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Landser Lingo
Translation by Bradley R. Hubbard


This is an excellent list of original Wehrmacht slang terms that are not often found in publications.  They are organized as follows: -German Phrase:  “literal translation”; actual meaning .  The original text can be found at:

http://www.lexikon-der-wehrmacht.de/Soldat/Landserausdruecke-R.htm.

As in every army there were slang expressions used in the colloquial language of the Soldiers of the Wehrmacht.  These expressions are and were difficult for outsiders to understand.

Aal:  “eel”; torpedo
Alter:  “elder”; superiors, usually the company commander
Alter Mann
:  “old man”; with the Afrikakorps used for Italian meat-products (Fleischkonserven)
Anschiß:  “shit on”; criticism from superiors
aussteigen:  “to step out”; euphamism for leaving a destroyed ship, plane, or tank
a.v.:  proper abbreviation for Arbeitsverwendungsfähig which means “one who is able to be used for work” but disqualified from combat duty (k.v.).  Used here as a pun for ausgezeichnete Verbindungen which means “excellent connections”

Bauchbinde:  “gut bind”; belt
Beutegermane:  “Booty-Teuton” foreign volunteer, also used for the Volksdeutsche (perhaps inferring that they were collaborating exclusively for the benefits)
Blechhut“sheet metal hat”; helmet
Blechkrawatte:  “sheet metal necktie”; the Knight’s Cross

Donnerbalken:  “thunderbeam”; latrine 

Eiserne Kuh:  “iron cow”; canned milk
Emil:  the German name “Emil”; a pilot

Fahrkarte:  “a ticket”; a miss, a shot that “travelled” into the distance
Feldküchensturmabzeichen:  “field kitchen assault badge”; the War Merit Cross

Fernkampfmedaille:  “long distance fighting medal”; the War Merit Cross (suggesting the holders were far from the actual fighting when they earned it)
Feuerpause:  official command/term for “cease fire”; a cigarette break
Fliegerbier:  “pilot beer “; lemonade
Franz: the German name “Franz”; an observer in a plane
Fußlappenindianer:  “Footwrap Indian”; Infantryman

Gebetsbuch:  “prayer book”; a Hauptfeldwebel’s notebook
Gefrierfleischorden:  “order of the frozen meat”; the East Front Medal
Gulaschkanone:  “goulash cannon”; field kitchen

Halseisen:  “neck iron” the Knight’s Cross
Halsschm
erzen:  “neck ache”;  had by someone who wants to earn the Knight’s Cross
Heimatschuß:  “homeland shot”; a light wound that would send a Soldier home
Heldenkeller:  “Hero cellar”; an air raid bunker
Heldenklau:  “Hero thief”; an officer who collects stragglers for redeployment
Himmelfahrtskommando:  roughly, a “Ride to heaven command”; a deployment with little chance of survival
Himmelsabwehrkanone:  roughly, an “Anti-heaven cannon”; an onboard physician in the Kreigsmarine
hinrotzen:  literally, “to sniff back one’s snot”; get into hasty cover
Hitlersäge:  “Hitler saw”; an MG42
HJ-Spätlese:  “a late/vintage Hitler Jugend”; the Volkssturm
Hoffnungsbalken:  “Hope bars”; the tress on an officer candidate’s shoulder boards
Horst Wessel Suppe:  “Horst Wessel Soup”; Meat and other good things that “marschieren im Geiste mit”/ “march along with in spirit” (in other words, good things that should be in the soup and aren’t. but are there in spirit.  A huge pun on the famous Horst Wessel Lied)
Hühneralarm “Hen alarm”; a late alarm (coming from the expression "erst das Ei, dann das Gackern"/ “first the egg, then the cackle”)
Hundemarke:  “dog tag”; the German identity disc
Hurratüte:  “a Hurrah! bag”; helmet

Intelligenzstreifen:  “intelligence stripes”; stripes on the trousers of the general staff
Itaka:  short for “Italienischer Kamerad”; Italian Comerade

Kantinenorden:  “Order of the Cafeteria”; the War Merit Cross
Karo einfach:  “Easy Diamonds”, a card-game reference; stale bread
Karussell:  “Carousel”, “Roundabout”; air combat where the opponents circle around each other
Kattun:  “cotton” or “denim”; to receive heavy fire
Kettenhund: “chain dog”; a Feldgendarm
Kiste:  “crate”; a plane
Knarre:  “Rattle”; rifle
Koffer:  “suitcase”; a heavy grenade
Kolbenringe-  “piston rings”; the double litzen on the arm of a Hauptfeldwebel
Kriegverlägerungskreuz:  “War Displacement Cross”; War Merit Cross (in other words, one who was displaced  or removed from the war)
Krüppelgarde:  “crippled gard”; Volkssturm
Küchenbulle:  “kitchen cop”; a cook
Kurbelei:  Luftkampf
k.v.:  proper abbreviation for kriegsverwendungsfähig meaning “fit for use in war”, used here as a pun for keine Verbindungen “no connections”,  kann verrecken “can croak(die)”,  or krepiert vielleicht “to death perhaps”
k.v.H.:  proper abbreviation for kriegsverwendungsfähig Heimat meaning “fit for use in war at home", used here as a pun for kann vorzüglich humpeln “can convincingly hobble”

Lametta:  “tinsel”; medals and tresse
langmachen:  “to make long”; take cover, lay down
Latrinenparole:  “latrine passwords”; gossip
Leithammel:  “bellwether” (some kind of ram);an Unteroffizier
Lysol:  (I think this is the brand of disinfectant); a sharp schnapps drank by occupation troops in France

Makkaroni:  “macaroni”; an Italian
Maskenball:  “masquerade”; popular harassment for instructors who constantly change into different uniforms
Mündungsschoner:  “muzzle cap”; a bad soldier

NS-Röhre:  “National Socialist tube”; a U-Boat

Oberschnäpser:  “Oversnapper”(?); an Obergefreiter

Panzer-Anklopf-Gerät:  “Panzer knocking device” (as in knock at a door); term for the 37mm Pak
Papieroffizier:  “paper officer”; someone in a propaganda company
Papiersoldat:  “paper soldier”; someone in a clerical unit
Pappkamerad:  “cardboard comrade”; a human cutout for target practice
Parteihut:  “party hat”; helmet
Partisanen:  “partisans”; lice
pumpen:  “pumps”; German exercise called Kneibeugen, often used for disclipine

Querschläger:  “ricochet”; an unpopular soldier

Rabatz: “to kick up a fuss” used for many unpleasant situations, great disorder, violent enemy fire
Ratschbumm:  (phonetic sound?); a Soviet direct fire gun where the report is heard as the shot hits
Reichsheini:  "slang nickname for “Reichsführer der SS Heinrich Himmler”
robben:  “crawl”; slang for low crawling
Rückgrat der Armee:  “Backbone of the Army”; and Obergefreiter, also the experienced Landser

Sandlatscher:  “sans traipser”; an infantrymen (Afrika Korps?)
Schleifer:  “grinder”; a brutal training officer, with tankers it also meant a Panzer in need of repair
Schmalspuroffizier:  “narrow gauge officer”; the Sonderführer ranks that wore narrow shoulder boards
Schlumpfschütze:  “smurf soldier”; a bad soldier
Schütze Arsch:  “soldier ass”; the “last” and worst soldier
Spargel:  “asparagus”; the periscope on a U-boat
Spiegelei:  “fried egg”; the German Cross in Gold
Spund:  “bung”; a young soldier or recruit
Stalintorte:  “Stalin cake”; stale bread
stiften gehen:  “to move it”; to flee

Tante Ju:  “Aunt Ju” the outdated but still-used transport plane Ju 52
Taschenflak:  “pocket Flak”; a pistol
Tiefflieger:  "strafer", an idiot

Untergefreiter:  “Under Gefreiter” (a non-existent German military rank); a civilian

V3:  (the last German “miracle weapon” after the V1 and V2 rockets); derogatory for Volkssturm
verheizen:  “to burn”; to senselessly sacrifice soldiers

Wanzenhammer:  “bug hammer”; a pipe (also used to smack bugs with apparently)
Wehrbeitrag:  “war contribution”; to conceive a child during leave
Wolkenquirl
:  “cloud whisk”; a helicopter

Zielwasser:  “prize water”; schnapps
Zigarettenbüchse:  “cigarette tin”; the gas mask canister, which was usually used for other things
Zwölfender:  “Twelver”; a career soldier whose term is 12 years, especially used for a Stabsfeldwebel

  
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