In Other Words: A Language Lover's Guide to the Most Intriguing Words around the Worldby Christopher J. Moore, Neil Packer
When ideas fail, words come in handy. But sometimes you can't find the right word, and what you want to say can't be found in the dictionary. English has its limitations, but the expression you're searching for may exist in another language. In Other Words is a unique collection of well-known and absolutely obscure "untranslatables"linguistic gems that/i>
When ideas fail, words come in handy. But sometimes you can't find the right word, and what you want to say can't be found in the dictionary. English has its limitations, but the expression you're searching for may exist in another language. In Other Words is a unique collection of well-known and absolutely obscure "untranslatables"linguistic gems that convey a feeling or notion with satisfying precision yet resist simple translation.
This quirky lexicon of hard-to-translate words gives the reader a new way to look at the world and how words relate to us. The words are arranged by region or country of origin, and a brief introduction to each sectioneach done by a respected translatorgives insight into the culture of the people as well as the language. Each of these singular words is cleverly and thoroughly defined, with interesting details and references throughout. The search for that elusive mot juste may be over.
- Walker & Company
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- 5.25(w) x 7.75(h) x 0.62(d)
Read an Excerpt
SCHADENFREUDE (GERMAN): A wonderfully uncharitable word meaning “to delight in another’s misfortune.”
RAZBLIUTO (RUSSIAN): The confusing bundle of emotions felt by Russian males for their ex-girlfriends.
DUENDE (Spanish):This wonderful word captures an entire world of passion, energy and artistic excellence, and describes a climactic show of spirit in a performance or work of art. It now has a depth and complexity of meaning that crossed artistic borders, from flamenco to bullfighting.
YOKO MESHI (Japanese):“A meal eaten sideways”:This is how the Japanese define the peculiar stress induced by speaking a foreign language.
TAARRADHIN (Arabic):Arabic has no word for “compromise”, in the sense of reaching an arrangement via struggle and disagreement.“Taarradhin” implies a happy solution for everyone, or “I win.You win.” It's a way of reconciling without anyone losing face.
DRACHENFUTTER (German): Meaning “dragon fodder”, this is the offering German husbands make to their wives when they've stayed out late or otherwise engaged in inappropriate behavior. A nice box of chocolates, or some flowers, perhaps, to mask the beer fumes.
Meet the Author
Christopher J. Moore holds degrees in modern languages and linguistics. He is the author of several books, including a major anthology of Gaelic oral poetry. He lives in France and Spain.
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