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72 votes

How come that “stimmt so” means “keep the change”?

The verb "stimmen" means "to be correct". "Stimmt so" is short for "es stimmt so" or "der Betrag stimmt so", which means "it's correct like that" or "the amount is correct like that", or more ...
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46 votes

"Technically," I'm not supposed to . .

In short, I would use one of these normalerweise genau genommen streng genommen
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  • 14.1k
40 votes

Is there a German equivalent for "self defeating"?

A possibility to express "leading away from agoal instead of towards it" would be kontraproduktiv "Self defeating" literally translated is "selbstzerstörerisch", but this would not express the ...
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40 votes

What is the equivalent of "if you say so" in German?

Short answer: Wenn du meinst. or Wie du meinst.
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35 votes

Is there a German equivalent for "self defeating"?

We also have the idioms ein Eigentor schießen (colloquial) sich ins [eigene] Knie schießen (colloquial) der Schuss geht nach hinten los (colloquial) sich ins eigene Fleisch schneiden (...
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34 votes
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"Don't all shout at once" in German

The most literal translation would be Ruft nicht alle auf einmal. But I wouldn't use a verb probably. I don't know why but that would sound unnatural or at least it doesn't sound ironic or funny ...
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33 votes
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What does “Behinderter Lehrer ever” mean?

You are right with all your assumptions. The word ever is the English word; so the insult was formed by mixing German and English – which is not too unusual and probably seemed more “cool” to the ...
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32 votes
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What's the German expression for 'In a nutshell'

Posible translations for »in a nutshell« are: in (aller) Kürze zusammengefasst kurz gefasst kurz und bündig (plus a few more) There is no term containing the German word »Nussschale« that ...
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32 votes

What is the German idiom or expression for when someone is being hypocritical against their own teachings?

There's a related touch-your-own-nose idiom sich an die eigene Nase fassen saying that someone should first clean up their own behavior before criticizing others. Fass dir mal an die eigene ...
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31 votes
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Literal meaning of: “Es ist noch kein Meister vom Himmel gefallen”

Perhaps you understand it rephrased like this: Noch kein Meister ist vom Himmel gefallen. While this is not the idiomatic wording, it says exactly the same. If you know some German, you'll ...
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  • 11.9k
31 votes

What is the German idiom or expression for when someone is being hypocritical against their own teachings?

Practice what you preach is expressed as a deadpan statement in German: (Jaja,) Wasser predigen, aber Wein trinken. You should read your own book could be translated as Halt dich doch (selbst ...
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  • 46.4k
30 votes
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Meaning of "die Kurve kriegen"

Die Kurve kriegen is a widely used idiomatic phrase indicating that someone managed to break a negative developement/trend and get back on track. The image is someone driving along a road which takes ...
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  • 4,758
30 votes
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Is "Schmeckt es Sie?" correct?

The only correct form is Schmeckt es Ihnen? Another example: Das Brötchen (Subj.) schmeckt dem Kind (Dat. Obj) Schmeckt das Brötchen dem Kind (not das Kind)? “Schmeckt es Sie” is ...
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30 votes
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Is there a German equivalent to the saying "to be in love with the sound of one's own voice"?

There is the standard phrase ... sich selbst gerne reden hören (literally meaning to like to listen to oneself talking) which is quite close. Your sentence then would read Er hört sich selbst gerne ...
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  • 24.8k
28 votes
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Meaning of 'ran' in German?

It's short for heran. Same as raus, rein, rauf, runter, rüber. Nun (gehen wir) mal (he)ran an die Arbeit. (Geh) (he)ran an den Speck! These use an implicit gehen as another complication. Geh nicht ...
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  • 46.4k
28 votes

Saying that embodies "When you find one mistake, the second is not far"

Try ein Fehler kommt selten allein (Note the saying is actually with "Unglück", which could be used as well if you don't mind a more unspecific translation)
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  • 57.3k
27 votes

Is there a German equivalent for "self defeating"?

A similar established phrase is sich selbst im Weg stehen which means: oneself being an obstacle on the way to the target. It does not imply that you made the situation worse yourself, however. I'...
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  • 24.8k
25 votes

German equivalent to "going down the rabbit hole"

Für das von dir beschriebene Abschweifen/Abkommen vom eigentlichen Thema gibt es die Redewendung vom Hundertsten ins Tausendste kommen
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  • 15k
24 votes

What is the equivalent of "if you say so" in German?

Not much difference from the english phrasing. Wenn Du das (so) sagst (meinst)? Probably a slight difference with the tone telling so.
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23 votes
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Translation of "Und ob"

Your interpretation is not correct. The main problem is that "Und ob!" is a fixed idiom that means "You bet!" So the structure of the passage in question is: Will man das wirklich?...
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  • 7,433
21 votes
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What is the logic behind the sentence "Sieh es dir an"

There is a slight difference between etwas ansehen and sich etwas ansehen. The difference is that the reflexive version (sich etwas ansehen) is used to emphasize on the activeness of the looking. ...
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21 votes

What is the German idiom or expression for when someone is being hypocritical against their own teachings?

I also suggest the word Doppelmoral. You have two different sets of morals, one for yourself and one for everyone else. If one tells others to always lay out clear rationals in arguments and to stay ...
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  • 16.4k
21 votes
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German equivalent to "going down the rabbit hole"

Going down the rabbit hole in dem Sinn, wie es in der Frage vorgestellt wurde, nämlich als thematische Verzettelung, lässt sich im Deutschen ausdrücken als vom Hölzchen aufs Stöckchen kommen Diese ...
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21 votes

Saying that embodies "When you find one mistake, the second is not far"

Das ist wahrscheinlich nur die Spitze des Eisbergs: The visible part indicates the presence of a larger, not yet discovered part.
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20 votes
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What's the idiomatic equivalent of "at the top of one's lungs", if there is one?

You seem to be needing some anatomy details: How about Sie schrie aus vollem Hals Not quite the lungs, but close. And a common idiom in German.
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19 votes

What's the German expression for 'In a nutshell'

My first thought was Stephen Hawking's book The Universe In A Nutshell and how the title there was translated to German. In German, the book is called: Das Universum in der Nussschale, however, the ...
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  • 8,356
19 votes

What is the German idiom or expression for when someone is being hypocritical against their own teachings?

Here is one more German proverb: Wer im Glashaus sitzt, soll nicht mit Steinen werfen. Who lives in a glass house shouldn't throw stones. It means that nobody should criticise shortcomings or ...
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  • 8,684
19 votes

Construction I need help clarifying in Otfried Preußler's "Krabat"

It's not ihr es, but ihrs / ihres (theirs). I think, today you would rather say something like: Sie dachten sich ihren Teil dabei. They had their own thoughts on the matter. But as you see: der Teil ...
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  • 7,393
18 votes

German equivalent of “It works”

The most commonly used expression would be Es funktioniert! Sometimes it is phrased colloquially as Es geht! or Es hat geklappt! or Es läuft! The latter is mostly used when you managed ...
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