit” for “All over the world”?

I would like to say something like, "You have really lived all over the world!" ...like in response to someone saying they've been to many different countries. I did a Google search for this and ...
5
votes
2answers
606 views

What does “halt das Schicksal auf” mean?

What does it mean: Halt das Schicksal auf, gib mir was einst war mein.
4
votes
6answers
859 views

How can we translate “Don't be a wuss (or cry-baby)” into German?

I'd like to know how should we translate "Don't be a wuss (or cry-baby)" into German? Which of these options would be the correct one?
4
votes
4answers
844 views

German equivalent of “It works”

In English there is an idiom: It works. Or more likely: That/It works for me. I think that the following is wrong, as arbeiten seems rather literal, but would it be a correct ...
4
votes
3answers
495 views

Does “paar” still mean “two items”? Words that have lost their original meaning

–Ich hätte gerne ein Paar Brötchen –Wie viele? That was (modulo trivialities) a conversation that surprised me. Of course –assuming the grammatical correctness of the sentences–, the baker ...
4
votes
3answers
131 views

Was versteht man unter einem “maßlosen Sinn”?

Ich habe bei dict.leo.org gerade (sinnfrei) nach den englischen Übersetzungen für Sinn gesucht und bin dabei auf etwas gestoßen, das ich erst nur komisch zu lesen fand. Und beim Sinnen über den Sinn ...
4
votes
4answers
606 views

Translation of “When the going gets tough, the tough get going”

"When the going gets tough, the tough get going" is a popular proverb in English. According to Wikipedia: The phrase is a play on words involving idiomatic (Proverb) and distinct meanings of ...
4
votes
4answers
208 views

Das geht aber nicht!

In a situation where one person is smoking in a smoke free area and the other person is trying to point it, that other person is saying Das geht aber nicht! I'm wondering, what does this ...
4
votes
1answer
307 views

“Thank you for your consideration” am Ende eines Bewerbungsschreibens

So könnte das Ende eines englischen Bewerbungsschreibens aussehen: Thank you for your consideration. Sincerely, John Doe Auf deutsch fällt mir nur ein Mit freundlichen Grüßen, ...
4
votes
2answers
581 views

“Leider, leider, sogt Beschneider”

I walked past a chess game in Munich, where someone had just played a very bad move. An old gentleman exclaimed: Leider, leider, sogt Beschneider. It's probable that I misheard a bit. I suppose ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Idiomatic equivalent for “I am afraid, I can't do that”

Is there an idiom which would convey I'm afraid I can't do that Literally translating, It would become Ich fürchte, ich kann das nicht tun Would that make sense?
4
votes
4answers
375 views

'Blau machen' and other phrases for absenteeism

I was watching a video about various idioms that have 'machen' in them. This included the sentence 'Er macht blau', which would formally translate into English as something like 'To be absent from ...
4
votes
2answers
358 views

Does “frech wie Oskar sein” have a negative connotation to it?

Does the following sentence have negative connotation? If it does, is there an equivalent without the negative connotation? „Du bist ja frech wie Oskar!“ As I searched, none of the following ...
4
votes
1answer
116 views

bei jemandem einen Stein im Brett haben

I have been undertaking a beginner's class in German. I have been picking up some idiomatic phrases as I go along and have comes across the following German construction: bei jemandem einen Stein ...
4
votes
2answers
150 views

Is it “einige vor den Kopf stoßen” or “einigen vor den Kopf stoßen”?

The whole sentence is: Mit dem Glauben an einen hinsichtlich der Präzision und Allmächtigkeit abgeschwächten Laplace'schen Dämon scheint man immer wieder einige(n?) Leuten vor den Kopf zu stoßen ...
4
votes
2answers
108 views

Woher kommt die Redewendung „mit dem linken Bein aufstehen“?

Ich steige immer mit dem linken Bein aus dem Bett. Die Bedeutung ist hier, dass ich eine schlechte Laune habe, wenn ich aufstehe; aber meine Frage ist, warum mit dem linken Bein, warum nicht mit ...
4
votes
2answers
213 views

What does it mean when it says “Volle Suppe”?

Is "Volle Suppe" a German idiom? And how would that translate into English?
4
votes
1answer
47 views

Die Arbeiten werden auf Nachweis ausgeführt

Die Arbeiten werden auf Nachweis ausgeführt Trying to translate a subcontractor quotation, I found this line, which appears to be some sort of generic term or condition but also a bit of an idiom ...