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More words that don't exist in English

Is anyone familiar enough with some of these to put them into a sentence?

Mamihlapinatapei (Yagan): The wordless, yet meaningful look shared by two people who both desire to initiate something but are both reluctant to start.

Tartle (Scottish): The act of hesitating while introducing someone because you've forgotten their name.

Cafuné (Brazilian Portuguese): The act of tenderly running one's fingers through someone's hair.

Tingo (Pascuense): The act of taking objects one desires from the house of a friend by gradually borrowing all of them. (I wonder if this has a positive or negative connotation? My first thought was of people dating who end up with each other's sweatshirts. But, perhaps it is describing people who steal by borrowing?)

Duende (Spanish): The mysterious power that a work of art has to deeply move a person.

To read the article's full list of 20 words Click Here

The above were my favorites (the jury is out on Tingo though). Which ones were yours?

May 29, 2017


[deactivated user]

    Definitely Fernweh.


    I wouldn’t call the 13th entry on that list, l’appel du vide, a “word”.

    Number 8 is misspelled; it should end with -panik, not -planik.

    My French-English dictionary gives the one-word definition “disorientation” as one of the meanings of dépaysement ; it doesn’t offer the definition that’s in the article.

    My German-English dictionary gives the one-word definition “wanderlust” for Fernweh.

    I wonder if “tartle” came from “turtle”, as sort of a chelonian equivalent of sheepishness, or if it came from the Scottish Gaelic analogue to Irish tairdeal, possibly referring to an excursion of the mind in recalling someone’s name?


    > My German-English dictionary gives the one-word definition “wanderlust” for Fernweh.

    Which is fitting, but also amusing since "wanderlust" is a loanword from German. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wanderlust


    Duolingo ate my response T_T

    I was very happy that you got into contemplating the evolution of the word. A journey through the evolution of a word makes a discussion twice as interesting.

    Also, good catch on that typo!


    As it happens, A Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue theorizes that “tartle” came from Old English tealtrian, which if true would make it cognate to English “totter”.

    There are two different “tartle” words, with separate entries in the Scottish National Dictionaryhere and here. As a verb, the first “tartle” (with the meaning from the list) can be either transitive or intransitive:

    I couldna tartle't him at a'. I tartled on him at yince.

    A lassie, tartlin' on him, speired Gif he was no' a crony.

    The first “tartle” (with its “hesitate” meaning) lends credence to the proposed tealtrian origin; the second “tartle” has a different origin.

    EDIT: The earliest known written forms of both the first “tartle” and táirdiol, the ancestor of tairdeal, only appeared in the 17th century, so there might not be a Scottish Gaelic analogue to tairdeal.


    Thanks for the follow up!


    我喜欢 Jayus


    I could use Tartle on a weekly basis. Names just do not stick, in my mind. "This is a guy I know from work. We've worked together for over a year. uh uhh I am tartleing" ?

    Now if I can just remember "tartle".


    Of the ones on that list, I like Wabi-sabi, Illunga and Fernweh. Probably because those three words describe me really well.

    Illunga.... why don't we have a word like that in our language? We have to tell whole stories around Illunga but the Tshiluba language sums it up in a nice little word!

    Edit: I looked up Tshiluba (also known as Luba-Kasai) and apparently Illunga is the hardest word to translate: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/3830521.stm


    Duende means elf.


    'Scottish'? Scottish is not a language, is that Scots or Scots Gaelic?


    Cafuné <3

    Fun fact: Duende means this in Brazilian Portuguese. =D


    In Spanish too!
    The meaning given in the article comes from Flamenco


    Thanks Vivisaurus!

    That is another aspect about language evolution that is very cool, sometimes it isn't just the spelling that can change, but, the meanings can take on different applications or connotations for better or worse.

    While reading through that page you linked, it mentioned the Japanese Youkai. It brought me back to an anime series I watched two years ago called Mushishi (Rated PG). I recommend it for folks who are learning Japanese. It is a very beautiful series and shows beautiful, neutral, and tragic happenings people might have attributed to youkai. Not very action oriented. More of a visual and introspective sort of journey. :)


    My favorite is Tingo.


    I find things like this fascinating. I showed my mother this and she got a kick out of it. Awesome stuff.


    A lot of these are so true, meaning we could use them all the time. My dad tartles (I probably didn't use that right) all the time.


    "My dad tartles". I hope it's used that way. I'm planning to use it that way lol.


    These would be so useful if there were English words for these :(


    In Chinese there is the idea of yuanfen, which is a sort of fate that draws two people together and causes them to cross paths often.


    Shakespeare calls it "Star-crossed lovers"


    "Gheirat" (غیرت) in Persian.

    I've seen versions of it exist in different cultures but never found a word for it, in English at least.

    If I was to summarize what it means in a gif:

    How I define it with words:

    That feeling of jealousy, wanting to tell other people that your significant other (SO) belongs to you, or wanting to preserve your social status because of your relationship .


    1. When a woman says "Eyy bi don't talk with my man you sl. That's my man", she has a lot of gheirat, and a proportional level of anger.

    2. When a man feels uncomfortable about other men staring at his SO, he has gheirat, and he'd probably tell her to dress more conservatively which furthers his gheirat. It's not because he wants to oppress her but protect her. He feels other men will do bad things to her because of the way she's dressed.

    3. When a woman tells a man not to talk to other girls, because she feels he'll cheat on her.

    Wiktionary defines the Persian "gheirat" as:

    the tendency to control the female members of the family—and sometimes the clan, tribe, or motherland—and to protect them from sexual attention

    the desire to rise against oppression, or to defend the powerless

    being conjured to action for the sake of wounded pride or indignity

    zeal, enthusiasm, ardor, fervency

    As you can see, most of the definitions have to do with protection, but a side effect of protection is the tendency of control which makes gheirat seem oppressive in nature.

    Excuse my language, but the opposite of gheirat (the antonym) is called "bi gheirat" (lit. lacking gheirat), which closely translates to "cuckold".

    edit: point (3), and the antonym of gheirat.


    Thank you for introducing me to this new word. I had not read of "Gheirat" before.

    As an aside, "He feels other men will do bad things to her because of the way she's dressed." Hopefully, he will start putting the blame on men and not on the way she dresses. Then, the real problem can be properly addressed.


    Gheirat is a feeling of jealousy in my opinion. Jealousy does not always surface as a rational reaction to an issue. So I agree that the real problem doesn't always get addressed with gheirat when one "controls" their sigificant other: Whether that means the girlfriend tells the boyfriend not to talk to other girls, or the boyfriend tells the girlfriend to dress up conservatively.


    This is a hard challenge. Let me think...


    My favourite word, Bakku-Shan, is not in the article. It is a necessary word that does not exist neither in English nor Spanish.


    Really shows how beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I thought the face picture was amazing. I wonder if the designs have cultural significance. In my ignorance, it reminds me of Dia de los Muertos. Though, this begins to get away from the original purpose of this post. So, I'll stop with this comment. :)


    Oh, we have a word for that in Puerto Rico, but it is compound of 2 expletives so I won't post it...


    Good one, if it takes a sentence to translate it, it's worthy of being mentioned.

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