Swearing and Words of Aggression in German

Swearing In German

Swearing and Words of Aggression in German

The other day I went to watch Monty Python Live (mostly) in Zurich. The event was funny and all subtitled in German, which for the the majority of the people was not necessary for understanding as the Swiss that enjoy Monty Python all understand English well enough to get the jokes and there were a great many Expats at the event. However, as an Expat it was a potential German lesson, as the subtitles were well done giving a great insight into how German goes about expressing things like slang terminology for penis.

Das Penis-Lied

The right word at the right time

The purpose of this post is not to provide all the different words for human genitalia, but rather to give you some key German insults. When you live in any country, you’ll inevitably get to a point where you need to complain about people, want to insult them or need to defend yourself against someone else’s insults. It’s never pleasant, but knowing a few key phrases will help you with this. The last ten phrases should help you to de-escalate a situation. In no way do we condone violence, being rude or aggressive in any language. That said life happens and even if you don’t end up using this terminology, it might help you to understand it.

German Swear Words and Insults


der Penner (this literally means a “bum” or homeless person); some Germans will use the English word too.


das Arschloch


die Zicke (literally a “nanny goat”)


der Lutscher (literally means “sucker”)


der Waschlappen (literally means “dishrag”)

son of a bitch

die Arschmade (literally means “ass maggot”); der Hurensohn (really bad)


die Schlampe


die Hure


der Motherfucker (sounds like “muzza-fucka”)

piece of shit

der Scheisskerl (literally means “shit guy”)


die Drecksau (literally means “dirty pig”)

can’t stand (I can’t stand those two.)

nicht aushalten (Die Beiden kann ich nicht aushalten.)

What a complete asshole.

Was für ein Arschloch.

What a dumb-ass!

Voll der Depp!

to be full of shit (He’s so full of shit!)

Luft im Sack haben (Er hat nur Luft im Sack!)

to talk shit about (He’s always talking shit about us.)

nur Scheisse über etwas/jemanden reden (Er redet nur Scheisse über uns.)

That pisses me off!

Das pisst mich an!

That is really annoying!

Das ist voll nervig!

That bugs the hell out of me!

Das stört mich total!

That drives me crazy!

Das macht mich verrückt!

You’re really busting my balls!

Du gehst mir voll auf den Sack!

to lose it (I just lost it.)

abdrehen (Ich bin einfach abgedreht.)

to go postal (She’s going to go postal.)

durchdrehen (Sie wird durchdrehen.)

to flip out (I’m about to flip out.)

ausflippen (Ich flippe gleich aus.)

to lose your grip (Get a grip!)

abticken (Tick nicht ab!)

to be nuts (Are you fucking nuts?)

spinnen (Spinnst du oder was?)

totally mental (That guy’s totally mental!)

am Blitz geleckt haben (Der hat wohl am Blitz geleckt!)

The shit has hit the fan.

Nun ist die Kacke am Dampfen.

Got a problem?

Ist was?

What about it?

Na und?

What’s up with the shit?

Was soll der Scheiss?

Kiss my ass!

Leck mich am Arsch! (literally means “Lick my ass!)

Ok, playtime’s over!

Schluss mit lustig!

Piss off!

Verpiss dich!

Go fuck yourself!

Fick dich ins Knie!

Hey, jerk-off!

Na, du Wichser!

Shut your trap.

Halt die Klappe.

Shut the fuck up!

Halt’s Maul!

I don’t give a shit!

Ist mir doch scheissegal!

Take it easy, man.

Eh man, locker bleiben.

Just take a deep breath.

Einfach tief einatmen.

Stop it!

Schluss damit!

Enough with the “tough guy” act.

Sei doch nicht so macho, eh.

Violence is not the answer.

Gewalt ist keine Lösung.

Dude, keep your shit together.

Mensch, reiss dich zusammen.

This is really childish bullshit.

Das ist ja Kinderkacke.

Actually I’m a pacifist.

Eigentlich bin ich Pazifist.

Hey, cut that shit out.

Hey, hör auf mit dem Scheiss.

I’d rather not get involved.

Ich misch mich lieber nicht ein.

Fuck this, I’m calling the cops.

Scheiss drauf, ich hol’ die Bullen.

Caveat to this post and important numbers

Many language teachers and schools don’t teach swearing, though it is an integral part of most languages. As you can see German also has a variety of swear words, and often as I’ve written before they’ll use English ones. The warning again though is not to allow situations to escalate to a point where you would need to use these words to be aggressive or insulting to someone.

If you get into trouble or find that you do need to police here are the numbers you should have:

  • Polizei Schweiz: 117
  • Polizei Deutschland: 110
  • Polizei Österreich: 133

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