Saturday, April 5, 2014

World War I Name Game

In the midst of World War least a full year into the war between Prussian Germany and France, England and Russia.....there was this flurry of activity against all things related to the English, the Russians, and the French.....especially the language things.

So, some German general wrote up a list of official words which would not be considered proper in use around Germany.  "Hotel", "cafe" and "chauffeur" came up rather quickly on this list.

This kinda meant that if you were the hotel'd get this letter and have just a couple of days to change the sign on the front of the building, and go by something totally different.

Germans usually are respectful in cases like this.  But they also can feel frustrated, and just plain go cynical and sarcastic.

So, a hotel manager in Berlin went to the extreme of sending a letter back to the general who'd signed the document.  The manager noted....that the word "General" is also French....and perhaps it should be banned as well?

After that brief note.....nothing much came out of the name-game business of the Prussian military.  And the Generals kept their status symbol.....even if it was sounding like French.  

No comments: