Beautiful Foreign Words With No English Translation

Languages are one of my favorite subjects. I find their structure, sonance, and what they can say about a culture very interesting. How an island country can have 30 different words for water while a desert region has only one or two, for example. Some of the coolest words I “collect” are ones that have no direct English translation. These often describe a concept or feeling, an activity or object that there is not so much emphasis on in English speaking regions. I’ve picked out some of my favorite, most beautiful foreign words to share in today’s post.


Origin: German

Definition: A feeling of homesickness for places you’ve never been to.


Origin: Swedish

Definition: The roadlike reflection of the moon on the surface of water.


Origin: Japanese

Definition: Pretending to be out when someone knocks at the door.


Origin: French

Definition: One who strolls aimlessly but enjoyably, observing life and their surroundings.


Origin: Spanish

Definition: A place from which one’s strength is drawn, where one feels at home; the place where you are your most authentic self.


Origin: German

Definition: Wistful longing; a yearning for a far, familiar, unearthly land one can identify as one’s home.


Origin: Swedish

Definition: One who loves life deeply and lives it to the extreme.


Origin: Japanese

Definition: The sunlight that filters through the leaves of the trees.


Origin: German

Definition: The feeling of solitude, being alone in the woods, and a connection to nature.


Origin: French

Definition: The feeling of not being in one’s home country, of being a foreigner.


Origin: Swedish

Definition: To wake up early in the morning with the purpose of going outside to hear the first birds sing.


Origin: Rukwangali

Definition: The act of walking on tiptoe across warm sand.


Origin: Japanese

Definition: Literally “the floating world”, living in the moment, detached from the bothers of life.


Origin: Urdu

Definition: The suspension of disbelief that can occur, often through good storytelling.

Related Posts:

  • Improve Your Travel Vocabulary
  • Most Inspirational Travel Quotes
  • Teaching English Abroad: Dos and Don’ts

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