In the swiss german song for children Joggeli sött go Birli schüttle I came accross the word resoniere of which the written german equivalent should (probably) be resonieren.

[...] Do goht de Meischter sälber us, und foht a resonniere. [...]

I don't know what the meaning of this word is, perhaps it's of french origin. From the song's context, I'd assume that the word means something like force somebody to do something. Is this correct?

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    Thank you René for this question. I only just now looked at your link for the children's song and there was something familiar about it. Well I found this web page and it turns out it really is the Chad Gadya sung at the seder. This brings back childhood memories :) Commented Apr 23, 2012 at 18:47

2 Answers 2


The word in question is probably räsonieren:

  1. (bildungssprachlich) sich wortreich äußern, sich [überflüssigerweise] über etwas auslassen
  2. (umgangssprachlich) seinem Unmut, seiner Unzufriedenheit durch [ständiges] Schimpfen Ausdruck geben
  3. (veraltet) vernünftig reden, Schlüsse ziehen Duden

This means: to make wordy explanations, to argue, to rant, to draw conclusions.

The Swiss dictionary Schweizerischen Idiotikon lists another meaning that is close to the French origin raisonneé "to give thought to something":

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    To reason scheint mir auch oft nicht nur passend, sondern auch vom gleichen Stamm. Commented Apr 25, 2012 at 13:58

The English translation I have used in the past is "resonate."

EDIT: I have been advised by someone whose opinion I respect that this was a "nice guess, you tried to help, nothing wrong with that, but this is a wrong answer."

I now believe that "räsonieren," as in Takkat's answer, is a more reasonable rendering of resoniere than resonieren, given the context. Accordingly, a better translation might be to scold or to rant.

  • Sorry but that's just wrong. See Takkat's Answer. Commented Apr 23, 2012 at 17:35
  • @Eugene Seidel: I typed resonieren into Google Translate for a German-English translation, and it gave me "resonate," which is what I suspected. Now Takkat changed the form of the word to räsonieren and drew his own conclusions from that change. But I didn't make a change from O.P.'s "resonieren."
    – Tom Au
    Commented Apr 23, 2012 at 17:43
  • You wouldn't have made that mistake if you could guess at the meaning of the CH-German quote: "Do goht de Meischter sälber us, und foht a resonniere." My translation (it may not be 100% accurate but it will be close enough): DE-German: Da geht der Meister selbst hinaus und fängt an zu räsonieren. English: And now the master himself is going out and starting on one of his rants. Commented Apr 23, 2012 at 17:49
  • @EugeneSeidel: Yes, the master could be "ranting." He could also be "responding" (resonating) to something Hundli, Birli, Joggeli, Chamblis, or the others said or did. It's even possible that "resonieren" means "ranting" in this context. But Google Translate tells me that it means "resonate" generally.
    – Tom Au
    Commented Apr 23, 2012 at 18:13
  • "resonating" is not "responding". Apologies but I thought that the purpose of SE was for "experts" (= people who know what they are talking about) to handle competently questions from people seeking advice; and I don't see the ability to use Google Translate as sufficient. So -1 from me. And while I'm at it, I'll change my rough translation to: "And now the master himself is going out and scolding them." This scolding finally does the trick: the butcher will slaughter the calf, the calf will drink the water, and so on. That this is impossible is why kids love the song! Commented Apr 23, 2012 at 18:25

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