Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Schadenfreude



Schadenfreude is my husband's favourite word. (Does anyone else have a favourite word?) It's German really, but the English like to acquire foreign words and make them our own by pronouncing them incorrectly.

It means to take pleasure from someone else's misfortune. I don't do that (unless the person particularly deserves their horrible fate) but sometimes, even as I'm doing my best to help, I think 'that would make a good story'. (Does anyone else do that?)


40 comments:

Heather Holden said...

Hmmm, I don't think I have a favorite word...

I don't take pleasure from someone else's misfortune, either. Well, unless they're my characters! ;)

Frances Garrood said...

I love the opposite to schadenfreude: gluckschmerz (pain at another's luck)! It's what Andy would have felt on Sunday I'd he'd lost the match!

TracyFells said...

Good wood, but a bit of a mouthful. I like words that immediately conjure up images. At the moment these keep cropping up in my stories: bumble, tumble and tingle.

Annalisa Crawford said...

I don't have a favourite word, but I have a favourite place name. Narkers - it makes me laugh whenever we drive past it :-) I've never thought of your posts as being overly punctuated, better to have a bit too much than none at all!

Teresa Ashby said...

I love that word! My favourite words change depending on the mood I'm in :-) x

Wendy's Writing said...

Crepuscule... if you'll excuse my French!

Linda G. said...

I like "defenestration." It means "to throw someone or something out of a window." *grin*

Lindsay said...

I love the word 'eclipse' for the way it sounds and the meanings it conjures up. My daughter's current favourite word is discombobulate. We both like 'defenestration' as above - and once had to defenestrate a sofa.

Henry Mitchell said...

"Paid" would be my favorite word if it ever happened. "Readers" would be a runner-up. Maybe if I could writer gooder.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

By pronouncing them incorrectly - funny!

Mark Koopmans said...

My kids will tell you my favorite word:

NO!

Linda King said...

I'm with Linda G above - defenestration! What a coincidence - same name and we like the same word! I like to threaten to defenestrate the children...

Gary Helm said...

Forget who it was that originally said it but some wise person said that English "follows other languages down dark alleys, knocks them on the head and rifles their pockets for usable or interesting words."

Maggie May said...

I have a word that I overuse and it's 'just'. I have to go through my stories crossing it out!

cheyenne jones said...

My fav word is..............? Pettifogger? I think thats how its spelled, a word to describe a lawyer of cheating ways!!

Kracken said...

I don't have a favorite word that I can think of at the moment. I do know I make up words all the time. Not on purpose really. Kind of like stummy. When I am trying to say my stomach or tummy hurts. I have no idea why it comes out but it does. Same when I type sometimes my letters become numbers. I see an E as an 8 or a P as a 9. I know I am weird.

Anonymous said...

Hi Patsy, thanks for the links. I tried that grammar check, and got 42%. Told me I could have used better words. Schadenfreud, that's a good one. I like rumplestiltskin, but don't get much chance to use it. I think I'll have to go round saying to people, 'you, little rumplestiltskin you.' Or perhaps not.

Patsy said...

Sometimes I feel bad when I make horrible stuff happen to my characters, Heather - but sometimes it's fun.

Patsy said...

That's a good word, Frances. I have sometimes been a little guilty of that.

Patsy said...

Those words do indeed conjure images, Tracy.

Patsy said...

I've always found the name Lower Upham amusing, Annalisa.

Patsy said...

Mine too, Teresa. Actually my favourite anything depends on my mood.

Patsy said...

It's old French, Wendy so I'll let you off.

(OK, I admit I googled it and it doesn't mean what I thought it did)

Patsy said...

That is a good one, Linda.

Patsy said...

I want to know more about the sofa incident, Lindsay.

Patsy said...

Well you'll just have to try even more harderer, Henry!

Patsy said...

Tis true, Alex,

Patsy said...

If you have kids it probably has to be at times, Mark.

Patsy said...

Maybe you'd be better off sharing Mark's word, Linda?

Patsy said...

Great quote, Gary and accurate too.

Patsy said...

It's one of those words which creeps in unnoticed, Maggie - and then breeds!

Patsy said...

Another good one, Cheyenne. Sounds properly insulting too.

Patsy said...

That's a bit unusual, April but making up words seems a perfectly acceptable and creative thing to do.

Patsy said...

Said in the right tone of voice I think it could get you a reaction, Suzy.

Frances Garrood said...

But isn't it reassuring to know there's a word for it? Then at least we're not alone!

Patsy said...

That's true!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Patsy .. I'll find out tomorrow re the Schadenfreude pronunciation .. won't I!

I'll have to think of my 'best' words .. cheers for now - Hilary

Patsy said...

That was one of the few topics we didn't cover!

loverofwords said...

Just found your blog through Hilary and I do love this word. I looked up the pronunciation and was amazed. There is a You Tube pronunciation of the word, but it is so weird, I like mine better. The real pronunciation does not sound "right."

Patsy said...

I say it Shh-ow-don-froyd. Is that even close?