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Words in Your Language that don't exist in English - UniLang

Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

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LLover33
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Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby LLover33 » 2013-11-05, 21:36

Hello fellow language enthusiasts,

Post words from your language, that simply has no equivalent in English. Preferably rather 'simple' everyday words. Basically when you want to express something with one word [in English] as you do in your own language, with no luck. (This can of course create frustation, as in my case.)

I will post words from Swedish, which I many times want to express in English, without luck.

Swedish:
Varsågod ('Here you go' and 'You're welcome'
Noggrann (To be thorough, Precise)
Duktig ('You're very good at this!")
Orka (Have energy to do something)
Hinna (Make it in time, or have the time to do something)
Jobbig (Obnoxious, annoying, troublesome, tough)
Ordentlig (Do something properly, thoroughly)
Lagom (Just right, the amount that is appropriate, middle, not too much and not too little)
Bädda (Make the bed)
Diska (Do the dishes)
Övermorgon (The day after tomorrow, Overmorrow mostly not used in English)
Somna (To fall asleep)
Blunda (Close ones eyes, I blundade)
Nytta (Benefit, Usefulness)
Sugen (Craving something, munchies)

Then in Swedish we have the exact words for describing each one of your grandparents, aunties and uncles.

Mormor, Farmor, Farmor, Morfar. Moster, Faster, Morbror, Farbror.

(I guess all words are possible to express in some way, but either you have to use another formula, or the word just doesn't hold the exact meaning you want to express.)
Last edited by LLover33 on 2013-11-07, 2:42, edited 4 times in total.
Native:  (sv)  (ar-tn) Fluent:  (en-us)  (ar-apc) Intermediate:  (id)  (he)

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Levike
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby Levike » 2013-11-05, 21:49

In Hungarian we have kárörvendés which means feeling pleasure for someone's misfortune.

German also has a word for this, it's Schadenfreude.
Hungarian (hu) Nem egy nap alatt épült Buda vára. _______German (de) Wo ein Wille ist, da ist auch ein Weg.
English (en) Hope for the best, prepare for the worst. __Spanish (es) No hay ceguera peor que no querer mirar.
Romanian (ro) Nu întinde arcul până nu este bine aşezată săgeata.

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linguoboy
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby linguoboy » 2013-11-05, 21:52

Levente wrote:In Hungarian we have kárörvendés which means feeling pleasure for someone's misfortune.

German also has a word for this, it's Schadenfreude.

What a coincidence! In English, it's also schadenfreude.

Now does your language have a word for "unhappiness at another's success"?
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

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IpseDixit
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby IpseDixit » 2013-11-05, 21:54

Only 3 words have come to my mind:

Figurarsi, it either means that you're not surprised by something or that you're very surprised by something. A bit confusing? Maybe :P but usually the context clears up all the doubts.

Magari, said when you hope that something previously said could be true but it isn't.

Mica, used to reinforce a negative sentence.

LLover33
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby LLover33 » 2013-11-05, 21:56

Levente, we have it in Swedish also as 'Skadeglädje'. But I don't like that word, because I don't want to believe in it. heh

Linguoboy, I guess there's some humour in your statement because obviously it's taken straight from German, like Smörgåsbord is taken from Swedish. I guess lately it's your language that has been standing for the greatest part of this phenomena wordwide. But the opposite can be fun and interesting to look at, just as we're doing.

Now your question, I think we have it in Arabic as Hhasad (which funnily enough sounds almost exactly like the Hebrew word Khesed meaning the opposite; Kindness.) I guess it's connected to Jealousy. And then there's the famous concept of 'The evil Eye'. Which in Arabic is simply called 'Ayn (Eye).
Last edited by LLover33 on 2013-11-05, 22:48, edited 4 times in total.
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linguoboy
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby linguoboy » 2013-11-05, 21:58

LLover33 wrote:Varsågod

I guess you mean specifically the usage where you're handing something over to someone else?

I wish English had a true equivalent to "Mahlzeit!" "Bon appétit!" just sounds so foofy.
Last edited by linguoboy on 2013-11-05, 22:00, edited 1 time in total.
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IpseDixit
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby IpseDixit » 2013-11-05, 22:00


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IpseDixit
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby IpseDixit » 2013-11-05, 22:07

Another one:

Macché, meaning you got it totally wrong / you're clueless.

LLover33
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby LLover33 » 2013-11-05, 22:19

Very interesting Ipse.

That's right lboy. It's interesting you say 'Bon appétit!" cuz reversed, here in Sweden many times I really (really really) wanna say the English 'Enjoy!'

I just read about Mahlzeit and it's interesting especially the usage without any connection to food. It sounds like the Swedish måltid, which is simply a meal. And I guess it corresponds to English Mealtime, but in Germany it's seems to be much more useful.
Last edited by LLover33 on 2013-11-05, 22:28, edited 2 times in total.
Native:  (sv)  (ar-tn) Fluent:  (en-us)  (ar-apc) Intermediate:  (id)  (he)

Relation To:  (no)  (da) *  (ar-eg)  (ar-iq)  (ar-lb)  (ar-ma)  (ar-sa)  (syc) *  (ms)  (sp) *  (es)  (pr-br)  (fr) *  (en-gb)  (en-au)

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Levike
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby Levike » 2013-11-05, 22:22

linguoboy wrote:What a coincidence! In English, it's also schadenfreude.

You've stolen that word.

Oh excuse me, you just borrowed it, so when are you going to give it back.:whistle:
Hungarian (hu) Nem egy nap alatt épült Buda vára. _______German (de) Wo ein Wille ist, da ist auch ein Weg.
English (en) Hope for the best, prepare for the worst. __Spanish (es) No hay ceguera peor que no querer mirar.
Romanian (ro) Nu întinde arcul până nu este bine aşezată săgeata.

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linguoboy
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby linguoboy » 2013-11-05, 22:33

Levente wrote:
linguoboy wrote:What a coincidence! In English, it's also schadenfreude.

You've stolen that word.

Oh excuse me, you just borrowed it, so when are you going to give it back.:whistle:

The great thing about "borrowing" vocabulary is that the loaning language gets to keep the original. It's kind of like photocopying someone else's text for your own personal use.

Now if it would could just get it together and borrow beziehungsweise while we're at it, I'd be so farklempt fun hertsn.
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

kevin
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby kevin » 2013-11-05, 22:46

Sometimes I really miss the German modal particles in English. They are so useful, and in written communication I often find it quite hard to find a good replacement (which probably just shows that my English is lacking, but anyway...)

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linguoboy
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby linguoboy » 2013-11-05, 22:48

kevin wrote:Sometimes I really miss the German modal particles in English. They are so useful, and in written communication I often find it quite hard to find a good replacement (which probably just shows that my English is lacking, but anyway...)

I miss them, too, and my English is native. In particularly I miss the question-softening function of denn. After you've gotten used to tossing it in, a bare query sounds so brusque.

Second to that is probably the imperative-softening effect of mal. "Why don't you give me a call sometime?" is so much more clunky than "Ruf mal an, gäll?"
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

Halfdan
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby Halfdan » 2013-11-06, 0:05

A Swedish word I like (with no single-word equivilant) is skämskudde.
Wiktionary wrote:a real or imagined pillow used to cope with the awkward feeling caused by witnessing something embarrassing; literally "embarrassment pillow".

I've always wanted a word in English to describe this, but to no avail.

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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby Lada » 2013-11-06, 7:08

LLover33 wrote:Swedish:
Duktig ('You're very good at this!")

There's the word with the same meaning in Russian молодец [mɐlɐdʲets] and I always had the trouble in translating it, taking into account that it's a popular word. Great that Swedish also has it, is it noun or adjective?

I was thinking about the verb загрузиться [zɐgruzʲitsɐ]. It's a colloquial verb meaning "to become full of feelings or thoughts, usually after seeing/watching/experiencing something".

Криворучка [krivɐrutɕkɐ]- a person who always breaks everything

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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby IpseDixit » 2013-11-06, 10:42

Two verbs that I miss in English are esigere / pretendere, they both mean the same thing which is "to want something because you think it's your sacrosanct right, and you will not accept a no as an answer, plus, when getting the wanted thing in question, you (the other person) shouldn't expect any gratitude in exchange because it was merely your duty". Probably the closest verb in English is "to expect" but IMO it doesn't convey exactly the same idea.

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Quetzalcoatl
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby Quetzalcoatl » 2013-11-06, 11:51

linguoboy wrote:Now does your language have a word for "unhappiness at another's success"?


In German, we call that "Missgunst" or as a verb "missgönnnen"... or let's just take the word "Neid" (jealousy) / "neidisch sein" (be jealous)

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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby linguoboy » 2013-11-06, 13:34

Quetzalcoatl wrote:
linguoboy wrote:Now does your language have a word for "unhappiness at another's success"?

In German, we call that "Missgunst" or as a verb "missgönnnen"... or let's just take the word "Neid" (jealousy) / "neidisch sein" (be jealous)

"Jealousy" is close, but it carries the implication that you feel entitled to whatever the other person has. Neid I would translate as "envy" in any case (for those who make a distinction).

Interesting that in English we have an equivalent of missgönnnen ("begrudge") but there's no corresponding noun.
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby benjamino59 » 2013-11-06, 16:36

We have hygge in Danish. The most precise description I've ever heard of it is being in a state, where all of your psychological needs are satisfied.
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Re: Words in Your Language that don't exist in English

Postby Halfdan » 2013-11-06, 16:53

benjamino59 wrote:We have hygge in Danish. The most precise description I've ever heard of it is being in a state, where all of your psychological needs are satisfied.


Is that similar to the German Gemütlichkeit and Dutch gezelligheid? In which case the translation may be tricky, but I usually go with coziness, snugness, comfortableness, etc. I actually think I've seen Gemütlichkeit used in English.


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