Why do I need to know this word?
Because it describes a core human emotion and often appears in news stories when important public figures pass away.
What does it mean?
die Trauer is the German word for “grief” and describes the deep emotional pain over a loss or misfortune.
It comes from the verb trauern which means “to grieve,” but be careful not to mix it up with the verb trauen which means “to trust”.
Language experts believe that the modern German word trauern can be traced all the way back to the Gothic language – an ancient East Germanic language which has been extinct since the 6th century.
It’s believed that the Gothic word driusan, which can be translated roughly as “to fall down” or “to become dull, powerless” became trüren in Middle High German and eventually trauern in modern German.
In German, Trauer is used to mean “grief,” “sadness” and the grieving process itself. You may already be familiar with the adjective traurig meaning “sad” and you’ll also hear it appearing in the word Trauertag – “a day of mourning” – especially at the moment.
Every year in November, Germany has a Volkstrauertag (literally “the people’s day of mourning”), the German version of remembrance Sunday, when people gather to remember the victims of the two world wars.
Use it like this:
Keiner sollte während der Trauer alleine sein
Nobody should be alone during their grieving period
Mit tiefer Trauer haben wir die Nachricht vom Tod Ihrer Majestät Königin Elizabeth II. erhalten
It is with deep sadness that we have received the news of the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II