Words excavations. Weihnachen meaning

Last Updated on September 16, 2022

Where does this word with such a difficult spelling come from?

In fact, his story is quite simple:

weihen (consecrate) + Nacht

It turns out Weihnachten – “consecrated nights”

Weihen is mainly used in a religious sense

die Kirche wurde im Jahre 1140 geweiht
jemanden zum Bischof weihen

but also figuratively (high style) – “to sacrifice, to dedicate (your life)”

er hat sein Leben Gott (der Kunst, dem Dienst an seinen Mitmenschen) geweiht


From the non-ecclesiastical derivatives of weihen is the most popular

einweihen:

– (from the meaning “to consecrate”) to inaugurate, solemnly open, mainly buildings

Die neue Bibliothek wird eingeweiht

– (from the meaning “to initiate, to let into your narrow (initially religious) circle”, that is, to reveal your secrets) to initiate:

in your plans
into secrets
circumstances of the case and so on

in seine Pläne einweihen
jemanden in die Geheimnisse einweihen

Other topics about words, synonyms and idioms in German – # vocabulary

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