Germany 101: Denglisch


Keep calm and Denglisch folks!

Ah yes that obligatory post about Denglisch has been long overdue. Denglisch – for those who don’t know – is a portmanteau of the words Deutsch (the German language) and Englisch (the spelling of English in German). Germans use various English language words in their daily lives; words which would mean something completely else in English. Good examples are the Denglisch words Handy (cell phone), Beamer (projector) and City (city center).

Germans aren’t the only ones who do this. Many people from non-native English speaking countries do the same. The Germans however have some “cool” expressions in their Denglisch as well. By cool I meant lame. Verbs like chillen (to chill out) and changen (to change) are often used. You might hear a German say Ich habe heute nur gechillt (I only chilled out today) when you ask them what they were up to. I don’t know about the people reading this but it sounds really lame to me. Like that guy we all know who’s trying too hard to be cool and comes off more ridiculous than cool. But Denglisch is a fact of life in this country and you’ll get into it if you live here to the detriment of your English.

Right now my handy is ringing and I’ll leave you with this song called Denglisch by Wise Guys.


One thought on “Germany 101: Denglisch

  1. Pingback: Germany 101: Your Guide to the German Supermarket Scene | A Pakistani in the Bundesrepublik

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