What Russian words were supposed to know the soldiers of the Wehrmacht

History 11/01/20 Which Russian words should have known the soldiers of the Wehrmacht

According to popular stereotype, vocabulary invaded the Soviet Union the Nazis were limited to the words “bollocks”, “trigger” and “with milk”. Actually, ordinary soldiers, and the SS had to learn thousands of Russian words.

PhraseBook Wehrmacht

in 1941 the Berlin publishing house E. S. Mittler & Sohn published a huge circulation model “German-Russian soldier’s dictionary.” It includes 3000 words. Probably, the generals believed that the military will cram them in between fights. Dictionary could really make life easier for the occupants. The words in the book were written in the Russian alphabet, which the Germans were asked to learn for starters, but in case of difficulties beside each word was given its transcription.

on the first page after such innocuous words as “Hello”, “goodbye”, “please” and “thank you,” was the characteristic vocabulary of wartime. For example, “Stop!” and “Hands up!”. The contents of the dictionary destroys the myth that the Nazis originally intended to shamelessly plunder the population. One of the first words that the Wehrmacht soldiers had to learn, was the phrase “How much?”.

“Orange”, “violin”, “casino”

From the second pivot of the book began with the typical questions, which the Germans asked the locals: “was here the soldiers (the partisans)?”, “Where did they go?”, “Did they have machine guns?”, “Just who in the population has a connection with the guerrillas?”. Important to know: “How wide is the brook?” and “Where is the Ford?”.

Without those “food character”, however, has not done. Respecting Fritz had to be able to say: “How many cattle?”, “We need food supplies (bread, meat, milk, flour, butter, eggs)” and “Bring it!”. In the dictionary met and blunders — for example, a rather clumsy phrase “have you Seen parachutes?”.

the Phrase ended with the sentence “We want to sleep here”. The main part of the book was actually a dictionary with the prevalence of military terminology, of words to refer to geographic concepts and everyday objects. It is noteworthy that the conquest of Russia, the Germans could not imagine without the use of such words as “orange”, “violin” and “casino”. At the same time, there was virtually no vocabulary related to the theory of racial superiority and in General with the policy, although the words “Jew”, “farm” and “national socialism” mentioned.

Questioning the “method of enumeration”

79 the pages of “German-Russian dictionary” was no place for expressions used in interrogations. It was not and phrases in case of contact with the prisoner — on this account, the Nazis generally were instructed only to identify yourself and your title and not answering any questions.

In the Preface to the book “scarcity” edition due to the fact that a detailed PhraseBook German soldier especially and is not necessary. Citing the experience of the First world war, the authors argued that it is enough to list the necessary words, not caring about the observance of grammatical rules. The book was really more than enough words to ask about almost anything. But it should either always have a dictionary on hand or to remember all its content. Most of the Germans too lazy to learn Russian language (this does not apply to the Baltic Germans, among whom were many officers and SS men, and who often speak the Russian language at a good level).

“Though they have a special conversation in the communication with the public words still used a little. Brown, Schnell, zuruk nix, gut — it’s so clear. Uterus, with milk, yayka is clear (we have neither). More pantomime,” recalled a resident of one of the occupied villages, the former during the great Patriotic war as a teenager.

we Add that, in contrast to the German edition of the “Russo-German military phrase book”, published in Moscow in 1941, and iss utterances for questioning with the mention of numerous military terms. The reason for this is, of course, the fundamental difference between the army, being in a foreign country and army, reflecting the invasion of the enemy.

Timur Sagdiyev

© Russian Seven

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