Eunoia: The Internet’s Dictionary of Untranslatable Words


             Chart of languages and their untranslatable words on Eunoia. 

Created in just 24 hours by Steph Smith, Eunoia offers hundreds of untranslatable words in a useful and accessible online dictionary. Eunoia is itself an untranslatable word meaning a “well-mind” or “beautiful thinking.” The user can search Eunoia’s database by “language, tag, or the word itself. There are over 500 words in the database, across 50+ languages and 50+ tags.”

The language with the highest untranslatable words was German; from the well-known Schadenfreude, which means to be happy at someone else’s misfortune, to the complicated Jein, meaning both yes and no. Russian also provided a rich trove of untranslatable words: Nutro– something that governs your inner being; Stushevatsya – ‘to fade into the background.’ Eunoia is an ongoing crowdsourced project and is open to new word suggestions.

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