German expressions in English
the free encyclopedia,
Become a member of TranslationDirectory.com at just
$8 per month (paid per year)
Use the search bar to look for terms in all glossaries, dictionaries, articles and other resources simultaneously
This is a list of German expressions used in English; some relatively common (e.g. hamburger), most comparatively rare. In many cases, the German borrowing in English has assumed a meaning substantially different from its German forebear.
English and German both descended from the West Germanic language, though their relationship has been obscured by the great influx of Norman French words to English as a consequence of the Norman Conquest in 1066, and the second Germanic sound shift. In recent years, however, many English words have been borrowed directly from German. Typically, English spellings of German loanwords suppress any umlauts (the superscript, double-dot diacritic in ä, ö, ü, ä, ö and ü) of the original word or replace the umlaut letters with Ae, Oe, Ue, ae, oe, ue, respectively (influenced by Latin: æ, œ.)
German words have been incorporated to English usage for many reasons: common cultural artefacts, especially foods, have spread to English-speaking nations and often are identified either by their original German names or by German-sounding English names; the history of academic excellence of the German-speaking nations in science, scholarship, and classical music has led to the academic adoption of much German for use in English context; discussion of German history and culture requires knowing German words. Lastly, some German words are used simply to a fictionalise an English narrative passage, implying that the subject expressed is in German, i.e. using Frau, Reich, and so on, although sometimes usage of German words holds no German implication, as in doppelgänger or angst.
As languages, English and German descend from the common ancestor language