The quotation below is copied verbatim from the closed-captioning of the latest episode1 of Tatort:

Da spielt die Brass-Band und die Ozupftn spielen auch.

It is possible that Ozupftn is a typo, or an abbreviation of sorts.

Can someone tell me what this word means? If it is an abbreviation, what is the full form? If it is a typo, what is the correct (and hopefully Google-able) form?

1 Freies Land, at around 28:44.

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    It is Bavarian dialect and literally means Angezupften, which is likely one or more string instruments as e.g. zither.
    – guidot
    Jun 3, 2018 at 20:10
  • @guidot Why is this a comment and not an answer?
    – Arsak
    Jun 4, 2018 at 7:17

2 Answers 2


This is a pun on "O'zapft [is']", i.e. the act of opening a beer barrel. As Guidot pointed out, in a Bavarian dialect it sounds rather similar to "zupfen", which means plucking the strings of an instrument.

To provide some context, this is from a "Tatort" episode that plays out in (and it produced in) Bavaria, context is that some young men want to go to the city to party (or as their father alleges, to go on a binge, which has them protest that they just want to listen to the two bands mentioned), and "O'zapft is'" is a phrase typically used when the first keg of beer is tapped to open large festival (think Oktoberfest).

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    I'm not convinced of a pun and this hypothesis (as well as your first sentence) does contribute little to the explanation.
    – guidot
    Jun 3, 2018 at 20:52
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    @guidot, go ahead. Dies ist ein freies Land.
    – user2508
    Jun 3, 2018 at 20:54
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    @guidot The pun was the 1st thing coming to mind (I am a native Bavarian). Jun 3, 2018 at 21:24
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    Sorry, but I do not see a closer connection between Ozupfn and Ozapfn as between Anzupfen and Anzapfen. So in my opinion this is not the point of the pun. Jun 3, 2018 at 22:04
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    Sorry, but I don't see any connection with "O'zapft is!" either. "Ozapft" and "ozupft" are just the Bavarian versions of "angezapft" and "angezupft" with no further connection. The saying "O'zupft is!" is actuallz occasionally used when celebrating the start of the hops harvest in the meaning "it has been plucked!".
    – jarnbjo
    Jun 4, 2018 at 17:43

In the audio track, there is one word more:

Da spielt die Minger Brass-Band und die Ozupftn spielen auch.

"Minger" (could probably also be transcribed as "Minga") is bavarian for "Münchner", and while "die Ozupftn" certainly corresponds to "die Angezupften" in standard german, the context makes it pretty clear that both are proper names (of two bands playing da).

Anzupfen (to pluck at sth.) hints at string instruments.

However, grammatically, die Ozupftn / die angezupften is a Partizip Perfekt Passiv, thus the bearers of that name are literally the ones having been plucked at, not the ones doing the plucking.

According to Johann Christoph Adelung: Grammatisch-kritisches Wörterbuch der Hochdeutschen Mundart, anzupfen is used in the upper german dialects to express the meaning of anzapfen, which in turn means to pester/bother/taunt someone. So, literally, the band calls itself the pestered ones.

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