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Wadenbeißerin

English translation: pit bull

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
German term or phrase:Wadenbeißerin
English translation:pit bull
Entered by: Helen Shiner
Options:
- Contribute to this entry
- Include in personal glossary

15:02 Sep 4, 2008
German to English translations [PRO]
Idioms / Maxims / Sayings
German term or phrase: Wadenbeißerin
Here's the context: "Stattdessen gab sie sich als Wadenbeißerin und Anwältin der kleinen Leute. Eine Person, auf die sich am Abend viele Augen richteten, ließ sie dabei gänzlich unerwähnt."

I see that "Wadenbeißer" is a name for a horse fly in German, but I really don't understand the use of "Wadenbeißerin" in this context.

Thank you in advance!
BrettMN
Local time: 03:46
attack dog / pit-bull [terrier]
Explanation:
I'm afraid I do think that the discussion here is occurring on too polite a level in terms of terminology, that is [Please do continue to be polite to one another.]. As Andrew has suggested, Palin has demonstrably been termed a 'pit-bull', and 'attack-dog' is very often used in the political/journalistic arena - in the UK, think Jeremy Paxman or Charles Clarke to name but two. I cannot see that a mere ankle-biter or gadfly would be of much use to her clients/constituents, surely she is a bit meaner than that!

[If 'pit-bull' is selected, I insist on Andrew getting the points, of course!]

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Note added at 4 hrs (2008-09-04 19:56:13 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

If Palin herself refers to herself as a pit-bull then that must be the term used - the point is that someone has tried to translate that into German with the result: Wadenbeißerin - which we discover is a namby-pamby version when we try to retranslate it. Should we really compound the error?
Selected response from:

Helen Shiner
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:46
Grading comment
I'm going to go with this one, as it was an original English term she used. If German speakers think it's what the German media was attempting to refer to, I think we should use the actual English word Palin used. "Ankle-biter" is a bit soft and unclear for me. Andrew told me to give the points to Helen, though her request to give the points to Andrew was noted. Thanks everyone!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +9Ankle-biter
John O'Brien
4 +4attack dog / pit-bull [terrier]
Helen Shiner
5 -1gadfly
Paul Kachur
3 -1yapper
Holly Breckenridge
Summary of reference entries provided
Caro Maucher
svenfrade

Discussion entries: 13





  

Answers


6 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +9
Ankle-biter


Explanation:
1. ankle-biter
65 up, 12 downlove ithate it

A little kid; a rug rat.
Only ankle-biters like Barney; everyone else wants to barbecue him.
by Cornholio Oct 31, 2003 email it 0 comments
2. ankle-biter
33 up, 7 downlove ithate it

a catch-all term for small dogs who tend, as a group, to be tough, feisty litle beasts and are often touchy and quarrelsome.
many of the terrier breeds
by CRICKLWOOD Apr 15, 2005 email it 0 comments
3. ankle-biter
4 up, 27 downlove ithate it

A person who you briefly dated, who won't let go of the relationship; similar to when a small dog bites your pant leg and can't be shaken off.
Kelly can't take a hint, she continues to call me - she's such an ankle-biter

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Note added at 2 hrs (2008-09-04 17:03:13 GMT)
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Pehaps something like "pesky little beaver" - with a sort of Alaskan connection



    Reference: http://urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=ankle-biter
John O'Brien
Local time: 10:46
Native speaker of: English
Notes to answerer
Asker: "Pesky little beaver" is good due to the Alaskan connotations, but unfortunately "beaver" has another meaning (at least in AmE) when referring to women, which you wouldn't want.


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Sarah Silva: Yes, the term reminds me of a little dog getting something between their teeth and not letting go!
5 mins

neutral  Helen Shiner: In UK EN usage an ankle-biter is generally a small child or relatively harmless small dog - ouch! - I am just wondering whether the German means something a little stronger. I thought of 'attack dog', but that might be too strong. Anything in between?
15 mins
  -> Perhaps something like "pesky little beaver" - including a sort of Allask connection

agree  Inge Meinzer
27 mins

agree  Caro Maucher: I think this is a good option - a Wadenbeißer is also a small and pretty much harmless (if annoying) dog.
32 mins

agree  Ingeborg Gowans: seems to be the right term here/ someone who's "nipping at the heels" of other people and is annoying like a little yappy dog
1 hr

agree  Kim Metzger: Yes, forget about the fly. The term is used metaphorically in German.
1 hr

disagree  Lancashireman: Something stronger required here IMO. This one looks like he would do more than yap and launch feeble assaults on your ankles: http://www.triplextremeknls.com/home.htm
2 hrs

agree  Bernhard Sulzer: dep. on the dog - poss."painful" Bavarian/Austrian variant, Bavarian-English definition: Wadlbeißer(In): A Wadlbeißer is a very cheeky dog in Bavaria, for example a dog which bites the post men in the leg: http://www.d-wadlbeisser.de/en/dictionary.asp#W
2 hrs

agree  NO-EN-DE
2 hrs

neutral  Paul Kachur: little kids are ankle biters (when they get bigger they become tire biters), but in this case, the subject is not acting like a little kid.
3 hrs

agree  jccantrell: How I have heard this, an annoyance.
3 hrs

agree  Sharon Moler: Not restricted to kids in Am. English & agree you definitely don't want beaver!
11 hrs

agree  Harald Moelzer (medical-translator)
14 hrs

neutral  xxxhazmatgerman: This non-N.S. opts for "Neutral", but the DARE indicates use for annoying children only.//@Moler/asker: agree beaver-analogy here surely inappropriate.
16 hrs
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3 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): -1
gadfly


Explanation:
Fron the discussion, I now want to propose an insect over the child/dog, see:

from www.thefreedictionary.com:

gad·fly (gdfl)
n.
1. A persistent irritating critic; a nuisance.
2. One that acts as a provocative stimulus; a goad.
3. Any of various flies, especially of the family Tabanidae, that bite or annoy livestock and other animals.

seems to hit on all the counts.

Paul Kachur
Germany
Local time: 10:46
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 8

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Lancashireman: Getting even further away from the canine imagery used at the Republican convention.
3 hrs
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4 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +4
attack dog / pit-bull [terrier]


Explanation:
I'm afraid I do think that the discussion here is occurring on too polite a level in terms of terminology, that is [Please do continue to be polite to one another.]. As Andrew has suggested, Palin has demonstrably been termed a 'pit-bull', and 'attack-dog' is very often used in the political/journalistic arena - in the UK, think Jeremy Paxman or Charles Clarke to name but two. I cannot see that a mere ankle-biter or gadfly would be of much use to her clients/constituents, surely she is a bit meaner than that!

[If 'pit-bull' is selected, I insist on Andrew getting the points, of course!]

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 4 hrs (2008-09-04 19:56:13 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

If Palin herself refers to herself as a pit-bull then that must be the term used - the point is that someone has tried to translate that into German with the result: Wadenbeißerin - which we discover is a namby-pamby version when we try to retranslate it. Should we really compound the error?

Helen Shiner
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:46
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 74
Grading comment
I'm going to go with this one, as it was an original English term she used. If German speakers think it's what the German media was attempting to refer to, I think we should use the actual English word Palin used. "Ankle-biter" is a bit soft and unclear for me. Andrew told me to give the points to Helen, though her request to give the points to Andrew was noted. Thanks everyone!

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Caro Maucher: Good point.
49 mins
  -> Thank you, Caro!

agree  Lancashireman: Sometimes I wonder if we are all too busy translating Minnesang to watch the news bulletins. There is no substitute for the original: http://www.proz.com/kudoz/german_to_english/journalism/13892...
1 hr
  -> Thanks, Andrew, I wish it was Minnesang!

agree  xxxhazmatgerman: The attack mindset of ambulance chasers comes to mind, which I think fits the person AFAIK from the media. Some vacuousity intentionally included.//as far as i know.//Aren't we all.
12 hrs
  -> Thank you, hazmatgerman - agree with you re vacuous tendencies - what is AFAIK?/I'm not always on top of those acronyms!

agree  Paul Kachur: If it's dogs we want, then Sarah is definitely a pit bull
15 hrs
  -> Thanks, Paul
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6 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): -1
yapper


Explanation:
I like "ankle-biter" initially, but to me it did give me the mental image of a small, annoying child. I know that it can be used to describe a small dog, but I have never heard it used this way in my experience. (I'm American).

To keep the small, annoying dog image, which is probably more relevant in this context, why not go with "yapper" or some similar term which conjurs the image of a dogthat just doesn't stop barking?

Holly Breckenridge
United States
Local time: 04:46
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Lancashireman: Why a 'small dog' when the VP candidate has described herself as a 'pitbull with lipstick'? // Hi Holly. Sorry about the brutal 'disagree' but this question was in danger of wandering further and further off base. Regards AJS
9 mins
  -> Yeah, you're right, Andrew. Now that I'm re-reading the submission and recalling what Palin actually said during her speech last night, maybe the image here shouldn't be of a yappy, annoying presence, but a more fierce protector-type (like a pitbull).
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Reference comments


7 mins
Reference

Reference information:
Wadenbeißer makes one think rather of a small dog than a fly. Basically it's a nuisance, but it can't do any real harm.

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Note added at 44 mins (2008-09-04 15:46:08 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Meiner Ansicht nach geht der Fliegengedanke ("Schmeißfliege"?) in eine andere Richtung. Das erniedrigt die Person stärker und schmeckt nach müffelnden Kuhfladen. Ich weiß allerdings nicht, wie das im Englischen genau ist.
Wadenbeißer ist mir als Bezeichnung für Fliegenviecher auch völlig unbekannt, obwohl ich mich viel in der Nähe von Pferden aufhalte und da genug Lästiges herumschwirrt.
Für mich ist ein Wadenbeißer eindeutig ein kleiner, nerviger Hund.

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Note added at 48 mins (2008-09-04 15:50:31 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Im Übrigen wurden auch Berti Vogts und Frank-Walter Steinmeier (wie Google verrät) gelegentlich als Wadenbeißer bezeichnet...

Caro Maucher
Germany
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in GermanGerman
PRO pts in category: 11
Note to reference poster
Asker: I wonder if "gadfly" might be a translation option?

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1 hr peer agreement (net): +1
Reference

Reference information:
http://www.berlinonline.de/berliner-zeitung/archiv/.bin/dump...

Pinscher und Wadenbeißer waren vor dreißig Jahren in der Bundesrepublik gängige Schimpfnamen, mit denen Journalisten oder andere kritisierende Zeitgenossen vor allem von sich sehr wichtig nehmenden Politikern belegt wurden....

Example sentence(s):
svenfrade
Germany
Native speaker of: Native in GermanGerman
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this reference comment (and responses from the reference poster)
agree  Johanna Timm, PhD: genau! Tucholsky etc.
3 hrs
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Changes made by editors
Sep 5, 2008 - Changes made by Helen Shiner:
Edited KOG entry<a href="/profile/828028">BrettMN's</a> old entry - "Wadenbeißerin" » "pit bull"
Sep 5, 2008 - Changes made by Steffen Walter:
Field (specific)General / Conversation / Greetings / Letters » Idioms / Maxims / Sayings


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