Monday, February 22, 2016

MopDog Monday: Useful & Untranslatable

Do you like words in other languages that are impossible to translate, but describe very specific things very well?
Here is one to kick off your week:

MADÁRLÁTTA

Literally means "bird-seen," "seen by the birds." It refers to food that you took with you somewhere and then didn't eat so you took it back home.
For example, if you take a sandwich to a field trip, and then forget to eat it all day and you bring it back home in the evening, you might feed it to your dog saying "here, have some madárlátta." The term originates form the time when people went to work on the fields all day, and returned home in the evening, sometimes with leftovers from their lunch.

7 comments:

  1. This would be a good A to Z theme. I enjoy all of your translations from Hungarian to English.

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  2. That's an interesting translation, BUT what if there were no birds where you were when you had your food???? Therefore, no birds saw it! =O

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    1. Then you have to find a bird and show it the food, obviously. :D

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    2. Haha love this reply. Also, how bad is it that I didn't remember this word? �� I used to laugh at emigrants who took up an eccentric and forgot their own language and now, here I am...
      Andrea

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  3. Sounds like the expression doggy bag.

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  4. I love words without real translations. I've stumbled across so many in my Russian dictionary, such as one word which means "to have difficulty pronouncing L and R." There's another word I found which is the Russian equivalent of Irish twins, and now I'm going back through the dictionary trying to find it again. I now bookmark pages with words like that, so I can come back to them later and record them.

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    1. We also have a word for not being able to roll your R's properly :D

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