20 Foreign Words That Lose Their Scope When Translated Into English

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3:00 pm 6 Apr, 2016


Though English is the language that connects most of the world, in some instances, it doesn’t have as wide a scope as some other languages. Here are some words that have powerful or deep meanings in other languages, but they aren’t that easy to translate into English.


1. These are the moments regrets are made of.

Wordless look


2. It’s the dull ache of a soul that has nothing to long for.

spiritual anguish


3. You know the power of these types of jokes.

Bad joke laughter


4. For this word, Milan Kundera said, “I find it difficult to imagine how anyone can understand the human soul without it.”

self misery


5. Sometimes parents think they know what’s best when then don’t.

Pushy mother


6. Now this is a word that happens to me quite often.



7. There should be a limit to how many times you take “I’m sorry” seriously.



8. We’ve all been there.

missed calls


9. There are some moments that define people in love.

fingers through hair


10. The literal translation of this word is “gate-closing panic”.

missed opportnities


11. Can we just call this ‘inner peace’?

at peace



12. Fado music is a type of mournful singing, which is related to saudade.
Loving something lost


13. That away from home feeling.

Away from home


14. Waiting for loved ones to come home sees the slowest passing of time.

Waiting dog


15. This is a word that we see in action almost every day.



16. I hope you don’t have any such friends…and that you aren’t one yourself.

constant borrowing


17. A warm, friendly and cozy demeanor is ‘hyggelig’.

Good friends


18. The literal translation is ‘the call of the void’.

jumping instinct


19. This word makes me both happy and sad.

you bury me


20. The word originally described a spirit that possessed humans and made them feel in awe of nature.

art effect


Words via matadornetwork.