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Topic: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Replies: 44   Last Post: Dec 3, 2006 5:58 AM

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Helmut Richter

Posts: 164
Registered: 7/4/06
Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Posted: Nov 28, 2006 3:59 AM
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[Followup-To: alt.usage.german]

On Mon, 27 Nov 2006, sttscitrans@tesco.net wrote:

> Helmut Richter wrote:

> > Even the more or less literal translation "bei dem ist eine Schraube
> > locker" would work. But all these, including the direct "der spinnt", just
> > imply some malfunction of the brain. A "Spinner", however, has a working
> > brain producing lots of ideas - weird ones -, which would not work without
> > a fair amount of intelligence, albeit non-standard.

>
> "Er ist ein Spinner" , "Der spinnt" - as far as usage is concerned
> I don't see the difference between them. These are the
> common, general ways of saying someone is mad or crazy.
> The idea of producing a lot of weird ideas is more closely
> associated with a "fantasist" or "confabulist". I think a crank is
> usually a
> monomaniac.
>
> Wahrig, Spinner: Jemand , der spinnt, der dummes Zeug redet oder
> nicht ernst zu nehmenede Dinge redet.


When I wrote that I see a somewhat different emphasis between the verb and
the noun, I judged from my feel for language, not from dictionaries. To
check that, I looked up the translations in a dictionary (Langenscheidt,
2001) and found:

spinnen (this meaning): be mad (or: nuts, crazy, off one's nut), talk
rubbish (rot)

Spinner (this meaning): crackpot, screwball

To me, the choice of English equivalents seems to imply the same slight
shift in emphasis I tried to explain. But again, my mastery of such fine
distinctions in English is scant.

--
Helmut Richter


Date Subject Author
11/27/06
Read Need German equivalent of "crank"
Larry Hammick
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Gottfried Helms
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Iain Davidson
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Helmut Richter
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Bart Goddard
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Dave Seaman
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Helmut Richter
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Iain Davidson
11/28/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Helmut Richter
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Jan Kristian Haugland
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Dik T. Winter
11/29/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Nick
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
marcus_b
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Hero
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Nick
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Larry Hammick
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Dennis Ritchie
11/28/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
marcus_b
11/28/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Michael Press
11/28/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Larry Hammick
11/29/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Michael Press
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Pubkeybreaker
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Randy Poe
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Gottfried Helms
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Robert Israel
11/28/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Dik T. Winter
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Gerry Myerson
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Nick
11/27/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Iain Davidson
11/29/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Nick
12/1/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Iain Davidson
12/1/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Gottfried Helms
11/28/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
BDH
11/28/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
galathaea
11/28/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Proginoskes
11/29/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Nick
11/29/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
ZZBunker
11/30/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Nick
11/30/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
ZZBunker
12/1/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Nick
12/1/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Nick
12/2/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Hauke Reddmann
12/2/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Nick
12/2/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Bart Goddard
12/3/06
Read Re: Need German equivalent of "crank"
Nick

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