Artist Explains Untranslatable Words Explained By Charming Illustrations

The English language contains one million, twenty-five thousand, one hundred and nine words. Even so, there are some words that don’t exist in English language but do in others, used to describe certain feelings and situations. There are situations in life that can make the biggest vocabulary master struggle to put them to paper. Situations so fascinating, gruesome or unknown that we just can’t get the exact sequence of letters to express them.

But have you ever thought borrowing phrases from other languages?

London-based illustrator Marija Tiurina designed a series of fascinating drawings titled “Untranslatable Words.” It features 13 words that don’t have direct equals in the English language.

Check out some of our favorites below.

Cafuné ( Brazilian-Portuguese): the act of tenderly running fingers through someone’s hair

160

 

Palegg (Norwegian): anything and everything that you can put on a slice of bread

237

 

Gufra (Arabic): the amount of water that can be held in a hand

357

 

Baku-Shan (Japanese): a beautiful girl – as long as she is being viewed from behind

420

 

Schlimazl (Yiddish): a chronically unlucky person

518

 

Duende (Spanish): the mysterious power that a work of art has to deeply move a person

623

 

Age-Otori (Japanese): to look worse after a haircut

719

 

Kyoikumama (Japanese): a mother who relentlessly pushes her children toward academic achievement

812

 

L’appel Duvide (French): instinctive urge to jump from high places

932

 

Luftmensch (Yiddish): refers to someone who is a bit of a dreamer, and literally means “air person”

1010

 

Tretar (Swedish): is a second refill, or “threefill”

1116

 

Torchlusspanik (German): the fear of diminishing opportunities as one ages

1214

 

Schadenfreude (German): feeling of pleasure derived by seeing another’s misfortune

1312

 

Tingo (Pascuense): the act of taking objects one desires from the house of a friend by gradually borrowing all of them

1412

H/T aplus

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