nightmare, daydream

Discussion in 'All Languages' started by Outsider, Jan 13, 2007.

  1. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Inspired by my own recent thread about the words "sleep" and "dream", I thought I'd ask what are the words for "nightmare" and "daydream" (either nouns or verbs) in everyone's language. Do they have a literal meaning?


    In Portuguese:

    Nightmare: pesadelo, from pesado, heavy (though pesadelo itself doesn't mean anything literally). There is no specific verb; we just say "to have a nightmare".

    To daydream: sonhar acordado, literally "to dream awake". There is no specific noun.
  2. Etcetera

    Etcetera Senior Member

    St Petersburg, Russia
    Russian, Russia (St Petersburg)
    Saludos Outsider.:)

    The Russian equivalents of these words would be the following:
    nightmare - кошмар.
    daydream - грёза (or plural - грёзы, it's used oftener) or сон наяву.
  3. Jana337

    Jana337 Senior Member

    nightmare - noční můra (surprisingly a literal translation),
    to daydream - "snít s otevřenýma očima" (to dream with open eyes)
  4. elpoderoso

    elpoderoso Senior Member

    The English term Nightmare refers to the Mare or Mara (various similar words in the Germanic languages) which is a kind of demon which sits on the victim at night.
    Outsider, I don't know, but maybe this sitting on the victim bears a relation to pesadelo and pesadilla.
  5. betulina Senior Member

    al bressol del basquetbol
    català - Catalunya
    Hi! In Catalan we've got:

    nightmare - malson (literally, "badsleep" - curiously, we don't say "malsomni", which would be more logic as it translates "baddream", bearing in mind that we have different words for "sleep" and "dream". I've looked it up at the dictionary and it says that "malson" refers both to a "bad dream" and to a "bad sleep", so it turns out that in this sense we do have the same word for these concepts! :eek: :) However, it is much more used as a "bad dream".)

    The verb here is just "tenir un malson" - to have a nightmare.

    to daydream - som(n)iar despert - the same as in Portuguese.
  6. gao_yixing Senior Member

    nightmare:噩梦 or 恶梦 (e meng)
    daydream:白日梦(bai ri meng)
  7. Frank06

    Frank06 Senior Member

    Nederlands / Dutch (Belgium)
    In Dutch:
    - de nachtmerrie: the nightmare
    The Dutch word obviously has the same etymology as the English one, but the word 'mare' got re-interpreted by folk etymology as 'merrie' (=female horse).
    (een nachtmerrie hebben - to have a nightmare)

    - de dagdroom: the day dream
    (dagdromen: to daydream)


  8. elpoderoso

    elpoderoso Senior Member

    Hello Frank, the same confusion also occurs in English with Mare being a female horse.
  9. ameana7

    ameana7 Senior Member

    Turkey, Turkish
    In Turkish

    Nightmare: Kabus, karabasan

    Daydream: Hayal
    To daydream: Hayal kurmak.

    Unfortunately both "kabus and hayal" were borrowed from Arabic, so they haven't a specific meaning for Turkish people.
    On the other hand "Karabasan", which is used for "nightmare", is originally Turkish and it means something like "making black or covering everywhere black".
    Actually it is my translation, it is open to discuss. :)
  10. Lemminkäinen

    Lemminkäinen Senior Member

    Oslo, Norway
    Norwegian (bokmål)

    nightmare: mareritt, 'mare ride/race'; apparently it's from the Norse mara, which is, as mentioned, a female demon sitting on people's chest.
    daydream: dagdrøm (bm), dagdraum (nn) - means the same as in English.
  11. robbie_SWE

    robbie_SWE Senior Member

    Trilingual: Swedish, Romanian & English

    nightmare = coşmar
    daydream = reverie


    nightmare = mardröm
    daydream = dagdröm

    :) robbie
  12. Maja

    Maja Senior Member

    Binghamton, NY
    Serbian, Serbia
    In Serbian:

    nightmare - noćna mora (ноћна мора); košmar (кошмар)
    daydream - sanjarenje (сањарење) - maštanje (маштање)

  13. Honour Senior Member

    Türkçe, Türkiye
    All the definitions are correct for sure in terms of dictionary definition.
    However, in daily life the term karabasan is used to describe the state of human body in which a person is conscious but cannot move.That's a transition state between sleep and awakeness which is not expected to occur under normal circumstances. Afaik, brain technically shuts down (paralyzes intentionally) motor neurons in order to avoid undesired actions during dreaming. In this state, our body is still paralyzed but our conscious is open.
  14. DearPrudence

    DearPrudence Dépêche Mod (AL mod)

    French (lower Normandy)
    In French (as you must know)

    a nightmare: un cauchemar
    my dictionary says: from Old French caucher, fouler (tread (I suppose)) & Dutch mare, ghost)
    No idea until today where it came from

    to daydream: dormir éveillé
  15. heidita Banned

    Madrid, Spain
    Germany (German, English, Spanish)
    In German we have:

    nightmare = Alptraum

    Alp = gespenstisches Wesen (ghost)

    Traum = dream

    Daydream = Tagesträumer, Wolkenschieber


    Tag = day

    Träumer = dreamer


    Wolke = cloud

    schieber = push
  16. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Ah, enfin le français ! Avez-vous noté que plusieurs langues l'ont emprunté leur mot pour « cauchemar » ? :)
  17. ronanpoirier

    ronanpoirier Senior Member

    Porto Alegre
    Brazil - Portuguese
    Nightmare = Lidércnyomás. It's made my the words "lidérc" meaning "mare" + "nyomás" meaning "impression". My friend just told me the most usual word for it is "rémálom".
    For "daydream" I have found "abrandozás" and "álmodozás". Both have a verb related to it (abrandozni & álmodozni) and both have the sense of "to fantasize"...
  18. Frank06

    Frank06 Senior Member

    Nederlands / Dutch (Belgium)

    1375, cauquemare; 1564, cauchemare; 1677 cauchemar.
    Apparantly it is a Picardian word. The first part comes from cauchier (presser), probably the result of a mix from OFr cauchier and OPic. cauquier, from Lat. calcare.
    The second part has been discussed already.

  19. valy822

    valy822 Senior Member

    Naples / Milan
    Italy- Italian

    nightmare = incubo
    daydream = sogno ad occhi aperti
  20. Thomas1

    Thomas1 Senior Member

    polszczyzna warszawska
    In Polish we use:
    nightmare –n. koszmar ;
    Daydream –n. marzenie

    As for the verbal form of nightmare we would use :
    śnić koszmary = to dream nightmares; this is the version we use most frequently (we use the plural)

    mieć koszmary = to have nightmares

    J’inclinerais à penser que nous avons emprounté le koszmar à français.
    Et voilà je viens d'y chercher et mon dictionnaire des emprunts corrobore que koszmar vient de français (couchemar). Je pense que le mot russe aussi vient de français.

  21. Ilmo

    Ilmo Member Emeritus

    nightmare = painajainen
    daydream = unelma
  22. robbie_SWE

    robbie_SWE Senior Member

    Trilingual: Swedish, Romanian & English
    Et aussi le mot roumain vient de la langue française!

    :) robbie
  23. elroy

    elroy Imperfect Mod

    Chicago, IL
    US English/Palestinian Arabic bilingual

    nightmare: كابوس (kaabuus) - simply a word for "nightmare." It may be related to other words with the same root, but it doesn't have another literal meaning that has given rise to "nightmare."

    daydream: حلم يقظة (Hulm yaqadha) - literally "dream of wakefulness"
  24. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Elroy, noticing the Italian word incubo, I wonder if the Arabic one has anything to do with Latin incubus.
  25. huelin Member

    Málaga, Spain
    German / Germany
    Don't you think it is more common to say "Tagträumer" in stead of "Tagesträumer"?

    By the way, I've never heard the expression "Wolkenschieber" - which of course doesn't mean that it doesn't exist... :)
  26. amikama

    amikama a mi modo


    nightmare = סיוט (siyut) or חלום בלהות (halom balahot, literally "dream of horrors").

    daydream = חלום בהקיץ (halom be-hakits, "dream while awake")
  27. parakseno

    parakseno Senior Member

    Romanian, Romania
    Of course, Robbie is right (well, at least the Romanian part, don't know much about the Swedish one, though). I just wanted to add that Romanian also has
    daydream - a visa cu ochii deschişi
    (similar to what Jana said for czech.)
  28. kewongjapan Member

    In Malay,
    nightmare : mimpi buruk (lit: dream bad)
    daydream : termenong (daydream)
  29. robbie_SWE

    robbie_SWE Senior Member

    Trilingual: Swedish, Romanian & English
    Yes, and similar to the Italian as Valy822 stated in her post!

    :) robbie
  30. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    In Portuguese, you can also say sonhar de olhos abertos (to dream with one's eyes open).
  31. samanthalee

    samanthalee Senior Member

    Mandarin, English - [Singapore]
    Daydream in Chinese literally translates to "White Sun dream."

    Nightmare has 2 versions. The more common one 恶梦 (e meng) means "horrible dream."
    The less common one 梦魇 (meng yan) means "nightmare dream". It's usually used to describe horrible experiences rather than to describe actual nighmares.
  32. yasemin Senior Member

    Turkey, Turkish
    In Turkish you can express a sentence composed of ten words in most European languages by just one word, however it is still a language having a little number of words. So, generally you have to use several words for a term, for example, in english.

    Also in this case, I think that we can try to think of something longer:

    nightmare : kötü düş (lit. bad dream)
    daydream: gündüz düşü (lit. daydream :D )

    Even if the others, kabus and hayal are more common as the words taken during the Ottoman Empire, like many others, these are used widespread as well. I specially like the second. ;)
  33. irene.acler Senior Member

    Trento - Italy
    I want to add the verbal form of "sogno ad occhi aperti", which is "sognare ad occhi aperti".
  34. 0stsee Banned


    nightmare: mimpi buruk (dream awful)

    daydream: bengong

  35. Marga H Senior Member

    You can also say:
    to daydream - śnić na jawie
  36. imbay

    imbay Member

    Thailand / Thai
    In thai
    Nightmare = ฝันร้าย ( făn ráai )
    Daydream = ฝันกลางวัน ( făn glaang wan )
  37. lazarus1907 Senior Member

    Lincoln, England
    Spanish, Spain
    In Spanish:

    Nightmare: Pesadilla- Verb: Tener pesadillas
    To daydream: soñar despierto / ensoñar* -Noun: Ensueño,
    But you knew these already for sure, right?

    * Not exactly the same, but close.
    The word íncubo is there, but it is obsolete.
  38. anarandi Member

    Buenos Aires, Argentina
    castellano Argentina
    Hello everyone:

    In Spanish, we say:

    "pesadilla" (noun) = nightmare
    "tener una pesadilla" (verb + object)

    "soñar despierto" (verb + complement) = to daydream, which literally means to dream while you are awake.

    Que sueñen con los angelitos = This is a phrase said to children when they go to bed. It means you wish they have happy dreams and dream of the angels.

  39. CatStar Senior Member

    English, Ireland
    hey there

    In Irish

    nightmare is tromluí which literally means heavy sleep
    to daydream is bheith ag aislingeacht
    and daydream as a noun is taibhreamh na súl oscailte which literally means dream with eyes open

    Slán libh!

  40. kimchi39 New Member

    Korean, South Korea
    In Korean,

    nightmare - 악몽
    daydream - 백일몽
  41. Tim~!

    Tim~! Senior Member

    Leicester, UK
    UK — English
    By amazing coincidence, the first message in my inbox today is a 'word of the day' thing from, which is an Esperanto thing. The word for today was sonĝo, which is a dream!

    Much as French has both songer and rêver to mean 'dream', so does Esperanto. Sonĝi is the apparition of pictures and scenes to a sleeping person. When a person is awake, the word is revi, so a daydream or aspiration is a revo.

    A nightmare is a koŝmaro (cf French cauchemar) or either inkubo (cf Latin incubus) or inkubsonĝo.

    Interesting thread.
  42. Tim~!

    Tim~! Senior Member

    Leicester, UK
    UK — English
    Oui, y compris l'Espéranto!
  43. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Vous vouliez écrire "rêve", n'est-ce pas ? :)
  44. Tim~!

    Tim~! Senior Member

    Leicester, UK
    UK — English
    Tout-à-fait! Ça m'apprendra réflechir avant de appuyer sur 'Submit Reply'. Merci du corrigé. :)
  45. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
  46. Flaminius

    Flaminius coclea mod

    capita Iaponiae
    日本語 / japāniski / יפנית
    In Bahasa Melayu (Malaysian),
    nightmare: mimpi buruk
    daydream: angan-angan
  47. kusurija

    kusurija Senior Member

    Lithuania, K. city
    Lithuania Czech
    nightmare - košmaras
    daydream - dienos sapnas, but we simply say (e.g.): einu ir sapnuoju - I dream while going. Or use Latin: somnolence..
  48. zenitude Senior Member

    Milan (Italy)
    Daydream se traduit par rêverie...
    J'ai vu qu'en Roumain, on emploie le même mot, mais sans l'accent circonflexe
  49. alex.raf Member

    Nightmare: (n) Kāboos کابوس - (v) Kāboos didan کابوس دیدن
    Daydream: (n) Rowyā-pardāzi رؤیا پردازی - (v) Rowyā-pardāzi kardan رؤیا پردازی کردن
  50. Nizo Senior Member

    In Esperanto:

    a nightmare = inkubsonĝo or koŝmaro
    a daydream = revo or, more precisely, maldorma revo

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