Questions tagged [expressions]

Redewendung – Questions about common expressions used in conversation and colloquial speech.

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1answer
50 views

Can't exactly understand a statement (Spaß und Freude vermitteln? and etc.)

Dieses Buch wird Ihnen Spaß und Freude am Entwickeln und Aufbauen – dem Basteln – elektronischer Schaltungen vermitteln und Sie animieren, aktiv und kreativ eigene Ideen zu verwirklichen. This ...
2
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3answers
129 views

Is this sentence still used or is it outdated/archaic?

I found this sentence on Duolingo, the English and German are as follows: "Which name does it bear?" "Welchen Namen trägt es?" Is it still used and if yes, in what context? I ...
5
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4answers
2k views

How would I say, “a story about the time that…” in German?

I assumed that it would be something like “(ich erzähle) eine Geschichte über das mal, in dem ich...“ but that doesn’t seem right. And the more I look up how to translate this idea, the more it seems ...
2
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2answers
138 views

Meaning of “an der Nase herumziehen” in Faust

Here are the first 11 verses in the "Nacht" scene, from Goethe's Faust I: FAUST Habe nun, ach! Philosophie, Juristerei und Medizin, Und leider auch Teologie Durchaus studiert, mit heißem ...
3
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2answers
4k views

In welchen Situationen wird “Alles Gute” verwendet?

Manchmal benutzte oder hörte ich es bei Geburtstagswünschen, Krankheit oder mutmachend, freundlich Aufwiedersehen sagend. Kann man Alles Gute in diesen verschiedenen Kontexten anwenden oder nur bei ...
9
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4answers
3k views

What is “Hacke, Spitze, eins, zwei, drei”?

I’m currently learning the German language as I’m new to Germany. Learning something new from the public every day is really cool! Yesterday I happened to hear bunch of kids playing across the street ...
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3answers
148 views

How to say: “The film/series came out yesterday”

Specifically, I want to know the correct verb in German for "to come out". It doesn't matter if the movie came out or the pastor is coming out sometime in the future. I guess I can always ...
15
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2answers
236 views

Bei XY unterm Sofa?

Ich hatte in mein Notizbuch diesen Ausdruck geschrieben: "Wie bei Heini Geiger unterm Sofa" (C'est le bazar!, Es ist sehr unordentlich) Es scheint unmöglich zu sein, mithilfe von Google mehr über ...
6
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2answers
1k views

German word/expression meaning something like “breakfast engineer”?

Many years ago someone I worked with who was a German speaker (possibly Swiss or Austrian rather than German) told me there was an expression for what I think he described as a "breakfast ...
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2answers
97 views

Why is dafür needed here?

I've encountered the following sentence: Hier ist erstmals ein Bewusstsein dafür entstanden, dass es sich bei der Erde um ein relativ kleines System handelt. My question is, why is dafür even needed ...
3
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1answer
94 views

German expression for “learning by ear”?

I saw this expression "learning from ear" on DW, similar to the better know expression "playing by ear". I want to know what the equivalent for this is in German. Both expressions ...
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2answers
70 views

‘After all’ in connection with quotations

So there are a few ways to translate ‘after all’ into German; ‘schließlich’ meaning ‘finally’, ‘trotz’ meaning ‘in spite of’, ‘immerhin’ meaning ‘at least’ or ‘anyhow’ (among other things). But I’m ...
6
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3answers
1k views

Räte-Ideen: looking for a translation

Wie würden Sie "Räte-Ideen" verstehen/übersetzen? das konnte nur in den Räte-Ideen erscheinen I understand, something such as, "it could only appear in simplistic classwork essays&...
5
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1answer
665 views

Expression of woman sinking in the mud and waving

Back in 2016 one of my German friends (who since then passed away) used to say an expression in German that seemed common in North Rhine-Westphalia (at least in that familiar circle they all knew it). ...
5
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1answer
193 views

Ist doch deide!

"Ist doch deide!", sagte Kali und klang ehrlich begeistert. (Theresa Hannig, Die Optimierer, 2017) I cannot find anywhere the word "deide" is it some dialect? What does "Ist ...
2
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1answer
64 views

Meaning of “stehend inne”

What is the meaning of this sentence: Samson hielt noch in der Tür stehend inne. I translated the words and it is: Samson was holding on the door standing within which does not have any sense.
11
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4answers
375 views

Deutsche Redewendung für „Sit around the campfire and sing Kumbaya“

Ich habe nach einem Äquivalent auf Deutsch gesucht, konnte aber keines finden. Das einzige, das mir einfällt ist Abwarten und Tee trinken, aber ich glaube nicht, dass dies den Sarkasmus und die ...
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3answers
106 views

Gibt es eine beispielhafte Beschreibung der im Bayrischen gebräuchlichen internationalen Lautschrift?

Im Bayrischen gibt es einige gebräuchliche Laute, die in der Verschriftlichung nur schwer abbildbar sind. So zum Beispiel den schon fast klischeehaften Oachkatzlschwoaf, zu dem de.wictionary,org ...
2
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3answers
213 views

How do I say “show someone a good time” in German?

Can I say "jemandem eine gute Zeit zeigen" (They showed me a good time = Sie haben mir eine gute Zeit gezeigt), or is that clearly something borrowed from English? If this expression is odd/...
0
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1answer
95 views

How to translate the expression excited / thrilled to do or say something into German?

Thrilled and excited are adjectives you will hear and see often when someone is talking very positively about something or someone. We are thrilled to present... I am excited to be here in... We ...
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3answers
967 views

Is there any reason but aesthetics for the use of “dann mit” here?

A very famous song says: Ein kleines Edelweiss, das bringst du mir dann mit I am trying to understand what is the role of dann mit here. For me, if the phrase didn't have these words the meaning would ...
5
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1answer
199 views

What could be the origin of this dialectical expression?

In South Brazil's Hunsrückischer dialect, there is a very known expression (even used by some portuguese speakers) which sounds approximately Das s mu schlimm (There is hardly any examples of written ...
3
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1answer
527 views

Meaning of “ab damit”

I have heard the following sentence in the TV series "How to Sell Drugs Online (Fast)": Ab damit Context: two friends have set up an online drug shop and have just sent the first orders by ...
3
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1answer
94 views

What does the phrase “[jemanden] auf den baum bringen” mean and where does it come from?

I am translating a Till Eulenspiegel story from German to English, and I encountered the following sentence (source, see section 22]: Eulenspiegels Frechheit brachte den braven Mann vollends auf den ...
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2answers
2k views

Sentences to start a presentation

I am trying to prepare a presentation. I need to find some good starting sentences. I will present this to my teachers and they won't know the topic of presentation. I should explain it. I used: ...
23
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4answers
23k views

What is the literal meaning of “Hau ab!”?

If you want to tell somebody to go away you could shout: "Hau ab!" However this is considered as not very polite, much like "Get lost!", or "F*** off!". I am wondering where German "Hau ab" comes ...
3
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2answers
168 views

Ehrlich(keit) währt am längsten

I'm sure most people here are familiar with the saying Ehrlich währt am längsten, which is roughly equivalent to "Honesty is the best Policy." (The literal, and alliterative, translatation ...
3
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3answers
120 views

In the “sowohl A als auch B” expression, which of A/B is stressed?

In the sentence below, "Ich bin sowohl in Norwegen als auch in Schweden gewesen." which word is stressed? I mean, in nuance, isn't it that one is regarded obvious and the other is regarded ...
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1answer
52 views

“Es” in a sentence

Manche Menschen lernen es nie. vs Manche Menschen lernen nie. Is "es" required in this case? Are there expressions that must have "es" in their structure?
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7answers
260k views

How does a German say “Nice to meet you”?

In English it is common to reply with "Nice to meet you" when you were introduced to somebody. Likewise you say "Was nice to meet you" on leaving. Are there any similar phrases a German would use in ...
25
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6answers
6k views

What is the German equivalent of the English “aka”?

In English, the abbreviation aka means "also known as". A literal German translation might be "auch bekannt wie". Is this, in fact, the correct German equivalent? And is the abbreviation ABW (or the ...
3
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1answer
103 views

Meaning of “XXXX halt” [duplicate]

I had the following exchange while chatting: I did not understand the word "Futterpampe", so I asked, and the she answered (i think) that it means "Cat food". But what confused me was the way she ...
5
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1answer
7k views

Why “ein Uhr” and not “eins Uhr”

Why is it that "one o'clock" is ein Uhr and not eins Uhr? It is understandable that it's not eine Uhr, since we're not referring to one clock. But why is it that we're just using ein here?
7
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2answers
543 views

Is there a difference between “Schuld haben” and “schuld sein”?

There are two expression which a very similar in German Schuld haben and schuld sein Is there a difference in meaning, maybe a subtle one? Why is the first "Schuld" capitalized and the second ...
1
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3answers
621 views

Not the brightest light on the christmas tree

I vaguely remember a German expression that means "not the sharpest tool in the shed" that can be literally translated to "not the brightest light on the Christmas tree". Is there actually a saying ...
7
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4answers
1k views

In the sentence “der hatte doch eine Brille”, why do we use 'der' instead of 'er'?

Sie: „Der Mann da, das ist doch Walter.“ Er: „Walter? Nee, der hatte doch eine Brille.“ Sie: „Doch, das ist Walter.“ Can I say "er hatte doch eine Brille" instead of "der hatte doch eine ...
5
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1answer
476 views

Sicher sein + etwas? [closed]

Welche der folgenden Formulierungen sind korrekt? Worin unterscheiden sie sich? Wenn alle drei korrekt sind, kann ich meine Wahl durch ein anderes Substantiv ersetzen? a1. Ich bin mir meiner Wahl ...
1
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3answers
189 views

“Kaputt gehen” meaning “to become defect” in a more formal way

The expression "kaputt gehen" for the meaning "to become defect" is somewhat colloquial, and I would like to express it more formal, as in a letter to report a problem. Der Behälter ist gerade ...
5
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2answers
202 views

“da … wohl jemand”: Is this a sarcastic set expression with the meaning “a certain someone”?

Hm, da ist wohl jemand ziemlich gereizt. = "Someone ... looks irritated there." Da hat sich wohl jemand zu früh gefreut. = "Someone ... got their hopes up too soon there." I ...
4
votes
1answer
384 views

Use cases and explainig for “Mahlzeit”

I have seen that people use the expression "Mahlzeit" before eating, but I also have heard them use in another occasions, even though I did not understand at the time why. What are the use cases for ...
3
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6answers
291 views

What are the German equivalents of “blow away the cobwebs”?

We were having a conversation in French after a concert, and I was wondering how I'd express the same idea in German. I would have said: Ich habe die letzten Tage damit verbracht, eingepfercht in ...
2
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2answers
2k views

“halten VON” vs. “halten FÜR”

Ich habe die Antwort von der Verschiedenheit von "halten von" und "halten für" nicht gefunden... Eigentlich, habe ich manche Erklärungen gelesen, aber sie haben keinen direkten Vergleich darüber ...
1
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1answer
105 views

Is “als Kind gerne” an idiom?

In the Slow German podcast #185, she has Alexander beschäftigte sich als Kind gerne mit Insekten, Steinen und Pflanzen. I translate "als Kind gerne" as, "as children are want to do". But a more ...
8
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5answers
977 views

How is the casino term “a high roller” commonly expressed in German?

We were having a conversation at a casino, and I said: Normalerweise ist es nicht meine Art, um große Einsätze zu spielen. Ich bin vermutlich einfach von Haus aus keine Spielernatur. Aber wenn ich ...
2
votes
3answers
117 views

In German, how to say: “when you just saw an awe-inspiring example to follow, which made you want to be just like that person”?

We were having a conversation in French about a certain businessman who visited our hospital, and I said jokingly: Je viens de le croiser dans le couloir et il a tout du homme d’affaires. Un jour, ...
4
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7answers
2k views

How to emphasise the insignificance of someone/thing – besides using “klein”

We were having a conversation in French about asteroids, and I said: Je ne suis peut-être pas expert en astronomie, mais... Qu’est-ce qu’un petit humain de rien du tout peut contre quelque chose d’...
3
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4answers
400 views

How is the idea of “two people having a heated argument” idiomatically expressed in German?

I was having a conversation with my friend in another language, and I was wondering how in German I'd express the idea of "two people having a heated argument where one of them throws a tantrum and, ...
8
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7answers
972 views

How to render “have ideas above his station” into German

In conversation, one of my colleagues said: He's thinking of making advances to the hospital director's daughter. If you ask me, he's got ideas above his station. He's not set up for life or ...
5
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6answers
859 views

Why does “auf der Strecke bleiben” mean “to fall by the wayside”?

What is the literal meaning of "auf der Strecke bleiben"? What is the link between the literal meaning and the meaning "to fall by the wayside"?
3
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3answers
174 views

Does “nur zu” have the same encouraging tone as “more power to you” in English?

Talking with my colleague about reading though an extra-thick medical book, I said jokingly: Zum Gelehrten tauge ich wohl nicht, was? Wenn du es schaffst, auch nur einen dieser Wälzer durchzulesen, ...

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