German: a Beautiful Language

Authored By:

Lucas C.

Before we start, let’s play a game. Take a guess at what these words mean, or maybe just try and say them out loud:




Ok, these are not necessarily easy words in English either (keep reading for translations!) and I did copy them all from my physics homework, but they might give you an idea of what the German language entails. 

In a couple words, the German language is intricate, complex, and certainly formidable. But an adjective I would like to highlight and wholeheartedly ascribe to the language is: beautiful.

Now, if you were to ask someone to name a beautiful language, you could expect to hear Italian, French, or maybe Arabic. German is not an extremely common answer. 

Why is that?

Is it because of the extremely long words? Maybe the difficult grammatical genders and cases? Could it be the harsh pronunciation?

Admittedly, those answers aren't without merit (Dativ and Genative I hate you!) but, as with anything else, a holistic approach is imperative.

Let’s take a closer look.


Long Words

There is no getting around it: German sticks words together like it's making a sandwich. Although, if you think about it, it’s pretty practical.

Let’s use the words I used above as an example:

Winkelgeschwindigkeit translates to angular velocity (winkel = angle, geschwindigkeit = velocity).

Zentripetalbeschleunigung translates to centripetal acceleration (zentripetal = centripetal, beschleunigung = acceleration.)

Hauptenergielieferanten translates to main energy sources (haupt = main, energie = energy, Lieferant = supplier.)

See? These extremely long words make sense. This is particularly helpful when you come across a word you aren't familiar with and can break it down to find its meaning. I know a 24-letter word is intimidating, but once you know the smaller ones, putting them together is a breeze.



I'll be honest, I tend to struggle with German grammar and I honestly dislike it in English as well. Furthermore, I don’t even think difficult grammar should be something that counts against a language’s beauty. All languages have a difficult aspect to them and require hard work and consistent effort to learn. French is generally considered one of the most beautiful languages but spelling a French word is never straightforward - half the letters are silent! Don’t be fooled by their amazing food and dashing mustaches, French is also hard.

Luckily, I haven't had to learn extensive grammar. I have the privilege of learning German in Germany and after a while you develop a feeling for the language (clarification: my feeling for the language is still coming along - like a sloth, meandering its way to a piece of fruit.) At the same time, learning German in a classroom just requires memorization. Grabbing some flashcards and putting in the time always pays off. And always remember what a little old lady would probably say: nothing in life that's easy is worth it.



I’ve not always thought this, but I really enjoy how German sounds. This is certainly something  personal, and everybody has a different taste, but don’t throw German out the window because of its harsh sounds. Instead, have fun with it. If you don’t laugh while trying to pronounce an ü, you’re not doing it right. On that thought, I always have so much fun learning new words or phrases. A lot of German pronunciation is frankly silly and there's so many everyday words that crack me up. For example, instead of saying auw when something hurts, Germans say auwa. A grin sneaks onto my face every time I see a full grown adult rub their elbow and with a pout say, “auwa.” 

There's so many words that are a delight to say and hear! My favorites are auwa, Pferd (horse), Knoblauch (garlic), Schmetterling (butterfly), Semmel (bread roll), Lederhosen (traditional Bavarian clothing) e.t.c…

Maybe that’s why I like German so much. Being able to laugh and have fun is definitely something to consider when talking about the appeals of a language.


Although short (I didn’t even cover the amazing German music, and poems!), I hope this post made the idea of learning German, or just German in general, more appealing. If you’re thinking about applying for a year abroad, just make sure you approach the language with an open mind. The German language has so much to offer, you just have to give it a chance. And, after a bit of exposure, I’m sure you’ll agree when I say the German language is absolutely beautiful.