hecheln

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German[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /ˈhɛçəln/
  • (file)

Etymology 1[edit]

An onomatopoeic word liable to alteration and variation. Formally iterative of obsolete hechen, heichen (to pant), a chiefly Central and Low German word; compare Middle Low German hīgen, heigen, hēgen (to pant), from or related with Proto-Germanic *hīgōną (whence Dutch hijgen, English hie). Another obsolete variant German hechzen is derived from or reinterpreted as the interjection hach! + the old suffix -zen (to say something). Further compare hauchen.

Middle High German hecheln, hacheln is attested in the sense “to copulate”, which might be derived from underlying “to pant”, though this is rather unlikely. The sense exists also in the above-mentioned Middle Low German hīgen and in this language it is probably due to influence by hīwen (“to marry, to copulate”, later “to rape”; see Dutch huwen, Luxembourgish geheien, German Heirat). Probably, however, Middle High German hecheln is the same verb as that in etymology 2 below, through a cross-linguistic tendency of using verbs denoting ungentle treatments in a sexual sense (and vice versa).

Verb[edit]

hecheln (third-person singular simple present hechelt, past tense hechelte, past participle gehechelt, auxiliary haben)

  1. to pant or breathe fast and loudly through one’s mouth (much like dogs do when hot or short of breath)

Etymology 2[edit]

From Middle High German hecheln, hacheln, derived from hechel, hachel, whence German Hechel (hackle). For the sexual sense compare etymology 1 above.

Verb[edit]

hecheln (third-person singular simple present hechelt, past tense hechelte, past participle gehechelt, auxiliary haben)

  1. to hackle
  2. (figuratively) to heckle; to slag off
  3. (archaic) to hit; to beat
  4. (obsolete) to copulate with; to fuck

Conjugation[edit]