Random Foreign Language Vocabulary and Mnemonics, Part II

Note: Nouns are accompanied by the appropriate definite articles.

The German word for “drawer” is “die Schublade.” The first syllable of the noun sounds like “shoe,” so just picture all your shoes stuffed in a drawer. It’s a bizarre image but it works; mnemonics are always bizarre. 

The German word for “doorknob” is “der Türknopf.” The first syllable of the noun sounds like “turn” but with a shortened vowel. Picture someone saying “turn” in a slow, exaggerated manner with their hand on a doorknob.

The German word for “to mix” is “mischen.” Think: “What are you doing?” “Well, I’m baking a cake and mischen all these ingredients together!”

The German word for “graceful” is “anmutig.” This is a tough one. I’ll admit I don’t have anything clever. But mnemonics don’t have to make sense, so just try to remember a ballerina gracefully dancing on a large stage with the word “anmutig” in huge neon lights above her.

The French word for “drawer” is “le tiroir.” The second syllable of this noun is the same sound as the second syllable of “armoire,” which is a wardrobe. Try to make a mental connection. A tiroir could be part of an armoire.

The French word for “doorknob” is “le poignée de porte.” This is another tough one. I got nothing. Any suggestions?

The French word for “to mix” is “mélanger.” Picture a fruit salad with different types of melons in it. Mixing melons. A mix of melons. Mélanger.

The French word for “graceful” is “gracieux.” This almost sounds as if someone is starting to say “graceful” in a French accent. Remember that the French language is graceful, so that all you have to do with the word “graceful” itself is say it more gracefully.

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