25 English Words That Hilariously Mean Something Else In Other Languages

English is a funny language, we all know that. But today it has become the lingua franca of the world. That is certainly a good thing. As an English speaker you can comfortably travel almost anywhere in the world. Even if you are visiting remote tribes, most translators are capable of at least some level of communication in English. We all know that North America, Australia, and the British Isles speak English. But so does most of Africa, a significant portion of Asia (to which India and Pakistan contribute significantly), and almost everybody in Northern Europe. And right now we are only talking about people who consider themselves fluent. In fact, there has never been a language in history that has commanded such widespread influence. Even Latin was contained to only a few continents at best. Either way, the advantages of using English can also be quite comical. Because it has borrowed heavily from other languages, many words often sound the same. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be careful. Although in English a “pet” is an animal you keep at home, don’t think that in French it’s the same. If you tell a Frenchman that your pet stinks, he will understand that your fart stinks! That’s right, “pet” means fart in French! These are 25 English Words That Hilariously Mean Something Else In Other Languages!

Featured Image: Istanbul’daki Yunanistan via Flickr

25

Brat

BratSource: reddit, Image: pixabay

In Russian, it means “brother” (брат)

24

Fart

FartSource: reddit, Image: pixabay

In Norwegian, fart means “speed” i.e. how fast you are traveling.

23

Gary

GarySource: reddit, Image: pixabay

Although the pronunciation is a bit slanted. “Gary” is essentially the Japanese word for “diarrhea”. So, for all the Gary’s planning on visiting Japan…you’ve been warned.

22

Bra

BraSource: reddit, Image: pixabay

In Swedish, it means “good”

21

Smoking

SmokingSource: reddit, Image: Kent Wang via Flickr

In French, this is a tuxedo.

20

Retard

RetardSource: reddit, Image: pixabay

Another word with a different meaning in French, this time it means “delay”

19

Die

DieSource: reddit

In Italian, this literally translates to “from” but colloquially it means “Come on!”.

18

Gift

GiftSource: reddit, Image: pixabay

Possibly one of the most ironic words on this list, in German “gift” means “poison”.

17

Sean Bean

Sean BeanSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

Although the pronunciation is different in Irish, the spelling is exactly the same. Sean Bean (the actor) translates to “old woman”.

16

Crap

CrapSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

In Romanian, this means “carp”, as in the fish. In fact, many of the fish egg salads sold in Romania have the word “crap” plastered on them.

15

Vader

VaderSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

In Dutch, it means “father”.

14

Trombone

TromboneSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

In French, this is a paperclip.

13

Kiss

kissSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

In Swedish, “kiss” means “pee”.

12

Dump

DumpSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

This means “bump” in Swedish. If you’ve been paying attention you’ll have noticed that “speed bump” in Swedish would be “fart dump”.

11

Air

AirSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

In Indonesian, this means “water”.

10

Pepperoni

PepperoniSource: reddit, Image: pixabay

In Italian, this is a chili pepper.

9

Handy

HandySource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

This means “cellphone” in German

8

Hammer

HammerSource: reddit

Also in German, this means “awesome” i.e. Das ist so hammer! (That is so awesome!)

7

Mist

MistSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

Yet again in German, this means “manure”.

6

Ohio

OhioSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

If you say this to a Japanese person they will understand “good morning”

5

Pet

PetSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

In French this means “fart”. So when you go to Paris, be careful when talking about your pets.

4

Barf

BarfSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

In Hindi, Urdu, and Farsi, this means “snow”

3

Eagle

EagleSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

If you say “eagle” in German, it sounds like the word for “hedgehog”.

2

No

NoSource: reddit

In Polish, Czech and some other Slavic languages this can actually mean “yes”.

1

lol

lolSource: reddit, Image: wikipedia

It actually means “fun” in Dutch. So “we hebben lol” translates to  “we are having fun”.



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