Is there a German equivalent to "I rest my case, your honor". It is something typically said by the defense or prosecution in court when they are ready with questioning a witness.

  • 3
    it would be helpful if you'd also say what this expressions means in that context.
    – Eller
    Oct 11 '18 at 7:15
  • 9
    Please note that the US American judicial system and rules for court procedures are fundamentally different from German (and other European) ones. Phrases used at court in the USA refer strictly to the procedural rules there, and therefore cannot be applied at court in Germany. The only use-case I see is, as others already noted, a possible translation of dialogues in a movie. Oct 11 '18 at 8:34
  • 2
    Can your question also be phrased as: »What do defence lawyers and prosecutors in court procedures say to conclude their pleadings (or other oral contributions) and indicate that they have finished speaking«? Oct 11 '18 at 8:49
  • 5
    What use-case are you interested in? Literal use in a court of law or as a figure of speech? The latter will have different, interesting answers. Oct 11 '18 at 12:52
  • 1
    @phoog A German equivalent (regarding the function of the phrase in a procedure) could then be: "Die Beweisaufnahme wird hiermit geschlossen." However, this is a statement that only the judge can make, not one of the parties. Oct 11 '18 at 16:48

Lets take a look what "I rest my case" means

Cambridge Dictionary says:

said when you believe that something that has just happened or been said proves that you are right or telling the truth ​

also: "my/the case rests" said by lawyers in a law court when they have finished the explanation of their case

Urban Dictionary gives this explanation:

To say "I rest my case" means therefore that, as far as you are concerned, you've done more than enough to prove your point, and need say no more.

As your question refers to a court room we have to consider what christian wrote in his comment. German and american court rules are very different. Because of that you would translate this sentence differently when used in a german court room or in a movie that takes place in an american court room.

For example: "Your honor" translates to "Euer Ehren" which would be used in a dubbed movie, but a german judge is adressed "Herr/Frau Vorsitzende(r)".

So lets just look at the "I rest my case" part You have to look at the context, but in (a court scenario) it can be translated with

  • Damit schließe ich meine/die Beweisführung ab
  • Damit schließe ich mein/das Plädoyer ab
  • Keine weiteren Fragen

or more colloquial

  • Damit wäre alles/genug gesagt
  • Weitere Worte/Fragen sind überflüssig

or very colloquial (don't use in court)

  • 2
    "Ich schließe mein Plädoyer ab" is what you would say if you want to announce that your speech is finished soon. If you want to say that you are finished you would say e.g. "Damit ist mein Plädoyer beendet" or even "Danke für Ihre Aufmerksamkeit".
    – RHa
    Oct 11 '18 at 12:39
  • @RHa you are right. I will edit it
    – mtwde
    Oct 11 '18 at 12:43
  • 9
    I like the inclusion of “Ich habe fertig” but since this is a German learning site you should definitely include the caveat that this is not only informal but in fact incorrect German. Ideally explain where it comes from. Oct 11 '18 at 12:54
  • 1
    Flasche leer... youtube.com/watch?v=OCFj9lf8IQE But I agree with @KonradRudolph, this is incorrect German, although very famous Oct 11 '18 at 14:13
  • 1
    The dictionary definitions you cite are not appropriate for the courtroom context. In the courtroom, this phrase denotes a formal conclusion of the phase of the trial in which one side presents its case to the court. In fact, it's unusual to use the first person singular in a court, because the speaker is usually a lawyer representing another party. "The prosecution rests" or "the defense rests" would be more usual.
    – phoog
    Oct 11 '18 at 16:25

In German versions of American movies or TV serials you can often hear the phrase "Keine weiteren Fragen, Euer Ehren." I would guess that this phrase is used when in the original the lawyer said "I rest my case, your honor".

In a German court a lawyer does not address the judge with "Euer Ehren" but typically with "Herr Vorsitzender"/"Frau Vorsitzende".

  • 2
    Nach einer kurzen Suche scheint die Phrase aber auch zum Abschluss des Eröffnungsvortrags oder des Plädoyers gebraucht zu werden - im Sinne von "Ich bin fertig."
    – IQV
    Oct 11 '18 at 7:44
  • Why would the German translators use "Euer Ehren" when it appears (your answer and mtwde's) that this is not really used, and one should use "Vorsitzender" instead?
    – BruceWayne
    Oct 11 '18 at 16:25
  • 1
    In US courts, "no more questions" indicates that one side or the other is done examining a particular witness. This is different from resting the case, which indicates that the party has no more evidence to present in the trial. Translating "I rest my case" as "keine weiteren Fragen" would be incorrect.
    – phoog
    Oct 11 '18 at 16:31
  • 1
    @BruceWayne perhaps to retain the elements of difference between the legal systems. In Dutch, they typically refer to the US Secretary of State as the "minister van buitenlandse zaken" (foreign minister), which always seems horribly wrong to me.
    – phoog
    Oct 11 '18 at 16:34
  • 1
    @phoog - Ohh! They use "Euer Ehren" when translating an American courtoom. Duh, that makes sense.
    – BruceWayne
    Oct 11 '18 at 17:07

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy