Ambiguities in Languages or: Find Waldo

A meadow and a horse

Equus ferus caballus

Did you now that the german word for a white horse is Schimmel? This word Schimmel is also the word for the english noun mould. Furthermore the combination weißer Schimmel gets commonly used as an example for a pleonasm because the verbatim translation would be white white horse. That is not correct, there are many types of horses which get called Schimmel. For example Grauschimmel, (grey horse) Apfelschimmel (dapple grey horse) and many more* for which I can’t find an english translation but Blauschimmel (verbatim: either blue white horse or blue mould) is also a sort of cheese (blue-veined cheese).

The horse in the picture at top seems to be on a diet: it wears a kind of muzzle with holes for the nostrils but none for the mouth. And as stupid as horses are it tries to graze despite the fact that it wears this thing for about half a year at least.

*Well, actually, these—the many more—are called stichelhaarige Pferde (grey-ticked Horses) or Dauerschimmel (permanent white horses), because they stay so their whole life. A real white horse starts dark, sometimes even black.


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