Your favorite German word

Maybe you already noticed: German is a beautiful language and has wonderful, strong words to describe things.
My favorite German word is “Hassliebe”, a kind of love-hate relationship with someone. Maybe you love your brother, but he is so messy that at times you could beat him. That’s a good example of “Hassliebe” :wink:

So, what is your favorite word in German?


my favorite word is definitely “verschlimmbessern:sweat_smile:
–> trying to help but often making things worse!

Did you know that Schadenfreude was adopted in English?
I found out about it a few years ago :bulb::nerd_face:


I still have a lot more German words to learn, but here are a couple I’ve heard along my journey that I found interesting.

Schlagfertig or Schlagfertigkeit - I think it directly translates to quick wittedness, but it is really about being ready for the Schlag! It was a cool word I learned trying to practice interview skills in German.

Fremdschämen - second hand embarassement. This one is kind of a cliche or unique word you always hear about in German, but I found it relevant when seeing tourists from my country here.

Innerer Schweinhund - I think this is your inner lazy self to describe it without using inappropriate words. I find it pretty funny a lot of the obscenities in German have to do with animals.


@kgeisl1 Great words, Kurt! I also love them. Although Fremdschämen sadly is a very common feeling when I see German tourists here ;-(


“Try to hold them off, angle the deflector shield, while I make the calculations for the jump to… Lichtgeschwindigkeit

It’s been a party trick to say it ever since I started learning German… now it’s evolved into word art. Either way, it’s an amazing word.

  1. Kummerspeck
  2. Schnapsidee
  3. Fingerspitzengefühl
  4. Torschlusspanik
  5. Honigkuchenpferd

Lets seeeee who knows what these are ? :wink:


@Lari1108 the only one I know is Schnapsidee - an idea you come up with when drinking. No idea about the others!


That is your intuition, right. That one is actually a Chatterbug word too I think

Torschlusspanik - does this have to do with angst from missing something? That is a guess from the three root words.


Schnapsidee= a stupid idea that will most certainly not turn out well.
Kummerspeck = fat on your body that you acquire from sadness/depresión
Honigkuchenpferd = a happy person ( “der grinst ja wie ein Honigkuchenpferd”)


Correct Kurt!
Are you still un Germany or did you move to Switzerland yet???

Eigentlich habe ich eine Arbeitstelle in der Nähe von Wiesbaden bekommen, die ganz bessere ist. Das Büro liegt irgendwo in nirgendwo, deswegen konnte ich zwischen Mainz und Wiesbaden entscheiden und ich bin zurzeit in Mainz! Frankfurt ist auch möglich aber ich habe keinen Führerschein und es gibt kein Offentlichverkersmittel, das zu diesem Dorf fährt. zum Glück habe ich gerade ein Fahrrad gekauft, mitdem ich pendeln kann.

Ich gratuliere dir eine Mutter zu werden! Dein Video war sehr cool und ich hoffe, dass alles bei deinem Baby und deinen Tiere gut geht!

Ich versuche jetzt mein Schreiben zu verbessern, wenn Jemand einen besseren Ausdruck hat, oder einen Fehler gemerkt, sag mir Bescheid.

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By the way: In a 2004 contest the following words have been chosen as the most beautiful ones:

  • Habseligkeiten
  • Geborgenheit

And in the list of the most beautiful “endangered” words were:

  • Kleinod
  • Dreikäsehoch
  • Labsal.

Okay, the last three are not used very often. But I love them anyway!


I absolutely LOVE this thread. I love how German often has an exact word for hard to pin down concepts. So intentional!

I’m still pretty novice in my German skills :see_no_evil: but I was elated to learn the word feierabend. I use it every chance I get. It’s my favorite German word and concept :wink:

Thanks guys. Now I have more favorites to add to the list. Keep them coming!


@SKrausser Those “endangered” words are wonderful! I had never heard of Dreikäsehoch before, does it mean that a kid is as tall as three cheeses? :joy:

I can’t even pick a favourite, there are so many. German is great at describing particular feelings with one word. I regularly feel Fernweh and Weltschmerz. On a more positive note there’s Zweisamkeit, which is a beautiful word for togetherness/partnership :heart: In autumn, I love how farbenfroh the scenery becomes :fallen_leaf:


lol @antomorr! Now, I want to know what Dreikäsehoch means, @SKrausser.

One of my favorite German words is Muskelkater. Nothing like having hungover muscles after a good workout!


@Megan I only ask questions, but never answer them :wink: says that it indeed refers to a little child (especially boy), who is “three cheeses high”. So @antomorr was absolutely right.


:joy::joy::joy: That is so great @SKrausser! I can’t wait to use that in a sentence.

I don’t think I have any favourite word, however, some words are of particular interest. I want to suggest some.

der Hüne - in English you would probably say giant. Although, a Hüne is a tall, strong and rather muscular male. Not necessarily a giant.
der Tausendsassa - Jack of all trades. A person with many talents who can basically do everything on his own. Tausendsassa is a rather positive expression.
Sein - to be / being. That word is probably familiar to most German learners as well as to English and French speakers. However, the philosophical dimension in German is fascinating and very deep. You have words like “Dasein”, “Seinsfrage”, “Seinsverfassung” and “Seinsvergessenheit”. The word “sein” can be found in hundreds of other German words.


I personally really like wanderlust, (even) though it became quite mainstream in the past years. :slight_smile:


Hallo Kurt,
lese gerade deinen Kommentar und da du um Verbesserung bittest…: …die viel besser ist. im Nirgendwo…es gibt kein öffentliches Verkehrsmittel, das…

Alles Liebe,