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34 votes

Why Ölberg and not Olivenberg?

Considering that another name for Olivenbaum is Ölbaum and the biological family is Ölbaumgewächse (Oleaceae), Ölberg with the meaning of “mountain of olive trees” makes sense to me. Ölberg has ...
Stephie's user avatar
  • 24.1k
31 votes

Why the frequent use of “Bad” in German place names (and does it mean something different than “bath”)?

The German "Bad" corresponds to the English "Spa". Towns containing a "Heilbad" may carry the protected title "Bad" and many of them do.
TimWolla's user avatar
  • 381
24 votes

Why the frequent use of “Bad” in German place names (and does it mean something different than “bath”)?

German towns can participate in a certification process to allow to carry a rating as Bad in their town name. By German federal law strict prerequisites have to be met by an applicant, e.g.: ...
Takkat's user avatar
  • 70.5k
21 votes

Is "Rotenstrand" a correct term?

You can say "Oderstrand" or "Rheinufer" because you would not say "Oder Fluss" or "Rhein Fluss". The Red River (at least the one in Asia) is translated as "Roter Fluss" so you would have to say "am ...
PiedPiper's user avatar
  • 4,448
20 votes
Accepted

Why Ölberg and not Olivenberg?

The German Ölberg is a free translation or mistranslation of the Greek name for the Mount of Olives ὄρος τῶν ἐλαιῶν (oros ton elaion). The Greek version is absolutely unambiguous when spoken, or ...
Adam Bittlingmayer's user avatar
19 votes

Why Ölberg and not Olivenberg?

I cannot prove the following, but would assume it makes sense. The Lutherian bible was translated into German 1545 - Most probably no one in the intended audience would have had an idea what an "...
tofro's user avatar
  • 65k
19 votes
Accepted

Why does “Schweiz” form the corresponding adjective like a city?

The origin of the name "Schweiz" is indeed the name of the town "Schwyz" and the canton with the same name. In the 14th century the Swiss people were actually called "Eidgenossen". After a battle (...
IQV's user avatar
  • 11.5k
17 votes

»The Hague« in English = »Den Haag« in German. Why not »Der Haag« or »Das Haag«?

We simply use the Dutch name of that city and don't translate it into German - And that happens to be Den Haag. The fact that this looks like "den", the accusative of "der" is pure coincidence (or ...
tofro's user avatar
  • 65k
16 votes
Accepted

Warum ist die Bezeichnung "Roter Weg" so häufig?

Roth, auch Rötel oder Rot kommt in erstaunlich vielen Flur- Gewässer- und Gemeindenamen überall im deutschen Sprachraum (nicht nur NRW und BW) vor. Rötel ist eine Bezeichnung für eine mineralische ...
tofro's user avatar
  • 65k
15 votes

Why Ölberg and not Olivenberg?

As you can see from your examples, Öl is a more archaic usage. The substance known as "oil" was originally only derived from olives (which was constrained to the Mediterranean area in those days). ...
frIT's user avatar
  • 401
14 votes
Accepted

What are the relative pronouns of cities?

All nouns have a gender – a couple allegedly even three, but no name is ungendered. You just have to find out which. In this case, cities (and most countries) are regularly neuter. That rule is ...
c.p.'s user avatar
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13 votes
Accepted

»The Hague« in English = »Den Haag« in German. Why not »Der Haag« or »Das Haag«?

Den Haag is the Dutch name of the city. The den in there is not considered a German accusative masculine definite article (or a German plural dative definite article) but an integral part of the city’...
Jan's user avatar
  • 38.7k
13 votes

Why the frequent use of “Bad” in German place names (and does it mean something different than “bath”)?

You asked only about Germany, and TimWolla's answer is also correct for Austria, but not for Switzerland. (These are the three biggest countries where German is an official language.) The reason, why ...
Hubert Schölnast's user avatar
12 votes
Accepted

What is the origin of the "-ingen" suffix in town names in Europe, particularly Germany?

The suffix "-ingen" describes the affilation to a leader or a person in general. So in Sigmaringen lived the relatives of Sigmar. This is not a swabian thing, as you can find many town names with ...
IQV's user avatar
  • 11.5k
12 votes

Definite articles - cities, lakes

Your first assumption would be correct, if there wasn't that last word of the sentence... The sentence reads: Neue Parkvorschriften im Ortskern and Simbacher is only a descriptive attribute to ...
Tode's user avatar
  • 9,598
12 votes

Pronunciation of "oe" in place names

The explanation is that Coesfeld is situated in a region influenced by Middle Dutch. The e is a lengthening vocal in this case ("Dehnungs-e"). This is similar to Dutch. In German, this ...
Jonathan Herrera's user avatar
11 votes

Gender of German rivers?

The bottom line is you'd need a full historical record of each hydronym you'd like to analyze. I cite http://m.spiegel.de/kultur/zwiebelfisch/a-364172.html Das Geschlecht von Flüssen lässt sich ...
Jonathan Komar's user avatar
11 votes
Accepted

Warum unterscheidet sich das englische Ethnonym für »preußisch« vom Deutschen?

Zunächst Preußen. Dieser Name leitet sich von einem baltischen Volksstamm ab, dessen Eigenbezeichnung *Prūsai (rekonstruiert aus dem Adjektiv prūsiskan) war. Dieser Stamm besiedelte das Gebiet, das in ...
Jan's user avatar
  • 38.7k
11 votes

Pronunciation of "oe" in place names

Names of places are often centuries old and have not been adapted to modern spellings. For a bit of fun, consider the place names Voerde, Itzehoe and Buchloe where the oe is pronounced as /øː/, /oː/ ...
Jan's user avatar
  • 38.7k
11 votes

Was bedeutet „Feuchtwangen“ auf Englisch?

The problem with names is that long age often obscures their origin: The original meaning is lost or reinterpreted; changes in pronunciation and spelling occur. The German Wikipedia entry for ...
David Vogt's user avatar
  • 26.5k
10 votes
Accepted

Warum haben Stadtnamen keine Artikel?

Die grundsätzliche Regel lautet: Eigennamen stehen in der Regel ohne Artikel An sich reicht das schon als Antwort, steht trotzdem einer da, ist es entweder eine akzeptierte Ausnahme, oder falsch. ...
tofro's user avatar
  • 65k
9 votes

»The Hague« in English = »Den Haag« in German. Why not »Der Haag« or »Das Haag«?

As others have pointed out: Den Haag is a Dutch name, adopted without change in German. In the source language "den" is a local or archaic variant of "de", the definite article for masc. and fem. sing....
fdb's user avatar
  • 3,378
9 votes

Why does “Schweiz” form the corresponding adjective like a city?

This rule actually refers to "geographical names" rather than just cities - the capitalisation of "Schweizer" thus just follows the rules :) D 90: Von geografischen Namen abgeleitete Wörter ...
Mac's user avatar
  • 7,198
9 votes

Is "Rotenstrand" a correct term?

It only works for rivers which don't need that river extension to be recognized. So, Oh London, du Zasterpfuhl am Themsestrand (Oh London, you boodle puddle on Thames' banks) works, but for the Red ...
Janka's user avatar
  • 62k
9 votes

Was bedeutet „Feuchtwangen“ auf Englisch?

The German Wikipedia entry to Feuchtwangen offers the etymology. Der Name geht auf das Bestimmungswort fiuchta (Fichte) und das Grundwort -wang (Wiesenhang, Aue) zurück. Es liegt *Fiuhtinwanga (mit ...
infinitezero's user avatar
  • 18.4k
8 votes

What is the origin of the "-ingen" suffix in town names in Europe, particularly Germany?

-ingen (or -ing,-ung, -engo and others) denotes affiliation to a person, place or geographic landmark. It is common in names of persons and places in many European regions where Germanic languages had ...
steffen's user avatar
  • 394
7 votes
Accepted

Wie wird “Cochem” ausgesprochen?

Wiktionary sagt: [ˈkɔχm̩] also ganz ohne e.
guidot's user avatar
  • 28.8k
7 votes
Accepted

Meaning of -berg suffix in German city names

According to german Wiktionary the word Berg has it origin in the proto-germanic word *bergaz which means Höhe (elevation). So in the beginning (9th century) an elevation in the terrain could be named ...
IQV's user avatar
  • 11.5k
7 votes

Meaning of -berg suffix in German city names

English hill translates into German Hügel but unlike in English speaking countries there are no cities, not even even villages but two named -hügel (Birkenhügel and Königshügel) and none … am … Hügel. ...
Janka's user avatar
  • 62k
7 votes
Accepted

Wann heißt es „in <Staatsname>“ und wann „im <Staatsname>“?

Das hängt davon ab, wie der Staat als ganzes benutzt wird. Manche Staaten haben einen Artikel und sind damit einhergehend meistens keine Neutra. Die überwiegende Mehrzahl der Staaten der Erde wird ...
Jan's user avatar
  • 38.7k

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