What is the etymology of the word "Aufhocker"? Is this word commonly used today? Anything interesting to say about this word?

  • 8
    You should tell us where you found the word.
    – Paul Frost
    Feb 22, 2020 at 0:35
  • 1
    Since @infinitezero did give the context in his answer, I don't consider it necessary to close for needs clarity Feb 22, 2020 at 21:15

1 Answer 1


I never heard the word before, so I had to look it up.

Geist, der dem einsamen Wanderer von hinten auf die Schulter springt, ihn würgt u. niederdrückt
Ghost that jumps on the back/shoulder of a lonely wanderer that strangles him/pushes him down

It is referenced in folklore

The word comes from the verb hocken (to crouch/squat/sit). A person who "hocks" can be referred to as a Hocker (although quite unconventional). Together with the word auf (here: on top of something), Aufhocker gets the meaning of "somebody who gets on somebody/something and sits/squats on top of it".

  • Unconventional? suppose the Stubenhocker really is a double entendre describing a person as a piece of furniture (not to say Möbel-Stück). That was my first association as a child, indeed.
    – vectory
    Feb 22, 2020 at 21:35
  • by the way, cp English hug. A person who hugs can be described as anhänglich, viz Klammeraffe, etc. Also choke, in the same sense. I'm saying the allusion to hocken "squat" may be accidental. However, aufgesessen (einem Irrtum aufgesessen ~ getäuscht worden), besessen (see possessed) compare well, except that sitzen is extremely polysemous so no good indication. Google offers aufhocken among translations for aufsitzen 2 auf ein Motorad aufsteigen -- so it seems to be not totally obscure.
    – vectory
    Feb 22, 2020 at 21:40
  • I meant the word by itself. You rarely (if ever) call a person a "Hocker". Stubenhocker as a compositum is much more common, I agree. Feb 22, 2020 at 21:43
  • cp perhaps also to hike, whence I like to derive hooker (prostitute waiting on the way side, walking the line). Also compare sich irgendwo einhaken. PS: small correction, google said 1.b auf ein Fahrzeug aufsteigen, and 1.a auf ein Pferd ... which puts things into perspective for aufsteigen.
    – vectory
    Feb 22, 2020 at 21:55

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