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GERMAN LANGUAGE

Eight ways to talk about the heat like a true Austrian

With another heat wave just around the corner, here are some of the German phrases that will help you express yourself in the hot weather.

Eight ways to talk about the heat like a true Austrian
Sergey Zotin of Russia jumps from a 27 metre high ramp into the Wolfgang Lake near St. Gilgen in Austria 17 July 2005 during the annual summer cliff diving event.Photo by MARKUS LEODOLTER / AFP)

1. Mir ist heiß

Firstly, it’s worth pointing out how to correctly express the fact that you’re hot in German.

In German, you say mir ist heiß using the dative form of the personal pronoun ich.

Be careful not to directly translate the English sentence “I am hot” into ich bin heiß as most German speakers will understand this to mean that you are hot in a more sensual sense of the word.

Examples:

Mir ist heiß, so furchtbar heiß.
I am hot, so terribly hot.

Mir ist es hier zu heiß.
It’s too hot for me here.

2. Was für eine Affenhitze!

The word Affenhitze is a colloquial term used for very high temperatures and literally means “monkey heat”. It’s widely believed that the term first appeared at the end of the 18th century in Berlin.

READ ALSO: The German language you need for summer in Austria

At that time, the monkey house in the Berlin Zoological Garden was known for being extremely hot, so people started to speak about “heat like in the monkey house”. Over time, the phrase became shortened into the phrase widely used today.

Example:

Morgen herrscht wieder eine Affenhitze.
Tomorrow will be another scorcher.

3. Das Kaiserwetter

Literally meaning “emperor weather,” Das Kaiserwetter more colloquially refers to those days of glorious sunshine, blue skies, and comfortable temperatures.

In other words, it’s the weather perfect for an emperor.

It is believed that the term has its origins in Austria as Austrian Kaiser Franz Josef’s birthday, the August 18th, was often bright and cloudless.

4. Es ist brütend heiß!

The adjective brütend comes from the verb brüten, meaning to breed or to incubate. It is likely, therefore, that it made its way into common parlance about the weather, from the fact that raising younglings involves keeping them nice and warm.

Hier drin ist brütend heiß!
It’s sweltering hot in here!

READ ALSO: Five of the best things to do in Vienna this summer

5. Es ist sauheiß!

Similar to the Affenhitze, this one means “it is sow hot” or “pig hot”. Perfect for those unbearable heat days.

6. Ich schmore in diese Hitze

More commonly used in the cooking lexicon, the verb schmoren meaning ‘to stew’, or ‘to sizzle’ is often used to express the feeling of being exposed to high temperatures. A comparable English phrase would be, “I am sizzling in this heat”.

7. die Sonne knallt!

One popular expression to do with the heat focuses on the source of the problem itself. The verb knallen means “to bang” or “to slam”.

Example:

Die Sonne knallt auch wenn es bewölkt ist!
The sun is blazing even when it’s cloudy!

8. “Es is ur haaß”

If you want to keep it simple, but still extremely Austrian, you can’t go wrong with just saying “it is super hot” using a very typical Austrian expression.

The High German would be “es ist sehr heiß“, but in Austrian dialect it’s common to shorten some words (turning ist to is) and use ‘ur‘ in lieu of “sehr” (meaning very, much, super, or uber). The Haaß is a good way to imitate heiß in the local dialect.

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GERMAN LANGUAGE

7 ways to talk about money in German

With many of us having to tighten our belts at the moment, here are some uniquely ways to talk about the hot topic of money in German.

7 ways to talk about money in German

1. Geld wie Heu haben

If you’re lucky enough to be extremely wealthy, you may be able to say “Ich habe Geld wie Heu”, though it won’t make you very popular.

The English translation of this widely used phrase is “to have money like hay” –  in other words, to have so much money that it’s barely countable.

As most people don’t have huge hay reserves these days, the phrase likely dates back to the Middle Ages, when the gap between rich and poor, namely between the rural population and the nobility, was particularly stark.

Example:

Seine Eltern haben Geld wie Heu!

His parents have got money to burn!

2. Wer den Pfennig nicht ehrt, ist den Talers nicht wert

This thrifty phrase translates as “he who does not honour the penny is not worth the taler” – taler being an old silver coin. It’s similar in meaning to the phrase “look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves” in that it reminds us to appreciate even the small things, and that many small coins add up to a large sum.

(Photo by Philippe HUGUEN / AFP)

The origin of this phrase goes all the way back to the time of Martin Luther in the 15th century, who is said to have written the older version of the phrase Wer den Pfennig nicht achtet, der wird keines Guldens Herr (“He who does not respect the penny will not be the master of a Gulden”) above his kitchen stove in chalk.

3. Geld zum Fenster hinaus werfen

This expression is about wastefulness, and means “throwing money out of the window”.

The phrase is said to have originated in the Middle Ages in Regensburg, where the ruler would stand at the town hall window and throw money to his subjects.

But, since it was their tax money he was throwing, the citizens coined the phrase: “Throwing our money out the window” to describe wastefulness.

Examples:

Du hast schon immer das Geld zum Fenster hinausgeworfen.

You have always thrown the money out the window.

Statt das Geld zum Fenster hinauszuwerfen, sollte er besser mal sparen.

Instead of throwing money down the drain, he’d be better off saving it.

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: How to get free vouchers to learn German in Vienna

4. Geld auf die hohe Kante legen

This phrase goes back to a time when banks were seen as untrustworthy and people preferred to save their money in a hidden place in their homes.

(Photo by Andre Taissin on Unsplash)

The phrase meaning, “to place money on the high ledge” is still widely used today, as a way of saying “put a bit of money aside” and to save.

Example:

Die Deutschen legen immer einen Teil ihrer Einkommen auf die hohe Kante.

Austrians always put some of their income on the side.

5. Zeit ist Geld

Ok, so this one doesn’t originate from Austria or Germany, but it’s certainly widely-used in the German language.

The expression comes from Benjamin Franklin, the American scientist and politician who wrote it in his “Advice to Young Merchants” in 1748.

READ ALSO: TEST: Is your German good enough for Austrian citizenship?

It since found its way into the German language, which is hardly surprising. And the Germanic famous punctuality fits well with the idea that wasted time is costly.

Example:

In dieser Situation gilt: Zeit ist Geld.

In a situation like this, time is money.

6. das Geld aus der Tasche ziehen

This unpleasant phrase means “to pull something out of someone’s pocket” and is mostly used to refer to scamming, rather than theft.

It usually means to induce someone, in a cunning or fraudulent way, to spend money, or to take financial advantage of someone.

Examples:

Wolltest du mir das Geld aus der Tasche ziehen?

Were you trying to con me out of my money?

Trickbetrüger zeigen sich immer kreativer, wenn es darum geht, ihren Opfern Geld aus der Tasche zu ziehen.

Con artists are becoming increasingly creative when it comes to taking money out of their victims’ pockets.

7. Blank sein

Blank sein – meaning to “be broke”, is a situation most of us have probably found ourselves at one point or another.

The term blank originally meant “bright” or “shiny”, but later, the word came to mean “free of” or “stripped of”, eventually leading to this expression, meaning to be “free of money”.

Example:

Ich würde dir eins abkaufen, aber ich bin blank.

I would buy one from you, but I’m broke.

READ ALSO: 8 TV shows you should watch to learn about Austrian culture

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