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Re: [ontolog-forum] (OT) German

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Duane Nickull <dnickull@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 08 Jan 2008 11:21:58 -0800
Message-id: <C3A90D56.AE29%dnickull@xxxxxxxxx>
And also (take it with a grain of salt, it is humor).    (01)

 wrote:    (02)

>> Seems to me that German is far more orderly and predictable
>> than English, even independent of the issue of spelling, where
>> German is the very model of consistency compared to the chaos
>> of English.    (03)

Don't even get me started on their lack of proper ontology for animals in
natural German language.    (04)

Examples:    (05)

1. A toad is a "krote".  A turtle is named a Schildkrote which somehow
implies it is a toad that acquired a sheild, rather than unique genus.    (06)

2. Schinktier - the name for a skunk. Very literal if you ask me (means
"smelly animal")    (07)

3. Nilepferd.  Rather than recognizing a hippopotamus as a distinct species,
the Germans consider it a Pferd (Horse) that swims in the Nile.  Perhaps
this is perhaps why so many German tourists try to encourage Nilepferds into
weight loss programs??    (08)

4. Nasehorn:  again, a literal name for the Rhinocerous, a noble beast who
might be a bit sensitive about the appendage sticking out of the middle of
its' forehead.  IMO, not polite to give it a name to constantly remind it of
the growth.    (09)

5. Waschbehr: This is the German name for a Raccoon.  They assume it is a
small bear (behr) that washes itself (wasch) rather than a distinct species.    (010)

With these examples, I am often surprised that bees are not called "small
flying bears" or "miniature yellow levitating zebras".    (011)

;-)    (012)

Okay - sorry.  For the record I love German culture and live there a few
months every year and could not help using this forum to share these
observations.    (013)

Duane    (014)

"Speaking only for myself"
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