I'm translating an old German newspaper article and the word "aufrollen" is used in what appears to be a colloquial manner, since the literal meaning "to roll (up)" doesn't quite fit. Here is the sentence fragment in question:

"... Probleme, die durch die Schlacht aufgerollt worden sind, ..."

My guess is that it either means "problems that have been raised by the battle" or "problems that have been decided by the battle" but I haven't been able to determine which, or if it really does mean "rolled up" here. The article is about "the course and effects" of the battle so I feel like either meaning could be reasonable.

2 Answers 2


This has nothing to do with colloquial level, but is simply an additional meaning of a verb with a multitude of meanings. My Großes Wörterbuch der deutschen Sprache offers (among others) these meanings

  • straightening something, which was curled together, e. g. a map scroll, or a flag ( I guess this is the meaning you found)
  • winding something up onto a roll, like a thread
  • opening something sliding on rolls (a sliding door)
  • especially for Frage/Problem aufrollen: touch something, discuss something thoroughly, attempt to clarify something. I agree with Christian, that it can mean uncovering a previously existing but neglected/covered problem.
  • 1
    Also, "etwas nochmal aufrollen" means to discuss something again even though it was supposedly settled. "Müssen wir das jetzt echt noch einmal aufrollen?" --> "Do we really have to go over this again?" This definitely has a negative connotation.
    – Raphael
    Commented May 21, 2015 at 10:07

I think "problems that have been raised by the battle" is okay, but I would suggest "problems that have been raised again by battle".

What it means is that the problems have been there, but they somehow disappeared. Due to the battle the problems became current again.

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