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  5. "Ich drücke dir die Daumen!"

"Ich drücke dir die Daumen!"

Translation:I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you!

December 22, 2013

157 Comments
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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IsisTheNicest

I thought it was I press you under my thumbs, which I interpreted as controlling someone and very different from wishing someone luck. Oops.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rossfrank

Me too, I put you're under my thumb. This is an idiom I feel is closer than the answer. But I suppose you cant argue, what a challenging module.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pogosticksteve

I see why you would think that, but this is an expression of hope or wishing someone luck. type the phrase into google images and check out the pictures. Germans sometimes wrap their fingers around their thumbs in the same sense that Americans (and maybe Brits?) cross their fingers to express the hope for good luck.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/avantpelt

That gives me great context for the phrasing of this idiom. Danke!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ChristinaK18

We have a similar expression (and gesture) in Swedish, litterally translating as "I'm holding ny thumbs (for you)". Perhaps it's a germanic thing?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/matanov

I don't know about germanic, because in Czech we also hold thumbs for somebody ("držet někomu palce"). However, we could have borrowed it from German. Maybe it's (Indo-)European (or continental).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TataJuliana

We do it the same way in Poland. “Trzymamy kciuki“


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ENBellin

I thought that entire region - the Czechs, Austrians, Pols, Swedes, etc. - were all considered Germanic. Are Czechs considered more of Baltic discent? or something else? I find myself curious.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BampaOwl

Elise32122, I don't think it's as simple as that. I thought Czechs and Poles were Slavs. But I would rather hear from someone who knows what they are talking about.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/signesandur

In Danish we actually cross our fingers, like in English. Funny that it is not the same as Swedish:)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/siljetr

I was about to say the same! In Norway we cross our fingers, I have never heard about this, and Sweden is so close...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AylaMarkkula

Crossing fingers means you're lying in Sweden!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chris_ds

Same thing in Brazil !


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Marengoe

As a child I always thought it funny that you would cross fingers for luck. In Germany you cross your fingers behind your back if you are lying about something. It helps - so you will never get caught lying ;-)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/0YlFH84R

We also have it in Romania (Îți țin pumnii) which translates as "I'm holding my fists for you" although romanian has a latin descent.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marianadra775645

Correct _ I also live in Romania


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HoroTanuki

Hur säger man det där?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sammapowelly

Yes in Britain we cross our fingers and for extra luck we'll cross our fingers on both hands and then our arms across our chest as well!

(Not to be confused with tv shows/films when a person is crossing their fingers behind their back it shows they are being deceitful and don't mean a word they are saying..)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dunk999

Ha! We Americans don't do the crossing our arms bit. We will say "I'll keep my fingers and toes crossed" though.

Fingers crossed behind the back means the same here.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/emrly

I'm English. I have never heard of crossing arms for luck!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BampaOwl

In English, it is commonly abbreviated to just "Fingers crossed". And crossing arms is a bit excessive!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eric487465

I'm curious, in America I've never heard anyone finish the phrase with the "for you" bit, do other languages shorten the phrase as well?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/voidIndigo

In Brazil, we have the expression "fazer figa", which means to make a fist with the thumb inside and the tip of the thumb appearin between the fingers.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LukaPirnat

We have that in Slovenia as well, 'kazati nekomu fige'. It should look like a fig and you do it when you mock someone.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aiste228043

In Lithuania we also have special expression for this "špyga". We say "I'm holding špygas for you" - I'm wishing you luck. But it can have negative connotations - showing špyga to someone is a very rude gesture.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Biscuitcase

This is a fascinating thread - thank you to all for the different insights.

I'm British and I've always found the act of crossing fingers for luck a bit strange and wondered why we do it. This German act of closing the fingers around the thumb makes more intuitive sense to me - I'm imagining what we sometimes call a 'white knuckle ride' in English - when you find yourself squeezing hold of something tightly in excitement or suspense or hope or fear. So the actual squeezing of your own thumbs and making a fist in the suspense of things going well for someone just seems more logical to me than crossing fingers which is an awkward gesture without any apparent reason behind it.

From now on I'm squeezing my thumbs in support of greater idiomatic logic! ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

I was wondering if it were an actual gesture or movement or just a metaphor or some kind. Thanks


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Homme-dGinger

Bra that was excellent advice and makes si much more sense


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zivobice

In Serbia we hold thumbs for somebody too!(Držim ti palčeve!)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/werekitty

I thought it was going to be "I bite my thumb at you" a la Shakespeare


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sjoerdd12

In Dutch we do say 'Iemand (someone) onder (under) de (the) duim (thumb) houden (to hold/to keep)'.

Which exactly means 'Controlling someone' so your guess was pretty good! ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hedi76
  • 1377

„Jemanden unter dem Daumen haben“ is another proverb in German and means that you have the control about somebody. It is the exact translation of the Dutch "iemand onder de duim hebben” or the English "to have a person under one's thumb”

“Ich drücke dir die Daumen” has the meaning of wishing somebody good luck. You say this to a person who is worried because he has to undergo a difficult test, an important interview, an admission exam, etc. You assure him with this proverb that you will be mentally with him and with a little bit of good luck everything will be fine.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aryamaan008

To clip someone's wings also means to keep under control


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hedi76
  • 1377

The equivalent in German for clipping someone's wings is "jemandem die Flügel stutzen".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/indyute

I thought the same thing, as in "to twist someone's arm" to get them to to something.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Evolita

In US English it is wishing them luck... some other places may mean something else.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/antjabohn

In Germany, I think???? that it's a popular show of good luck to 'press your thumb into your fist'. In the same way that one would cross their fingers??? Lol that's what my German teacher said.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/matanov

For those who are interested in how does the gesture look like: German wikipedia http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daumen_dr%C3%BCcken or just look in Google Images for "Daumen drücken".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BartoszCel1

In Poland we do the same. We say "Trzymam kciuki za ciebie" which literaly means "I'm holding thumbs for you"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/shilohsmom123

Thank you for the pic Christian. It's good


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/skywisej

Would someone ever say just "Daumen drücken!" as a simplified phrase? I'm just wondering because I would more likely say "fingers crossed!" than "I'll keep my fingers crossed for you!"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Zchbaniel25

"Daumen drücken" sounds too much like an order (like "Stillgestanden!")

When the normal spoken version "Ich drück dir den Daumen" (one e less -you'd say rather drück than drücke) is still too long for the actual occasion, you can pronounce it like:

'Ch'drückdirn Daumn! (This is phonetic! Do not use this in written German!) - which is nice and short - practically only 3 syllables.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ThatKevRyan

Now this is where the difference is between learning it and living it. I find the German folk I work with find my Irish accented English to be hard to follow because of the sheer amount of syllables, consonants and vowels we can leave out. It's a great insight into one's own language to get an external perspective on how we mess it up day to day!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/skywisej

Wow thank you for the info! Very interesting :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cheungtszhim

Is that even pronounceable? 0.0


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Angie813925

Lol. This is when I'd say "Deutsche Sprache, schwere Sprache!"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/niscate

Actually, "Daumen drücken" is being used, but its meaning is rather "(Please) wish me/him/her/them luck".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/shilohsmom123

Yes, skywisej they do say that


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/shilohsmom123

But I find that more often they just show you their pressed thumbs.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jetsetterd

What is the actual literation translation of this? i press you the thumb?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Syne

I googled it wondering if pressing thumbs was a gesture of good luck in Germany, and it seems that this idiom is often accompanied by the gesture of closing your hands around your thumbs. It makes sense in a way - like you're wishing so hard that someone will succeed that you're clasping your fists.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/godonlyknows

I'll press my thumbs for you. ("dir" is dative so it can't be the direct object like it is in your sentence.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lev.levitsky

The direct object is "the thumbs", so "tecnically" I think Jetsetterd's translation is correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/destabilized

Except it isn't proper English, so the most direct translation would be "I press the thumbs for you." alike to how the non-idiomatic sentence "Ich halte dir die Tür offen." translates to "I hold the door open for you.". That being said, in the German idiom it is implied, that you press your own thumbs and neither the other parties' or indefnite thumbs, so "I press my thumbs for you." probably conveys the direct meaning (is that a thing?) best.

As a side note, I am a native German and even tho I've used the idiom millions of times, I have no clue how to properly press my thumbs and can't remember ever seeing anybody actually doing it, so I kind of doubt the action is really a thing. It is much more common to hold up a thumb.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/smudgeon

My wife (native Berliner) does this often. She makes a fist and tucks her thumb into her palm. She insists it's a thing :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wkjii

I wanted to see if Duolingo would accept a literal translation. I entered "I am pressing you the thumbs". Duolingo marked it wrong and said it should be "I am pressing your thumbs".

I don't see how "dir" is possessive of "die Daumen".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alehaak

Why is it 'I press you the thumbs' wrong? It actually sounds better than I press your thumbs as Duo suggests as the right translation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

I press you the thumbs is absolutely not a good English syntax. And dir actually means that the you should be to you or for you or some preposition. But that structure is common in German but not used by any native English speaker. I think that most English speakers would have no idea what was being expressed. Of course, like crossing fingers, it is a culturely specific idiom.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alehaak

Well, that explains the fact that I am not a native English speaker ! :P hahaha


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sazziejjj

In the Netherlands we sometimes, in stead of crossing our fingers, press your thumb with the opposite index finger and switch to the thumb on the other hand with the opposite index finger to create a circular motion. It's hard to explain, but I think the Germans might do this as well and that they might be reffering to this with Daumen drucken.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/doctor.adam

Ok just anyone explain the meaning ,, i do not understand ,,


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RobinCard

Keeping your fingers crossed is an English expression meaning to wish or hope that something will happen. It's kind of a wish for luck.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/doctor.adam

Like i am praying for you


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RobinCard

Yes but less serious and more informal. You could say "Fingers crossed, I will get the job" but you wouldn't say "Fingers crossed, I won't get AIDS".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/doctor.adam

Why not , god i won't get AIDS HHHH THANKS.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ZoeCannon

I guessed, "I'm twisting your arm." Not even close! :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Corydw760

Ok so my wife is German and she thinks that the translation of "press my thumbs" for you is silly. It is clearly a squeeze. Someone posted a picture of hands on this thread where the guy is squeezing his thumbs. I believe the correct translation should be, "I will squeeze my thumbs for you."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/andre0301

In Brazil and in Portuguese, we cross our fingers instead of the thumbs, the indicator and the middle ones.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Necronomis

I just want to clarify... My answer was "i press the thumbs for you." From reading online, and other comments, that translation is the most accurate one literally, but is wrong because the "my" is assumed? Do i understand correctly?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HealthyProphet

I had this same question....somebody please weigh in? I used 'the thumbs' and it was counted as incorrect. :(


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/9toads

After mousing over each word, I understood "I'm pressing my thumbs" which sounds close enough to the Swedish expression "I'm holding my thumbs" which means what we Americans would say as "I'm crossing my fingers" for good luck. So I got that far, but I left out the "for you" bit and lost a heart :(


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Radmilce

It's the same in Macedonian: "Stiskam palci (za tebe)" which means "I hold my thumbs (for you)"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/villyh

Same in Bulgaria. Стискам (ти) палци. But I would translate it as "I'm clenching my thumbs (for you)" (it had the closest meaning in the translator, although i haven't seen this word till now.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KirZhukov

in russian it is more like " ill keep my fists for you" though it may sound intimidating in english


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jdendura

'Do you bite your thumb sir?' "I do bite my thumb sir..." 'But do you bite your thumb at me sir?'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mountain10

I would think that "I am rooting for you" is also correct


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CasperBent

Being Dutch without knowing many English proverbs it's hard enough to do these exercises. I wish they would at least show me the correct answer once so I don't have to translate it literally.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SheriefElg

And this is normal for people like you and me, as both of us don't have enough knowledge of idioms in English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Duo-Caro

Booooo. They didn't pass me for "I will keep my fingers crossed". The "for you" at the end is redundant imho.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlonBrand

It is coomon to sayin Israel that crossing fingers is a christian thing (therefor religious jews avoid doing so). Anyone knows the truth?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TuscanHBF

In afrikaans we also say I am holding my thumb for you. Ek hou duim vas vir jou. Interresting to see how many other languages share this saying.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gerard448759

Literally: I (nom) press for? you (dat) the thumbs (akk)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hedi76
  • 1377

If pressing or squeezing the thumbs does not hurt enough you can use another one, for good luck as well: “Hals- und Beinbruch!” what means “break neck and leg”.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LENOREwood

What is the literal translation?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hedi76
  • 1377

I queeze my thumbs for you.
With this idiom you wish somebody good luck. The posted picture shows you how it looks like.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Schmaisrael

We have the same sentence in Hebrew אני מחזיקה לך אצבעות


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kalina796558

Fingers crossed was accepted


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JG_JG_02

The defined term that came from Daumen was thumb not "thumbs" therefore I was counted wrong! But would that still make sense? " I am pressing on your thumb"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pogosticksteve

The literal translation is "I am pressing the (my) thumbs for you". "I am pressing on your thumbs" would be "Ich drücke deine Daumen".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gorn61

(der) Daumen is masculine, so die Daumen would have to be plural.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/shifudoc

"break a leg" is (Hals- und Beinbruch!), not (Ich drücke dir die Daumen!) >:(


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/shilohsmom123

Also a good luck wish, but only in theater.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/esgerman12

But Hals- und Beinbruch in German is not restricted to theater.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sagher

It accepted "I cross my fingers for you"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Russell28

bab.la is an excellent resource for idioms.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Yaxmine

Confused with the dir and dich. What is the different


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RymeLegis

It depends on the case. Dich is accusative, dir is dative. If you're unfamiliar with German cases (nominative, accusative, dative and genitive) they are explained in the notes of some of the skills here on Duolingo, or if you haven't reached that skill yet, there are good explanations on About.com: http://german.about.com/library/blcase_sum.htm and elsewhere.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael_Meredith

Merely "im crossing my fingers." is more accurate a translation but considered wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CasperBent

for that kind kf thing it's best to mark the question and give your answer for the developers to add


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VikasBobal

Very interesting... Thnx evry 1


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DanielItza1

On Spanish we will say: Hare "chonguitos" por ti.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/joadventuregirl

Shouldn't "I'll keep my fingers crossed" be accepted?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/chetalanel

No. It doesn't specify on whose behalf they will be crossed. This sentence has a specific recipient of the crossed fingers


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PriiKaulitz

They changed the translation! That's good


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wecmiw

In french , it's also: i cross my finger, "je croise les doigts".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/chelseakristine

I don't even understand what this is supposed to mean


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Titchymitch

As others above have said, "Pressing your thumbs together" is the German equivalent of crossing your fingers in English. It's an informal way of wishing someone luck.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KaraMenssen

One time it told me that it was "i am pressing your thumb" and the next time it said " I'll keep my fingers crossed for you" I'm confused...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Apahegy

Can this sentence be modified at all? What if you want to wish yourself luck? Suppose you have a big job interview coming up; can you tell someone "Ich drücke mir dei Daumen?"

Suppose some boy applies for college; can the boy's father tell his wife, "Ich drücke ihm die Daumen?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SheriefElg

It's a matter of local culture, which includes body language and gestures. The sentence runs about a hand sign, even if it could have different meanings within Europe. It's hard for a middle eastern man like me to get it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SheriefElg

Does it mean: touch wood!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bliss_Poppet

I answered : I'll keep my fingers crossed for you. Duo says 'another translation': I'll keep my fingers crossed for you!! Silly!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gtmgianni

Yeah, it's probably because it doesn't like the type of apostrophe you're using. It does the same thing to me, and the only thing I see that is different to what I'm typing is the shape of the apostrophe!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/stephensoldner

This is true. For some reason, this appears to be the only exercise on Duo that cares about proper apostrophe usage. I almost never use apostrophes on Duo (helps me type faster) and Duo always accepts the answer. This one, however, has never accepted 'ill', only 'I'll'.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lynettemcw

That's because ill is a word on its own. Its typo checking doesn't work if the "typo" is a different word.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/stephensoldner

Noted, but it works on other answers, is my point. 'ill' is accepted for 'I'll' in other places. Just like 'well', 'hell', and 'shell' for 'we'll', 'he'll', and 'she'll', respectively.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/stephensoldner

Yes, but my point is that Duo accepts "ill" without the apostrophe for every other exercise. This is the only one that requires "I'll".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gtmgianni

I still use apostrophes, it's just that the type font that the apostrophe is in makes it look "curled" rather than a straight line as it normally is. Duo just doesn't seem to like the different fonts?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Deepak.Sahu

I have my fingers crossed -i thought duo would accept it


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bersalon

Could I also say, "Good luck!"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kaibreeze

Ha! I typed " Good Luck" and it was accepted.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JimScott7

'I crossed my fingers for you' was marked as wrong. Surely it is a reasonable translation which can never be literal as drücken means to press.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RuthmZabala

At first I thought it said Damen


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Evolita

"Drukkolok neked" in Hungarian. Doesn't it sound easy?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WarrenEsch

Isn't the word 'my' usually implied in the English saying?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Evolita

In Hungarian we say "Drukkolok neked" which means "I'm pressing for you" (druecke fur dich) not specifying what body part we press... sounds like it was adopted from German.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EmmaK05

It really means "I'll squeeze of you the thumb"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tony713682

why not I shall instead of I will or I'll???


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bubsy1

In Bulgaria we also "cross thumbs for you" ({ Stiskam ti palci}, Стискам ти палци)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoanFerrer5

Touch wood! is not right?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hedi76
  • 1377

No, it is not the same.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KaydinF

In South Africa we say both, but that's probably because we also speak Afrikaans, which has a lot of German and Dutch roots


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LeoRogers

I wish duolingo would just teach us the literal translations. I'd rather have the literal translation + an explanation of the idiom than it have me translate it to a completely different phrase and make me search for the meaning of the words.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/misha_kms

Guys, I'll keep my fingers crossed for you and Ich drücke dir die Daumen in learning new languages. :-)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/agora_melphys

In Russia this is almost similar: Я буду держать за тебя кулачки (lit. I'll keep hands in fists for you /Ya budu derjat za tebya kulachki) and that gesture looks nearly the same. Also we say Ни пуха ни пера to say Good luck (lit. smth like Niether floccus nor feather, /Ni puha ni pera) that was originally used by hunters who didn't just wish Floccus and feather not to put an evil eye on hunters so they wished the opposit thing. The second phrase is used mainly to wish good luck to a student before the exam and the answer must be К чёрту (lit. To hell with it / K chyortu, but чёрт is an evil creature) that was also not to attract evil spirits. People here are very superstitious so sometimes they literally wish failure because if they wish luck and the case will turn out bad it will mean you put an evil eye on them (сглазить, sglazit). Such wishes for failure are old but are still used and of course now we wish good luck and old the best but we still use such old phrases that originally wish you a failure in order to protect you from misfortune. There is one more strange way to wish a good luck for a student - before the exam he will ask you to berate him, the harder the better. Of course it means that you should just say smth bad about him while he is passing the exam, not (never!) directly to him and usually noone ever really berated the student :))


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/agora_melphys

In Russia this is almost similar: Я буду держать за тебя кулачки (lit. I'll keep hands in fists for you /Ya budu derjat za tebya kulachki) and that gesture looks nearly the same. Also we say Ни пуха ни пера to say Good luck (lit. smth like Niether floccus nor feather, /Ni puha ni pera) that was originally used by hunters who didn't just wish Floccus and feather not to put an evil eye on hunters so they wished the opposit thing. The second phrase is used mainly to wish good luck to a student before the exam and the answer must be К чёрту (lit. To hell with it / K chyortu, but чёрт is an evil creature) that was also not to attract evil spirits. People here are very superstitious so sometimes they literally wish failure because if they wish luck and the case will turn out bad it will mean you put an evil eye on them (сглазить, sglazit). Such wishes for failure are old but are still used and of course now we wish good luck and old the best but we still use such old phrases that originally wish you a failure in order to protect you from misfortune. There is one more strange way to wish a good luck for a student - before the exam he will ask you to berate him, the harder the better. Of course it means that you should just say smth bad about him while he is passing the exam, not (never!) directly to him and usually noone ever really berated the student :))


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/agora_melphys

In Russia this is almost similar: Я буду держать за тебя кулачки (lit. I'll keep hands in fists for you /Ya budu derjat za tebya kulachki) and that gesture looks nearly the same. Also we say Ни пуха ни пера to say Good luck (lit. smth like Niether floccus nor feather, /Ni puha ni pera) that was originally used by hunters who didn't just wish Floccus and feather not to put an evil eye on hunters so they wished the opposit thing. The second phrase is used mainly to wish good luck to a student before the exam and the answer must be К чёрту (lit. To hell with it / K chyortu, but чёрт is an evil creature) that was also not to attract evil spirits. People here are very superstitious so sometimes they literally wish failure because if they wish luck and the case will turn out bad it will mean you put an evil eye on them (сглазить, sglazit). Such wishes for failure are old but are still used and of course now we wish good luck and old the best but we still use such old phrases that originally wish you a failure in order to protect you from misfortune.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/agora_melphys

In Russia this is almost similar: Я буду держать за тебя кулачки (lit. I'll keep hands in fists for you /Ya budu derjat za tebya kulachki) and that gesture looks nearly the same. Also we say Ни пуха ни пера to say Good luck (lit. smth like Niether floccus nor feather, /Ni puha ni pera) that was originally used by hunters who didn't just wish Floccus and feather not to put an evil eye on hunters so they wished the opposit thing. The second phrase is used mainly to wish good luck to a student before the exam and the answer must be К чёрту (lit. To hell with it / K chyortu, but чёрт is an evil creature) that was also not to attract evil spirits.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rich..W

I think that "I am pressing thumbs for you!" should be accepted. Though it might be overly literal to the point of non-idiomacy and includes an unindicated "for", it might help people just beginning to learn German grammar.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/brent444235

It should actually read "I'll hold thumbs for you". The my is implied and not actually used.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KatDraws

I wish Duolingo would just tell you the literal translation with a note about its intent.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MarikasJau1

Why the "I'll" mean "I will" not "I shall" as we learned at school?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KenaiPokoj

I apologise if I sound dumb, but would it not literally translate to "I cross/press to you the thumbs"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mason919955

I put "i'll press my thumbs" and it said it should be "i'll press your thumbs!"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hedi76
  • 1377

The translation is rather: I press my thumbs for you. (I press my thumbs so you will have luck.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VjekoG

Reminds me of the phrase, break a leg... No sense at all :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JamesHamilton5

The Adverb 'nur' can mean -only -merely -simply-solely, how confusing is this and other adverbs in the German language?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cserra

Please more variation on the idioms.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Markus541160

Can someone explain that to me?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Markus541160

Can you please explain to me

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