Wicht

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See also: wicht

German[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /vɪçt/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɪçt

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle High German wicht, from Old High German wiht (creature, thing), from Proto-Germanic *wihtiz (essence, object), from Proto-Indo-European *wekti- (cause, sake, thing). Cognate with Dutch wicht, English wight, Swedish vätte, and Icelandic vættur.

Noun[edit]

Wicht m, n (genitive Wichts or Wichtes, plural Wichte or Wichter, diminutive Wichtchen n or Wichtlein n)

  1. a small creature, particularly a goblin, sprite, leprechaun, kobold
    • 2010, Elke Bräunling, Wichtelfantasie, Verlag Stephen Janetzko, →ISBN.
      Da fängt das Gras an zu wachsen und auf einmal ähnelt jeder Grashalm einem tanzenden Wicht.
      Then the grass starts to grow and suddenly every stalk of grass resembles a dancing sprite.
  2. (of a child, mildly derogatory) a cheeky one; a rascal
  3. (of an adult, more derogatory) one who is mean but unimportant
Usage notes[edit]
  • In contemporary German, Wicht is masculine with a plural Wichte. The neuter gender is archaic. So is the plural Wichter as far as the simplex is concerned, but it is still sometimes seen in the compound Bösewicht. Compare also etymology 2 below.
Declension[edit]
Synonyms[edit]
Related terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

The same word as above, but in this use chiefly from Middle Low German wicht, from Old Saxon wiht.

Noun[edit]

Wicht n (genitive Wichtes or Wichts, plural Wichter)

  1. (archaic, dialectal, northern and western Germany, not pejorative) a child or young person, chiefly and in some regions exclusively: a girl
    • 1934, Josef Winkler, Der alte Fritz: ein niederdeutscher Volksmythus, p. 335:
      Als das Holz mächtig flammte und die Wichter und Jungs herumsprangen und sangen, auf einmal rief einer: »De olle Fritz! De olle Fritz mit de lange Nierse!«
      When the wood was burning with mighty flames and the girls and boys were jumping around, singing—all of a sudden someone yelled [in Low German]: “Old Fritz! Old Fritz with the long nose!”
Declension[edit]