The Awful German Language

Auch wenn die Anzahl an englischen Fremdwörtern (zu) hoch ist, habe ich es bin anhin geschafft auf Deutsch zu schreiben… Nun wird es für einmal englisch. Mark Twain sein Dank:

In the German it is true that by some oversight of the inventor of the language, a Woman is a female; but a Wife (Weib) is not — which is unfortunate. A Wife, here, has no sex; she is neuter; so, according to the grammar, a fish is he, his scales are she, but a fishwife is neither. To describe a wife as sexless may be called under-description; that is bad enough, but over-description is surely worse. A German speaks of an Englishman as the Engländer; to change the sex, he adds inn, and that stands for Englishwoman — Engländerinn. That seems descriptive enough, but still it is not exact enough for a German; so he precedes the word with that article which indicates that the creature to follow is feminine, and writes it down thus: „die Engländerinn,“ — which means „the she-Englishwoman.“ I consider that that person is over-described.

Den ganzen (wundervollen) Text, geschrieben 1880 als Anhang im Buch A Tramp Abroad finden Sie hier.

Ein Gedanke zu “The Awful German Language

  1. Na, da ist der Calvin und Hobbes vom 23. doch grad passend. Und da der Link wohl in einem Monat nicht mehr funktionieren wird, hier der Text:

    Calvin: Why aren’t you teaching us the genders of nouns?
    Teacher: Yes Calvin?
    Calvin: Is „desk“ masculine? Is „chair“ feminine? Foreign kids know, but we don’t! No wonder we can’t compete in a global market! I demand sex education!
    Calvin: … i wonder if her doctor knows she mixes all those medications.

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