Embarrassment was in the 18./19. Century in the meaning of "shame", " shame " from the French blâmer ("rebuke") formed anew. So it is not a matter of borrowing, but of pseudo Gallicism . The French blâmer goes back to the Latin blasphemare “to blaspheme”, “to abuse”. The verb “embarrassing” meaning “exposing, shaming” has been used in the German-speaking area since the 17th century. The adjective “embarrassing” for “shameful” has been in use since the 19th century.
- A snapshot is the fixed embarrassment of a careless movement, a crooked smile, a carefully hidden observation ... Suddenly everything is in the daytime.
- ( Kurt Tucholsky , in A picture is worth a thousand words , 1926)
The German word exposure refers to the naked exposure of the person in his nakedness ( nakedness ) in front of other people.
- Georg Verweyen: literary embarrassment: representation and function of an embarrassing topos in the German-language literature of the 18th to 20th century. LIT Verlag, 2009, ISBN 978-3-8258-1977-4 ( online ).
- Christian Saehrendt : Disgrace! Story of embarrassment. Bloomsbury, Berlin 2012 ( author interview on the subject of “embarrassment” (2012) ).
- Knaur, The German Dictionary. Lexicographical Institute, Munich 1985, p. 215.
- Mackensen - Large German Dictionary. Südwest Verlag, Munich 1977.
- Duden "Etymologie" - dictionary of origin of the German language. 2nd Edition. Dudenverlag, 1989.