Words with no equivalent in English? I quite enjoy the plethora of these sites, and that upsets me. I feel that they are somewhat specious – given that English is only one of over 6000ish languages (depending on who you ask), it shouldn’t be so surprising that there are words for which we have no equivalent. Further, when you do discover the meaning of said words, they aren’t particularly amazing – quirky, sure, but not concepts that can’t actually be expressed in English.
There’s a word in German that I absolutely love and which doesn’t have an English equivalent (as far as I know): Regenbogenfamilie. The literal translation would be ‘Rainbow family’. Its meaning: families in which kids are raised by two same-sex partners.
If anything, given that English doesn’t easily have a way to construct words by linking them together like German does for instance, we will always miss out…
Of course, there will always be obscure words, and there will always be inventive artists who decide to teach them to us through bricolage:
Bibliotaph: (n) a person who hides books