Müller Lümmer frühstückt schüsselweise grünes Gemüse.

What does the bold word within the tongue twister mean? I cannot find the meaning in any dictionary.

  • Seems to be a sentence containing as many ü's as possible. That is to say: One should not worry too much about the meaning of the sentence, it is a 'Sprachspiel'. Commented Dec 22, 2020 at 22:36
  • ein Zungenbrecher, besser gesagt @RalfJoerres
    – ludgo
    Commented Dec 24, 2020 at 10:18
  • Für mich sind Zungenbrecher schwer auszusprechende Sätze oder Phrasen (Brautkleid bleibt Brautkleid und Blaukraut bleibt Blaukraut.) Aber viele Deutschlerner haben überhaupt Probleme mit dem 'ü', so gesehen .... Commented Dec 24, 2020 at 13:42

2 Answers 2


It means that he eats large portions of vegetable. A "Schüssel" is a bowl, bigger than an ordinary dish. I do not think one should take it in the literal sense that he actually fills some bowls and eats the vegetable contained in them, but we should understand it in the sense of "very much".

The ending weise occurs also in "massenweise" which could be alternatively be used:

Müller Lümmer frühstückt massenweise grünes Gemüse.

See also here.

  • 3
    You might translate this as "bowls of", or "by the bowl", or even "bowls and bowls of"; some unspecified amount but at least several bowls full, though one would expect a certain amount of hyperbole in a statement like this.
    – RDBury
    Commented Dec 20, 2020 at 18:06

It's a combination of the suffix -weise, which can be used to form an indication of quantity, and Schüssel, which simply means bowl.

So literally schüsselweise means he eats some number of bowls of green vegetables.

In a recipe, for example, you might read man gebe das Mehl löffelweise hinzu, meaning add the flour spoon by spoon.

In another variation there is zent­ner­wei­se, which simply means a lot, and comes from Zentner, an old unit of weight.

  • 4
    I'd say -weise is manner, not quantity (the noun specifies the quantity).
    – David Vogt
    Commented Dec 20, 2020 at 11:07
  • 3
    @DavidVogt That might be a good literal translation, but I was speaking about its use. See Duden, for example, which also says "wird mit Substantiven zur Bildung von Adverbien verwendet, die dann eine Maß- oder Mengeneinheit ausdrücken".
    – idmean
    Commented Dec 20, 2020 at 11:14
  • 2
    Actually, I misspoke. The noun itself does not express a quantity, but a unit of measurement. I wonder how the adverb can also be a unit of measurement? What does -weise add, if not manner (as indicated by the paraphrase given by Duden in, Schüsseln, nach Schüsseln).
    – David Vogt
    Commented Dec 20, 2020 at 12:53
  • @DavidVogt: I don't agree: unit of measurement is tightly coupled to concerned quantity, otherwise one would use a different unit. This is even more so for a unit specifically invented for a sentence. So eimerweise suggests, that we are talking about a (unspecified) multiple of 10 litres and not about 0.4 l e. g. of milk to be added to a cake.
    – guidot
    Commented Dec 20, 2020 at 16:55

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