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25 brilliant words that can not be translated into English

February 15, 2019

Every language has a bunch of words that are more or less untranslatable in English or other languages. In today’s blog post, we have a collection of twenty-five brilliant Spanish, German, Swedish and Finnish words that can not be translated into English. Often, words and expressions that are untranslatable describe features of local culture, climate or typical national characteristics that might not even exist in other countries. Enjoy! Untranslatable German words Wanderlust = A strong desire to travel and see the world.…

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Valentine’s Day is approaching – check out these fun date tips from Sweden, Germany, Spain and England

February 1, 2019

Valentine’s Day is approaching, and you might be planning to do something special together with your spouse. Or maybe you’re single but planning to ask a certain interesting person out? In either case, this year you could try something different from the traditional “dinner and movie” date. In this blog post, we’ve collected a few different date ideas from Sweden, Germany, Spain and England. Feel free to try these at home! Not romantically involved at the moment or have nobody…

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Ways to express you didn’t hear or understand

January 25, 2019

Imagine you’re having a conversation in a foreign language and simply can’t understand what somebody just said to you. What do you do then? At least I often find myself blurting out something slightly rude like “What?” or “Huh?” instead of a nicer, more sensible reaction. In very informal speech, such as with close friends, it may be alright to use expressions like “Huh?” or “What?” in English, German or Spanish when you couldn’t hear or understand somebody, but in…

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Short forms in English – Typical mistakes to avoid

January 18, 2019

Short forms (also known as contractions) are used frequently in informal and spoken English. The following are some very common examples: I’m (= I am) you’re (= you are) he’s (= he is / he has) she’s (= she is / she has) I’ll (= I will) I’ve (= I have) I’d (= I would / I had) don’t (= do not) doesn’t (= does not) didn’t (= did not) isn’t (= is not) hasn’t (= has not) can’t (=…

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How to host an English tea party

January 11, 2019

What do you think of when you hear the words “English tea party”? Victorian ladies, priceless heirloom porcelain, a stately home and rigid etiquette? Maybe this was the case in the 19th century, but this originally aristocratic custom has come a long way since then. These days, hotels and tea rooms serve afternoon tea, and hosting a tea party for friends is a little bit of accessible luxury and enjoyment. For those who would like to host their own tea…

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Best phrases and tips for phone calls in English

January 4, 2019

I have always felt like it’s harder to speak a foreign language on the phone than face to face. It’s especially difficult to understand native English speakers on the phone, because sometimes they speak very fast and with a heavy accent. On the phone, you can’t even use gestures and expressions to aid communication, but have to put every message into words as clearly and fluently and possible. For this post, I asked our English experts for English phone conversation…

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