I noticed a german headline today that seemed like it might contain a somewhat common idiom (although maybe I'm wrong) of which I haven't been able to find a definition or explanation online:

"Wenn ich zurück nach Polen muss, dann gehe ich halt"

So the potential idiom in question is:

dann gehe ich halt


gehe ich halt

…or some similar variation. I've found some other examples of this phrase online, but no explanation.

I gather from the context of the linked article above it probably means something like, "I'm out of here". But it seems a bit strange to me that the phrase contains halt, which seems to indicate the opposite of rapid movement.

So is this a commonly (or uncommonly) used idiom or phrase? What does it mean, and how is it used?

  • You got the wrong word halt, consult your dictionary again. – Carsten S Jun 29 '16 at 7:28

Basically, "halt" expresses unimpressedness.

Juhu, wir sind Weltmeister! = We are the champions!

Dann sind wir halt Weltmeister. = So we're the champions. Big deal.

  • "Dann gehe ich eben" would be equivalent. – Thorsten Dittmar Jun 29 '16 at 8:01
  • I always think of it as “just”. In this case, “then I’ll just go”. What about “es ist halt so”? I would say “that’s just how it is”. – Mawg says reinstate Monica Dec 10 '18 at 8:38

"halt" in this context has a meaning of "I am not happy with it but I will do". Similar to "so what" in English.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.