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Drachenfutter

Discussion in 'Deutsch (German)' started by mirla, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. mirla Senior Member

    Saint-Petersburg, Russia
    Russia, Russian
    Hello!

    I would like to know if there is a word for Drachenfutter in English or any other language?
    Drachenfutter, as far as I understood, is small presents that a husband gives to his wife after he has done something not to her liking, like came home in the morning after the late-night party with his friends or broke his wife's favourite vase or smth of the sort...
     
  2. Hau Ruck

    Hau Ruck Senior Member

    United States - Midwest
    English - U.S.
    Well, technically, we use that same word in English. I'd say 95% of native English speakers would have no idea what it means, though. :)

    It is a native German term that has an actual, real definition in English dictionaries. :)

    To answer your question; there is not another single English word that says the same thing.

    We would have to use a series of words to describe such a gift. :)
     
  3. Dan2

    Dan2 Senior Member

    US
    US English
    Hi Filsmith,
    Who's "we"? :)
    Seriously, I'm curious: on what basis do you say this? I can't find the word in any of the dictionaries I checked, including a "Webster's Unabridged" and the online OED.

    Most of the online English references to the word describe it as a German word that's interesting because it's so hard to translate.
    If even 1% of English speakers (outside of German-speaking communities) know the word, I'd be very surprised.
    "peace offering" is often used for the concept in question, but right, that's not a single word.
     
  4. Demiurg

    Demiurg Senior Member

    Germany
    German

    I guess it's even unknown to most Germans. I found this info:

    It's related to the more common term "Hausdrachen" (shrewish wife).
     
  5. ablativ Senior Member

    German(y)
    I've found it at the first glance here. (link to dict.cc)
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
  6. Hau Ruck

    Hau Ruck Senior Member

    United States - Midwest
    English - U.S.
    I may have been a bit forward to say "we". :) My apologies. I often confuse my own experiences as well as my friends (many who have lived in Germany or are direct descendants of native German parents) and our communication with "the world." :)

    Upon searching, I see that it is not that common in all dictionaries, and that they do specify them as germanic. Again, I just spoke from my own, as well as most of my friends, experience in language. :) We speak of schadenfreude a lot as well, but I guess most would not have any idea.
     
  7. Dan2

    Dan2 Senior Member

    US
    US English
    I meant I couldn't find the word in any English dictionary (response to earlier poster's suggesting that the word is used in English).

    However, as for the word's existence in German... The word does not appear in the German print dictionaries that I have, nor is it in the online WRF, leo, or Duden dictionaries. It does appear as a German word in dict.cc (as ab noted) and Google Translate, but only with the literal "dragon fodder" translation.

    I wonder if it's an obscure German word (as Demi's post suggests) that was picked up in some list of "hard-to-translate" words, and has gained a new life as it is repeated in one such list after another.
     
  8. Hau Ruck

    Hau Ruck Senior Member

    United States - Midwest
    English - U.S.
    Well, most of my German friends have either very strong-willed wives or mothers. ;) Perhaps that's why I've heard it so much. They all tend to be from Bavaria (as far as dialect goes) if that helps at all.
     
  9. Resa Reader Senior Member

    Well, I am Bavarian - and this is the first time I came across that word. I guess that not many Germans will know the term nowadays (see also Demiurg).
     

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