untranslatable words from other languages


Anjana Iyer set out to illustrate 100 foreign words that have no one-word translation in English. She published one poster a day until day 42, and then she either ran out of steam or she’s still in the middle of the project, I can’t tell. Here are my favorites, probably because they all describe experiences I have had myself:



The Japanese seem to have a lot of words that we don’t to describe lovely interactions with nature. On a botanic gardens walking tour I learned the word shinrin-yoku, or forest bathing – otherwise known as a leisurely walk through the woods – which was suggested as a way to beat the winter blues. (It works! Unless winter lasts six unendurable months, in which case all bets are off.)

Anjana’s website is here.

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