• Germany's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Ten inventions you didn't know were German

The Local · 9 Apr 2014, 14:13

Published: 09 Apr 2014 14:13 GMT+02:00

From the coffee filter to the popular board game Settlers of Catan, so many modern conveniences that we could scarcely do without were first developed by Germans.

The same goes for worldwide traditions like the Easter Bunny, which originates from religious beliefs of ancient Germanic tribes.

The list is not without controversy, with other countries staking claim to the accordion, but we did leave out some particularly disputed discoveries.

German researcher Heinrich Göbel worked on the incandescent light bulb years before Thomas Edison, though a Frenchman may have developed one even earlier.

And scholars still disagree about whether Gottfried Leibniz pipped his arch-enemy Isaac Newton in the gripping battle to discover the infinitesimal calculus.

Story continues below…

CLICK HERE to view our list of great German inventions

For more news from Germany, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
German footballer killed day after club's relegation
Feierabend had played for Hanover 96's youth team in a game against RB Leipzig on Saturday. Photo: DPA

Having been relegated from the Bundesliga the day before, Hanover 96 were on Sunday mourning their midfielder Niklas Feierabend after the 19-year-old was killed in a car crash.

 Germany's right-wing AfD adopts anti-Islam manifesto
Co-leader Jörg Meuthen said the AfD stood for a "modern conservatism" and a "healthy patriotism". Photo: DPA

Germany's right-wing populist AfD Sunday adopted an anti-Islam policy in a manifesto that also demands curbs to immigration, as a poll showed it is now the country's third strongest party.

Germany's Schäuble attacks bonuses for crisis-hit VW

"It shows that something is not right," he said.

Germany 'to host fresh Ukraine talks'
Steinmeier warned that with the truce still proving fragile there was no time to be lost in seeking a diplomatic solution. Photo: DPA

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier Saturday said he had invited his Russian, Ukrainian and French counterparts to talks in Berlin on May 11 intended to smooth differences between Moscow and Kiev.

Berlin cracks down on Airbnb rentals to cool market
The Airbnb trend has also impacted the local hotel industry. Photo: DPA

German capital wants to keep housing affordable.

German justice to tackle Syrian war crimes
A Jordanian soldier carries a Syrian refugee child. Photo: DPA

On Tuesday Germany will start its first war crimes trial over atrocities in Syria, as a mass refugee influx brings not only witnesses and victims but also suspects into the country.

400 arrests outside German far-right AfD party congress
"No rights for Nazi propaganda," cried one group of demonstrators. Photo: DPA

Clashes broke out between party members and left-wing protestors.

German public sector workers dispute settled
President of the Verdi union, Frank Bsirske (2nd from left) and Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere (2nd from right) shake hands after the breakthrough. Photo: DPA

Threat of national disruptions lifted.

German women battle for 'no means no' in rape law
A woman carries a sign reading "no means no" at a demonstration in 2011. File photo: DPA

Germany has long lagged behind other advanced nations when it comes to laws on rape. As parliament discusses a new law, women are using increased public attention to the problem to demand real change.

Cologne mayor tells court of being stabbed in neck
Henriette Reker. Photo: DPA

Cologne Mayor Henriette Reker, described in court on Friday how she was attacked during campaigning last autumn and almost lost her life.

Sponsored Article
What's the best way for expats to transfer money abroad?
Culture
6 weird and wonderful ways Germans celebrate May 1st
Sponsored Article
Becoming an expat: where to start
Gallery
Feast your eyes on Germany in springtime bloom
National
4/20: Five things to know about weed in Germany
Sponsored Article
How to launch your international career
Berlin
Police break up hipster swarm at vegan restaurant opening
Politics
Merkel allows Erdogan case against German satirist to go ahead
Travel
7 of Germany's most jaw-dropping national parks
Hamburg
Gay penguins move to Hamburg to settle down
Business & Money
See-through €5 coin has collectors lining up
Health
Vegan hemp powder recalled over fear toddlers getting high
International
6 ways Mexico and Germany are secretly the best of friends
Munich
Drunk man falls onto tracks, 3 trains pass before anyone notices
Culture
The 7 most German things that happened at the 'German Grammys'
National
Could Germany ban diesel cars from city centres?
Travel
Eight things you never knew about the German Autobahn
Society
Police force naked driver to trek to brothel on foot
National
Bavarian town finally strips Hitler of honorary citizenship
Society
Brandenburg faces wrath of Flying Spaghetti Monster
International
German retiree 'fed to dog' by Russian wife in Mallorca
National
Ordinary Germans toast love online in face of Brussels bombings
National
Germany calls for "strength in unity" after Brussels bombings
7,826
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd