Quiz about Some German Linguistic Oddities
Quiz about Some German Linguistic Oddities

Some German Linguistic Oddities Quiz


This is a miscellany of language questions - some quite demanding. In each case choose the most idomatic version. Have fun!

A multiple-choice quiz by bloomsby. Estimated time: 5 mins.
  1. Home
  2. »
  3. Quizzes
  4. »
  5. World Trivia
  6. »
  7. Languages
  8. »
  9. German

Author
bloomsby
Time
5 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
143,034
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Tough
Avg Score
6 / 10
Plays
1521
Last 3 plays: Guest 172 (7/10), Guest 72 (5/10), Guest 62 (7/10).
This quiz has 2 formats: you can play it as a or as shown below.
Scroll down to the bottom for the answer key.
1. You find a 'Pension' which looks as if the outside hasn't been altered since the 1960s. You are struck by the fact that it proudly claims to offer 'solide Preise'. What does this mean? Hint

Solid prices
Reasonable rates
No haggling!
Fixed prices

2. How does one normally say in German 'a house with a blue roof'? Hint

ein Haus mit blauem Dach
ein blaudächiges Haus
ein Haus mit einem Blaudach
ein Haus von einem blauen Dach

3. Which of these is the correct translation of 'He is sitting in the armchair, the dog at his feet'? Hint

Er sitzt im Sessel, der Hund zu seinen Füßen
Er sitzt auf dem Sessel, Hund zu Füßen
Er sitzt auf dem Sessel, mit Hund zu seinen Füßen
Er sitzt im Sessel, den Hund zu seinen Füßen

4. How does one say 'It's about to start'? Hint

Es beginnt demnächst
Gleich geht's los
Es ist im Begiff loszugehen
Im übernächsten Augenblick fängt's an

5. How does one say in German 'He boggled open mouthed'? Hint

Er hat mit offenem Mund geboggelt
Er tat den Mund weit auf und sah die Welt mit großen Augen an
Er war ganz entsetzt
Er hat Mund und Nase aufgesperrt

6. How does one say in German 'She got the shock of her life'? Hint

Sie hat ihr blaues Wunder erlebt
Ihr Entsetzen hat jeder Beschreibung gespottet
Sie hat einen ganz entsetzlichen Schock erlebt
Sie war äußerst schockiert, wie noch nie in ihrem Leben

7. Someone exclaims 'Pfui!' Which of these is the closest English counter-part? Hint

Fie!
Cool!
Super!
Ugh!

8. What is the correct way of saying 'They've walked past the house'? Hint

Sie sind das Haus vorbeigegangen
Sie sind das Haus passiert
Sie haben das Haus passiert
Sie sind am Haus vorbeigegangen

9. 'Es rumort im Garten'. What does this mean in English?
Hint

There's a rumor in the garden
There's a gnome in the garden
There are rumors about goings-on in the garden
There's a noise in the garden

10. A restaurant proudly advertises 'Gutbürgerliche Küche'. What on earth does this really mean? Hint

Wholesome middle-class cuisine
Traditional German cuisine
Generous portions for the bourgeoisie
Fat dumplings for fat wallets


(Optional) Create a Free FunTrivia ID to save the points you are about to earn:

arrow Select a User ID:
arrow Choose a Password:
arrow Your Email:




Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. You find a 'Pension' which looks as if the outside hasn't been altered since the 1960s. You are struck by the fact that it proudly claims to offer 'solide Preise'. What does this mean?

Answer: Reasonable rates

There's often a reluctance in German to use the word 'billig' - 'cheap', probably because it can have connotations of shoddiness, as in 'schlecht und billig' - 'cheap and nasty'. However, the use of 'solide' in the sense of 'cheap' is unusual. A much more commonly used word is 'preiswert', which means 'good value'.

However, '*preiswerte Preise' is unacceptable in German. (German is *much* less tolerant than English of avoidable rhymes and repetitions in linguistic usage).
2. How does one normally say in German 'a house with a blue roof'?

Answer: ein Haus mit blauem Dach

The *indefinite* article is generally omitted in phrases consisting of a preposition + adjective + noun: in the case of 'mit' and 'von', in particular, omission is standard. As for 'blaudächig', it's creative but unless your German is very advanced, it's best to treat linguistic creavity with caution, as it may be seen as an indication that you're having difficulty expressing yourself. That said, German is (probably) more tolerant of linguistic creativity than many other languages, but one needs experience in using the language to acquire an intuitive sense for which kinds of neologisms are accepted and which are not. 'Blaudächig' isn't a good candidate - it sounds about as strange as 'blue-roofed' in English.
3. Which of these is the correct translation of 'He is sitting in the armchair, the dog at his feet'?

Answer: Er sitzt im Sessel, den Hund zu seinen Füßen

This construction is traditionally called the 'accusative absolute'. It is used instead of 'mit' + dat., which is the common way of handling this. Many speakers of other languages are tempted to start the phrase with 'der Hund ...' However, the nominative isn't a 'neutral' case that can simply be used when no other case is obvious.
4. How does one say 'It's about to start'?

Answer: Gleich geht's los

When Queen Elizabeth II visited Germany in 1965 the then President of the Federal Republic, Heinrich Lübke, allegedly said to her, just as a firework display was about to start, 'Equals goes it loose'. However, it is more likely that this was invented by journalists.

'Demnächst' is generally used of books, films, etc. as, for example, 'Erscheint demnächst' followed by a list of titles. The nearest English equivalent is 'forthcoming'.
5. How does one say in German 'He boggled open mouthed'?

Answer: Er hat Mund und Nase aufgesperrt

'Mund und Nase aufsperren' - 'to boggle open mouthed, to be all a-goggle and a- boggle'. There is no such verb as '*bogglen' in German ... 'Mit großen Augen' means 'wide-eyed', and 'entsetzt' means 'horrified'.
6. How does one say in German 'She got the shock of her life'?

Answer: Sie hat ihr blaues Wunder erlebt

'Sein (ihr) blaues Wunder erleben' - 'to get the shock of one's life, to get a rude awakening'.
7. Someone exclaims 'Pfui!' Which of these is the closest English counter-part?

Answer: Ugh!

Alternatively, depending on age-group and formality, 'yuck'. 'Pfui' and 'fie' are etymologically related. Note also: 'der Pfuiruf' (pl. -e) - 'boo' (noun). However, it has been largely superseded by 'der Buhruf' (pl. -e), and the use of '(jemanden) ausbuhen' - 'to boo (someone)' is quite common.
8. What is the correct way of saying 'They've walked past the house'?

Answer: Sie sind am Haus vorbeigegangen

For 'to go, walk, drive past something' use 'an + dat. vorbeigehen (vorbeifarhen)'. There is also a transitive verb 'passieren' (reg.) which means 'to cross', as for example in 'Wir haben die Grenze passiert'. This should not be confused with passieren (intrans., reg. with 'sein') - 'to happen'.
9. 'Es rumort im Garten'. What does this mean in English?

Answer: There's a noise in the garden

This is an example of an impersonal verb. Compare with 'es regnet' -'it's raining', 'es klingelt' - 'the bell is ringing, someone is ringing the bell, there's someone at the door'. 'Rumoren' is rather unsual it can *only* be used as an impersonal verb. Note also: 'es rumort im Volk' - 'there's unrest among the people'.
10. A restaurant proudly advertises 'Gutbürgerliche Küche'. What on earth does this really mean?

Answer: Traditional German cuisine

The expression has nothing to do with the middle classes (though such restaurants tend to be in the middle price range). German cuisine varies considerably from region to region. Prominent traditional features in many parts of the country include game and venison.
Source: Author bloomsby

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor Beatka before going online.
Any errors found in FunTrivia content are routinely corrected through our feedback system.
Most Recent Scores
Jan 11 2023 : Guest 172: 7/10
Dec 12 2022 : Guest 72: 5/10
Dec 12 2022 : Guest 62: 7/10

Score Distribution

quiz
1/28/2023, Copyright 2023 FunTrivia, Inc. - Report an Error / Contact Us