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More German Pseudo-Anglicisms

There are a number of English words that have been adopted by the German language but given different meanings or used in different contexts. These are called pseudo-anglicisms, and sometimes lead to German speakers re-importing what they mistakenly think are English words into their non-native English, often with unintentionally humorous or incomprehensible results. 



Wo man seinen Sound aufnehmen kann

Where you can record your sound

und den dann über den Kemper wieder abrufen kann,

and then can access it on the Kemper again,

ohne Boxen.

without speakers.

Captions 32-34, Rhein-Main-TV aktuell - Musikmesse in Frankfurt

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Die Box is short for die Lautsprecherbox, which means "speaker" or "loudspeaker." A native English speaker might be confused, however, if somebody told him his "boxes" are too loud.


Carmen Spindler leitet nicht nur ein Fitnessstudio.

Carmen Spindler doesn't just run a gym.

Caption 2, Bodybuilderinnen - Lieber zart als muskulös

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Another acceptable spelling of this word is das Fitness-Studio, which makes the English source more obvious. It's pretty clear what "fitness studio" means, but to English ears it sounds like an unnecessarily verbose word for "gym."


Ich hab' ihr schon dreimal auf die Mailbox gesprochen, aber nix [nichts].

I've already spoken to her three times [left three messages] on her voicemail, but nothing.

Caption 37, Großstadtrevier - Von Monstern und Mördern

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If somebody told you they were "talking to your mailbox," you'd think maybe it's time they seek professional psychological help. But in German, die Mailbox is just your voicemail or answering machine. 



Further Learning
Review an earlier Yabla newsletter about pseudo-anglicisms and look for more examples on Yabla German to see how these words are used in a real-world context.

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