Geeky Language Facts – Part#1

I know, you’ll love them all! 🙂

Here are some geeky language facts:


1. In Germany, Rice Crispies don’t go ‘snap, crackle and pop’ – they go ‘Knisper! Knasper! Knusper!’

2. In France, they go ‘Cric! Crac! Croc!’

3. In Spain, they go ‘Cris! Cras! Cros!’

4. There are 108 words for describing ‘sweet potato’ in Hawaiian, and 47 for ‘banana’, including ‘palaku’ – a thoroughly ripe banana.

5. The Finnish language has three of the world’s longest palindromic words :
‘saippuakivikauppias’ – a soapstone seller, ‘saippuakuppinippukauppias’ – a soapstone trader and ‘solutomaattimittaamotulos’ – the result from a measurement laboratory for tomatoes.

6. The Danish for jeans is ‘cowboybukser’.

7. The little dot above lower case ‘i’s and ‘j’s is called a tittle.

8. ‘Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo’ is a grammatically correct sentence – as ‘buffalo’ can mean the large animal, the city in New York and also a verb – ‘to bully’.

9. The concept of ‘Tingo’ (Pascuense language of Easter Island) means to borrow things from a friend’s house one by one until there is nothing left.

10. The Tashlhiyt dialect of Berber (North Africa) contains vowelless words like tzgr (she crossed) and tftktstt (you sprained it).

11. ‘Bel hevi’ (Tok Pisin, Papua New Guinea) describes the sinking feeling that accompanies sadness, literally translating as ‘belly heavy’.

12. ‘Mamihlapinatapei’ (Fuegian language from Chile) describes the shared look of longing between two lovers, where both know the score but neither is willing to make the first move.

13. ‘Drachenfutter’ (German) translates as ‘dragon fodder’ – meaning the peace offerings brought by guilty husbands to placate their wives.

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14. In Afrikaans bees don’t buzz, they go ‘zoem-zoem’.

15. In Malay cats don’t miaow, they go ‘ngiau’.

16. In Bengali cows don’t moo, they say ‘hamba’.

17. In Thai owls don’t hoot, they go ‘hook hook’.

18. In Albanian pigs don’t oink, they go ‘hunk hunk’.

19. In Vietnamese sheep don’t baa, they go ‘be-hehehe’.

20. Nine languages don’t have words for colour – they only differentiate between black and white. For example in Dan (New Guinea) things can be ‘mili’ (darkish) or ‘mola’ (lightish).

21. In Hindi, the word for ‘yesterday’ (‘kal’) is the same as for tomorrow. The tense of the attached verb tells you of the meaning.

22. In Amharic (Ethiopia), ‘aye’ means ‘no’.

23. In Yiddish, ‘finger’ means ‘toe’.

24. In Georgian, ‘mama’ means ‘father’.

25. In Indonesian ‘air’ means ‘water’.


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2 responses to this post.

  1. You were right…I did love them all! Great post.


  2. This is amazing, thank you. My score: I knew 6 out of 25…


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