I am looking for someone to help me translate an old term we used to lovingly call my great-grandfather whose parents emigrated from Austria. When I was a child, I only knew him as Great-Grandpa Ozenblazen. (His true last name was Kren) I’m trying to figure out what this means. English pronunciation is AH-zen-blah-zen. I’ve been told it could mean silly or crazy in German but I wanted to know if this is true, if this is/was a common phrase, and how to properly spell it. He was a very sweet, silly man who loved being goofy with his children and grandchildren and was happy all the time. Thanks for your help!

  • 1
    I'm sorry, this sounds like a family nickname without recognized meaning. Certainly doesn't ring a bell for me.
    – Ingmar
    Jul 10 at 4:49

1 Answer 1


How exactly is this name pronounced? You wrote it with two "z". This letter is pronounced as "ts" in German, like "zz" in "pizza" or "ts" in "tsar" or "cats". If this is the correct pronunciation of the letter "z", then the part "-blazen" sounds like the verb "platzen" (to burst, to pop, to explode) which is pronounced with a short "a". (Austrian people make no big difference between the pronunciation of "b" and "p").

But usually the letter "z" is pronounced as a voiced s in English, but you said that this man was from Austria, but people from Austria do not use this sound. They always use an unvoiced s which is written as "s" in english. And then the part "-blazen" sounds like "blasen" (to blow).

But I have no idea what the first part "Ozen-" could mean. Depending on what was said before, it could sound like "otzen" or "osen", but there aren't even similar words, neither in standard German nor in any Austrian dialect I know. And that makes me suspect that there was an extra consonant before the "o" that got lost, and if it was lost, it must have been an unobtrusive consonant like "h". And "Hosen" is a German word. It means "trousers" or "pants". But that does not fit very well with "blasen" (to blow).

But when you add an "h" to "otzen" you get "Hotzen", which by itself is not a valid German word, but it is the first part of a name: Der Räuber Hotzenplotz or in English: The Robber Hotzenplotz. This is a fictional character of a children's book, that was published in 1962.

The robber Hotzenplotz is a big man with a deep voice and thick beard, and he is not very smart. It is very easy to trick and catch him with very simple tricks.

  • Könnte es auch "Ochsenblasen" sein? Nicht, dass ich mir darunter etwas vorstellen könnte, a) als Piefke und b) als Stadtmensch. Jul 10 at 19:45
  • 2
    Sounds like Hotzenplotz to me, too. Jul 10 at 21:20

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