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German Idioms and Sayings
"Like English, German is rich with idioms and sayings. However, 'Don't count your chickens before they hatch' doesn't mean much when translated - German has its own version. To find out this and more have a go at this difficult, but interesting quiz."
15 Points Per Correct Answer - No time limit
In English, someone who has all of life's comforts is said to 'live like a king'? In German, how is such a person said to live?
'like an actress in Hollywood'
'like God in France'
'like Caesar in Rome'
'like a fox in a rabbit hole'
In financial circles, which expression to German speakers commonly refer to as a lost cause?
a calf without it's mother
an overcast day
a keg without a bottom
a nine-man team
It's definitely true that silence is golden. In German this goes one step further. How?
Silence is golden, singing is platinum
Whispering is silver, silence is golden
Silence is golden, talking is dirt
Talking is silver, silence is golden.
In English if something is very difficult to understand, someone might say 'That's all Greek to me'. Translated, what is the German equivalent of this saying?
'I can't read Egyptian'
'I only understand railway station'
'Where does east meet west?'
'Where does the day begin and the night end?'
To go off on the wrong track is to bark up the wrong tree. What is a common equivalent in German?
to drink the wrong beer
to bet on the wrong horse
to look for peas in a fruit shop
to shoot the wrong target
According to old German weather proverbs, which month 'does what it wants'?
What do German speakers refer to colloquially as 'the upper class'?
'the upper ten thousand'
'the cream of the cake'
'the kings of the realm'
'the powerful ones'
Don't cut off your nose to spite your face ... But what shouldn't you do in German?
knock out your tooth to spite your mouth
kill you the cow you get your milk from
saw off the branch you are sitting on
shoot your foe to damage his shirt
It`s well known that the early bird catches the worm. But what happens in German?
The morning hour has gold in its mouth
The owl cowers in the morning hour
The sunrise has silver teeth
The first light is made of gold
As mentioned above, 'don't count your chickens before they hatch' wouldn't mean much directly translated. What is the German version of this idiom?
'don't drink your wine before you've harvested the grapes'
'one shouldn't praise the day before the night'
'a horse with a bridle is still a horse'
'one shouldn't look at a herring from behind'
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Compiled Jun 28 12