German English Words: A Popular Dictionary of German Words Used in English

Registered by nicolesinger of Newport, North Carolina USA on 10/17/2005
Buy from one of these Booksellers: | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon DE | Amazon FR | Amazon IT |
8 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by nicolesinger from Newport, North Carolina USA on Monday, October 17, 2005
This arrived this afternoon - how exciting! I look forward to looking through it. Thank you, dellfalconer!

Journal Entry 2 by nicolesinger from Newport, North Carolina USA on Monday, January 16, 2006
This is a slim book, 172 pages, but it's very full of interesting things. I was familiar with many of the words and knew they had come from German, but there were some I was surprised to discover. (Did you know that "nickel" comes from German? How about "hamster"? "Pez"?)

Some were a bit of a stretch for me as "English" words - technical terms such as "blende" (an ore especially of certain metallic sulfides) and "gneiss" (a certain kind of rock) aren't words I'd use outside of certain specialized contexts, and some words, like "Entemann's" (a brand of bakery products) I'd consider derived from names rather than adopted from German. But perhaps that's a bit picky - even those demonstrate how much of an effect the German language has had on ours.

The examples are many and come from a huge variety of sources - books, comic strips, movies, TV shows, ads... I think they may be the best part of the book. I just glanced through again and caught a Harry Potter reference! (Peeves the poltergeist)

The coverpaper is a bit stiff and flimsy and has a tendency to roll. And, to be really picky, the cover background looks like a facsimile of an original German text, but the white blocks which contain the title block and the cover text on the back so nearly cover it that for me the background adds visual distraction rather than interest. As I look at it now, I think an outline around the white blocks which would help to break them out from the light-colored page behind them might be all that is needed.

I think for me the best part of looking through this book is remembering the Germany I knew when my dad was stationed there in the 1970's. We took ferries across the Rhine, we toured castles, we meandered through cobblestone streets in the centers of towns. We drove on the Autobahn. We went to Oktoberfest. We shopped at Masa. (I think that's the name I remember. Big discount store.) One of my biggest regrets is that I haven't been able to give my kids the same view of another country that my parents gave me.

Sorry. Anyway. The book has been great fun, and I'll look forward to seeing others' opinions. I'm sending it out on an international bookring some time around the beginning of Feb. PM me to join.

So far I have:
Amberkatze - Austria.

Journal Entry 3 by nicolesinger from Newport, North Carolina USA on Tuesday, March 7, 2006
I am sending the book to Amberkatze as part of an Mbag of other books to be released. From Austria it should make its way to the UK and eventually home to the States.

Below is the tentative list:

Amberkatze- Austria
dododumpling- UK
Random Poet- UK
MissTerry- Germany
nice-cup-of-tea- Switzerland
mrsordonez- MO, US
maprem- WA, US

I'm sure I have everyone's mailing preferences somewhere, but if I remember correctly, everyone who is slated to mail internationally has expressed a willingness to do so. Please don't hesitate to contact me if you have a concern. Thanks for joining my bookring!

Journal Entry 4 by Amberkatze from Wien Bezirk 10 - Favoriten, Wien Austria on Wednesday, May 3, 2006
This arrived yesterday in a box of books! Big huge thanks nicolesinger!

The book looks really interesting and I will be looking through it long and hard and will most likely make notes. I will be going to the UK in 2 weeks time so I will pm the next person for their address and post to them while I am there.

Thank you again nicolesinger!

Journal Entry 5 by Amberkatze from Wien Bezirk 10 - Favoriten, Wien Austria on Sunday, May 14, 2006
This was a real eye opener for me! I have been living in Austria and using German everyday for about 7 years now and never really bothered to translate the German words I already used in Englsh.

I had to read a few of the entries out loud to my Austrian boyfriend because he didn't even know where some of the words came from. I really wanted to mention a few in this journal entry but can't remember all of the ones that struck me.

I liked how the book had examples of the word usage which was sometimes helpful and also interesting. I noticed the same authors appearing throughout the book and it would be intereting to find out why they use so many german words in their books.

I already have dododumpling's address so I can already pack up this book to post. However dododumpling did mention that she won't have internet for a couple of weeks so the journal maybe a little late appearing!

Thank you nicolesinger for letting me be a part of this ring and also another huge thank you for the books you sent me for the OBCZ (I am taking them there tomorrow!).

Journal Entry 6 by dododumpling from St. Neots, Cambridgeshire United Kingdom on Friday, May 26, 2006
This book was waiting for me (along with two others! Yay!) when I returned from my holidays. Looking forward to reading it.

Journal Entry 7 by dododumpling from St. Neots, Cambridgeshire United Kingdom on Tuesday, June 6, 2006
There is no denying the breadth and depth of research that went into this dictionary. References span the nineteenth to the twenty-first century, and come from a broad range of sources (films, music and cartoon strips as well as novels and journals). Despite having studied German at university I had never realised that words such as hamster, abseil and glitz (I typed all these terms with initial caps at first!!) originated from German. When you think about it, they do all sound German – as do words such as leitmotiv and poltergeist. I’d just never thought about it.

However, some of the entries just didn’t seem to me to belong in A Popular Dictionary of German Words Used in English. (Maybe that’s why it’s not called A Dictionary of Popular German Words Used in English). As well as the entries highlighted by nicolesinger (lots of technical terminology and brand names), some entries were simply to be names of German operas or plays (eg the entry for Der Freischütz. And I felt it unnecessary to translate personal names such as “Heimlich” in the “Heimlich manoeuvre” or “Creutzfeld” and “Jakob” in CJD.

I found the style of the Introduction to be rather clunky – too many “however”s and “in addition”s to help the dry statistical analysis to flow well. And I raised my eyebrows at “living in the German-speaking country of Austria” – shouldn’t the readership of a German dictionary know that Austria is a German-speaking country? (Shouldn’t everybody know that?)

These are nitpicky niggles, though, and reading back what I’ve just written I sound a lot more negative than I actually felt about this book. On the whole I found it informative and interesting. Thanks for the opportunity to learn lots of new things and to refresh myself on things I once knew but had become buried in dark corners of my mind!

Journal Entry 8 by dododumpling from St. Neots, Cambridgeshire United Kingdom on Wednesday, June 7, 2006
Sent off to Random-Poet by second class post yesterday afternoon.

Journal Entry 9 by Random-Poet from Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom on Friday, June 9, 2006
Just received in the post! Many thanks dododumpling for posting and nicolesinger for setting up the ring. I've had a wee look already and it looks fascinating!

Journal Entry 10 by Random-Poet from Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom on Sunday, June 18, 2006
This is a very interesting reference book (which for me means that it isn't an easy book to read speedily and pass on!). To an extent, I agree with previous readers about overly technical terms and proper nouns perhaps not really belonging here - but on the other hand that adds to the breadth of the book in showing how German language and culture have affected the English language. I really liked the examples of word use, eg quoting Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the X Files! The photos were good too (though some were a little small and unclear).

There was I felt one major omission - the Dead Kennedy's song California über Alles wasn't included as an example of the useage of über alles!

Overall I found this book fascinating but I couldn't help feeling a sense of the majority of the words being about food & drink, music or Nazism - what does that say about cultural relations between German and English speaking nations?

Many thanks to everyone for sharing this!

Released 16 yrs ago (6/23/2006 UTC) at By post in Edinburgh, By Mail/Post/Courier -- Controlled Releases



Off to MissTerry by the end of the week. Enjoy!

Journal Entry 12 by MissTerry from -- Somewhere in London 🤷‍♀️ , Greater London United Kingdom on Monday, June 26, 2006
Received today - thanks! Looking forward to this book as a recent arrival to Germany and the German language! Unfortunately its in a queue behind another book ring book, but I hope to get to it soon!

Journal Entry 13 by MissTerry from -- Somewhere in London 🤷‍♀️ , Greater London United Kingdom on Saturday, July 22, 2006
Just a quick note to say that I have started this.. Hope to have it moved on in the next week or so.

Journal Entry 14 by MissTerry from -- Somewhere in London 🤷‍♀️ , Greater London United Kingdom on Thursday, July 27, 2006
I had a very quick skim through this last weekend, just pausing at the entries of most interest to me. I found it to be a very interesting book, especially since I have just arrived in Germany. I'll be keeping an eye out for a copy of my own I think.

I agree with some of the comments above. I don't think words derived from people's names should have been included.

Posted today to nice-cup-of-tea

Journal Entry 15 by nice-cup-of-tea from Zürich, Zürich Switzerland on Tuesday, August 1, 2006
Just received at the weekend. Will read and pass on asap.

Journal Entry 16 by nice-cup-of-tea from Zürich, Zürich Switzerland on Sunday, August 20, 2006
enjoyed this, definitely a book to dip in and out of :-)

The entry I liked was about "Föhn" - the dry warm wind which comes downs off the alps - and which everyone in Zurich blames if they get a headache - I'd never made the connection between "föhn" and fönen - to blow dry one's hair :-)

I've pmed mrsordonez and will post the book as soon as I get an address.

Journal Entry 17 by mrsordonez from Fenton, Missouri USA on Friday, September 1, 2006
Arrived safely, will journal more upon finishing, (I'm already 1/2 way through!)

Journal Entry 18 by mrsordonez from Fenton, Missouri USA on Friday, September 22, 2006
This is ready to send out... I've got mixed feelings about this one.

Entries I liked:

Alpenglow, Angst, Blitz, Doppelganger, Fest, Flack, Foosball (great entry, I never made the connection, sadly), hopfgeist (although not common, interesting), kaffeeklatsch, kaputt, kvell, LSD (though it seems a stretch), meister, Pez, poltergeist (hadn't even made the connection on this one...), uber, U-boat, verboten, spiel, zeitgeist

Words that are technical/only good in certain academic contexts:

Bildungsroman, Bauhaus (should have been more info on this one), gestalt, Lebensraum, leitmotiv, Schadenfreude

Bad entries, derived from names, bleh:

Birkenstock, CJD, Entenmann's, Fahrenheit, Ohm, Steppenwolf (just the name of a book...)

Words I don't really consider "English" but rather loan/borrow words:

dirndl, lederhosen, Kaiser, Kommandant, Kristallnacht (special name for historic event, no other usage), muesli (really?), Nazi, Reich, ZDF (who else but people talking about German TV would find another usage for that one?)

There were two entries that the only reason they were in there was because they were titles of X-Files episodes (???) -- And I liked that show.

Mark Twain's "schottische" was interesting, even though I've never heard the word.

Only so many entries can be backed up with Edna Ferber, "Dawn O'Hara, The Girl Who Laughed"... which makes me think that this is a book by a German American author that was referenced when the author couldn't find an example anywhere else...

So overall, the book gets an "ok" review. I have to say that the funniest part was reading the back where there is a quote that says "I would buy the book!" from Nancy Frampton, dear soul. It is a bit ironic to be reading on a book that someone would buy the book... (quote was about the website). I guess overall, the website is most likely a good reference, but made into a book, it needs to be more selective, though I imagine the weaker content was left in as filler. Will be shipping this weekend.

Journal Entry 19 by maprem from Bothell, Washington USA on Wednesday, October 4, 2006
Es ist hier! Ve vill enjoy reading it.

Journal Entry 20 by nicolesinger from Newport, North Carolina USA on Thursday, February 28, 2008
Home again, home again! Thanks, all, for the wonderful trip!

Are you sure you want to delete this item? It cannot be undone.