from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Nonsense (from Middle High German / Old High German nonsensical / nonsense : no sense, no sense, powerless, unconscious, insane, insane, crazy, angry, deluded, foolish, delirious) is a sentence , expression or concept that has been detached from substance, meaning and logic to a fact or an opinion - sometimes (intentionally) jokingly. Nonsense is different from senselessness and hopelessness.

Sound poem KARAWANE (Hugo Ball, 1917)

In 1916 nonsensical or nonsensical poems ( nonsense poetry ) and texts were presented as anti-art in the Dadaism movement . The movement is considered to be a reaction to the experience of the futility of the First World War . Hugo Ball recited phonetic poems in Zurich .

The linguist Noam Chomsky referred to the phrase “ Colorless green ideas sleep furiously. ”(German:“ Colorless green ideas sleep angrily. ”) As an example of a nonsensical, but syntactically grammatical sentence. Logically , that doesn't make any sense, because ideas aren't green and don't sleep; what is green cannot be colorless, and angry sleep is eliminated. In poetry, on the other hand, such a sentence can definitely have a meaning.

The word hardly seems to have been used in proverbs, because there are only two examples in Wanders Deutsches Sprichormen-Lexikon (5 volumes, published 1866–1880) (“Nonsense shears the sow and sings the sheep”).

In literature, some works can be classified as nonsense . A children's book from the 1970s, recognizable by its title, can be classified here: nonsense - pictures, rhymes and stories . The book presents nonsense texts by various authors for children.

Harry Frankfurt claims in his book On Bullshit : “ Bullshit is a greater enemy of the truth than lies are ” (German: “Nonsense is a greater enemy of the truth than lies”).

Word field

Partly synonymously used expressions (especially from dialects ) are: absurdity , nonsense , harbor cheese, Humbug , cheese , Kappes (actually white cabbage ), Kladderadatsch , tosh , Larifari , balderdash , nonsense , nonsense , nonsense , balderdash , nonsense , foolishness. Foolishness and madness have something of daring audacity. Some of the various synonymous expressions have slight differences in meaning and different connotations (undertones).

See also


Text collection

  • Klaus Peter Dencker (editor): German nonsense poetry . Philipp Reclam jun., Stuttgart 1978, ISBN 3-15-029890-3 .

Web links

Wiktionary: nonsense  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Max Höfler: German book of names of diseases. Munich 1899, pp. 651 and 919.
  2. ^ Friedrich Kluge , Alfred Götze : Etymological dictionary of the German language . 20th ed., Ed. by Walther Mitzka , De Gruyter, Berlin / New York 1967; Reprint (“21st unchanged edition”) ibid 1975, ISBN 3-11-005709-3 , p. 806.
  3. ^ Nonsense - pictures, rhymes and stories . rotfuchs 66, 480- ISBN 3-499-20066-X ).
  4. Ulrich Ammon et al. a .: German variant dictionary . De Gruyter, Berlin 2004, ISBN 3-11-016574-0 , p. 323 ( online at Google Books ).
  5. ^ Entry cheese , Duden. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  6. Kappes in; Retrieved March 3, 2017
  7. ^ Society for German Language , accessed on March 27, 2012.