sprach·​ge·​fühl | \ ˈshpräḵ-gə-ˌfᵫl How to pronounce sprachgefühl (audio) \

Definition of sprachgefühl

1 : the character of a language
2 : an intuitive sense of what is linguistically appropriate

Did You Know?

Sprachgefühl was borrowed into English from German at the end of the 19th century and combines two German nouns, Sprache, meaning "language, speech," and Gefühl, meaning "feeling." (Nouns are capitalized in German, and you'll occasionally see sprachgefühl capitalized in English too, as in our second example.) We're quite certain that the quality of sprachgefühl is common among our readers, but the word itself is rare, making only occasional appearances in our language.

First Known Use of sprachgefühl

1894, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sprachgefühl

German, from Sprache language + Gefühl feeling

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The first known use of sprachgefühl was in 1894

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Cite this Entry

“Sprachgefühl.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sprachgef%C3%BChl. Accessed 21 Apr. 2021.

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