How the German language differed between East and West

One surefire way to tell whether somebody is an east or west German is to ask them what noise a duck makes. West Germans will typically say quak, quak, while east Germans will say nak nak nak. As far as the latter are concerned, it’s frogs that go quak, not ducks. The sound nak nak [...]

By |2020-10-15T12:36:58+00:00October 15th, 2020|German language, Germany|0 Comments

The Grimm Brothers’ Other Great Project Was Writing a Giant German Dictionary

In 1837, Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, the brothers most well known for their eponymous collection of fairy tales, were kicked out of their home. They had been working as professors at the famous University of Göttingen, Germany, when the King of Hanover, who ruled the area, demanded they and other academics swear an oath of [...]

The German Language of Fighting

When one thinks of swordsmanship, one typically thinks of the Japanese warrior, welding a katana, or perhaps a Celtic warrior swinging a broadsword. And empty-hand fighting is attributed to the British boxers or the French wrestlers. But in the Middle Ages, Germany surpassed itself as the European epicenter of knowledge in the martial arts. More [...]

By |2018-02-22T00:22:18+00:00November 21st, 2016|Fighting, German language, Germany, Language, Words|0 Comments

Project ‘Poets Translating Poets’ proves that poetry is more than art

"It was splendid for me," says Indian poet Rajendra Bhandari. "We usually lose so many things by translating poems. But this time, we gained much more. We got to know the language, the culture." Bhandari was among the participants of a project established in 2002 by a Berlin-based center for poetry called Literaturwerkstatt. The project [...]