Word of the Day – “locken”

Hello everyone,

and welcome to our German Word of the Day. This time, with a quick look at the meaning of



It looks an awful lot like to lock. But that doesn’t mean that they’re related. I for instance look an awful lot like Chris Hemsworth, and yet we’re not related either. We’re just both very, very attractive – a walking temptation.
And that’s actually kind of what locken is all about. And not only the verb locken. The noun Locken can be attractive, too, if you like curls. Oh and let’s not forget about locker, which is also pretty attractive.
So clearly something to talk about, so let’s jump right in and unlock some new words :)

Let’s start with the verb locken. When you look in a dictionary, you can find translations like luring, enticing, attracting or wooing but the core idea is actually pretty clear for a native speaker. Locken is about “actively making someone want to come to you”. To give you a visual image… think of this “come here” motion you can make with your index finger combined with a salacious look. That’s a really good example of locken.

Now, looking at the second example, it makes perfect sense that locken is probably a distant relative of lügen (to lie). And it definitely does have a slightly manipulative overtone. But it doesn’t always imply something “false”. Like… the first example DOESN’T imply that the websites are sketchy in any way.
And the prefix version anlocken is a pretty neutral to attract, mostly in context of the animal kingdom.

And then, there are verlockend and die Verlockung which mean tempting and temptation and which are generally pretty positive sounding. The verb they’re based on, verlocken, has fallen out of use for the most part, but those two words are fairly common, especially in marketing.

Cool, so that’s the verb locken.
Now let’s talk about the noun Locken, which is the German word for curls. The singular is die Locke (one curl of hair) but the plural is much more common.

Now, from a boring, scientific point of view, the origin of the curly-Locken is the super ancient Indo-European root *leug, which was about bending, so it’s not related to the verb locken. But from a less uptight “Uh, everything has to be accurate all the time”, more fun point of view, the reason why Locken are called Locken is because they anlocken potential mates.  I mean… already the old Greeks knew about the allure of Locken.

Man, I wish I had such a curly beard. Well, actually I wish I could grow a proper beard to begin with.
Anyway, now that we know the verb locken and the noun Locken, the last one missing is the adjective locker.
Looks an awful lot like the English locker but once again, that is totally misleading. Actually, German locker is kind of the opposite of what you want from a lock because it means…. loose. Not completely fixed.

And even more useful than that is the metaphorical use as chill, relaxed or in some contexts informal. 

Of course there are also some related words but they’re pretty easy to guess in context, I think.

Oh and we also need to mention that locker can be used in sense of easily. I don’t know, if that’s known all over Germany, but I use it pretty often.

And that’s it for today.
This was our look at locken, Locken and locker and even though the three words are not related when we look at them from a science point of view, they are related because we want them to be. That’s how the law of attraction works. #spiritual:100
Oh and speaking of attraction… here’s one last example that combines all the words.

As usual, my attractive assistant has prepared a little quiz for you, so you can check how much you remember.
And of course, if you have any questions or suggestions just leave me a comment.
I hope you liked it and see you next time.



Test yourself on locken.

How much do you remember of the article :)

1 / 9

Who looks like Emanuel? (multiple answers)

2 / 9

What does locken mean?

3 / 9

The verb anlocken usually translates to which of the following?

4 / 9

What does "der Verlockung widerstehen" mean?

5 / 9

What do you have if you have a "lockerer Zahn"?

6 / 9

What does "Ich habe Locken" mean?

7 / 9

If you are "unlocker" that means ... 

8 / 9

"Rapunzels Haare sind locker 3 Meter lang." means that... ?

9 / 9

What does "Das schaff ich locker" translates to?

Your score is

The average score is 81%

How did you like the quiz?


** vocab **

locken – lure, bait, make come 
anlocken – attract (mostly animal kingdom)

verlockend – tempting
die Verlockung – the temptation (positive sounding)

die Locke(n) – the curl(s)
lockig – curly
der Lockenwickler – the curler (for hair)

locker – loose, also: easily
(sich) lockern – loosen (oneself)

auflockern – loosen up (mostly figurative)
die Auflockerung – the cheer up

for members :)

Leave a Reply

newest oldest
Notify of

Good morning!

I think there’s only one typo (“diplomat meeting”, either “diplomatic meeting” or “diplomats’ meeting”; picky stuff, I know!)
But your phrase “salt-less rice waffle” sounds a bit foreign, salt-free would be more appropriate. Also, “fixated” doesn’t mean fixed, but obsessed, so it’s not a good word for the door handle!

Cool to know that the idiom “The guy has a screw loose” translates literally to German!

Now a question of my own, abaout locks… or hair anyway:
What is right in German, Haar or Haare? For instance “Ich habe blondes Haar” or “Ich habe blonde Haare” ?

And please tell me you’re not eliminating the “get PDF” option from your articles; this “csv”, “flashcard app”, “memrise” talk is all Greek to me…

Bis bald!


I would say “unsalted rice cake”. Ya know, Styrofoam.

Ahmad Mazaheri
Ahmad Mazaheri

Jetzt verstehe ich warum man sagt LOCKVOGEL für ein decoy . Das macht Sinn mit verb Locken !
Ausgeschnet wie immer . Vielen Dank.


You seem concerned about that door handle…


Meiner bescheidenen Meinung nach sind Einhörner nur Vegetarier. Der Wanderer muss aus anderen Gründen gelockt worden sein!

Ahmad Mazaheri
Ahmad Mazaheri

Was sind diese Gründe ihren Meinung nach ? Es siehst ein bischon wilkürlich diese Verhältnisse aus ,oder??

Rohrkrepierer ‐ KOOK & HECKLER
Rohrkrepierer ‐ KOOK & HECKLER

”Der Wanderer” keusch und Jungfern rein,
muß auf jeden Fall ein Fräulein sein!

Das Einhorn -ein Frauenheld – ein Männerfeind.
Was normalerweise hinten ist,
und halb versteckt,
trägt er es vorn’
stolz herausgestreckt!
Sein Konstrukt ist gar nicht übel,
versorgt Blut ausreichend,
füf Kopf und Dübel!

Die Persil weiße Wahrheit
ZDF 9 Min.



I told him this before. He does not understand that this is a prey animal, not a predator. The horn is only for protection, but he continues.

Hugh Warren
Hugh Warren

There are lots of people in the anglophone world ‘who have a screw loose’ too.

Ahmad Mazaheri
Ahmad Mazaheri

Man kan nicht besser sagen .


dies ist locker die meister lockere quiz von der lockere mann, aber?


Emanuels Locken locken uns locker zur deutschen Grammatik.


I’ve been using this site for some time and finally I’m a member thanks to kind people who sponsored others. This place and a few children books a kind old German tourist gave me out of nowhere are my favorite sources for study :) Many thanks to you random stranger!

Rohrkrepierer ‐ KOOK & HECKLER
Rohrkrepierer ‐ KOOK & HECKLER

Thema : “Loose curls lure Thomas OF the sofa”.


Loose curls -poor Thomas von Sofa “off” did “rip”! (RIPPED – OFF!)

Any resemblance to real persons actual events, or a current,actively, written language – ist hier höchst unwahrscheinlich!

rip – to tear away or apart – to tear off
“rip-off” – a swindle – a quick, petty theft.
Sepp = Joe — German nickname for Josef
Junkers -old northeast area German snooty upper crust, often having ‘von’… surnames
Redondo Beach – California coastal town
couch surfing – to stay short periods in crash pads with other young friends
crashed out (aus) – asleep
Opa – grandfather Oma – grandmother
Traubensaft – slang for grape juice wine
fett – fat and slang for very drunk
“curl” – surfer term for the form of a giant ocean beach wave
”woodie” here meaning – old American kombi station wagen car with wooden exterior door trim. (in song lyrics -link ganz unten am Ende)


Cowabunga! –

an expression of surprise or amazement, often followed by “dude”

Surfer Freiherr Josef Thomas von Sofa,
hat Einhorn ähnlich, lockige Zopfe,
schaut haar genau so aus,
wie alte Fotos von Opa.

Der Sepp seine-Haar Farbe – blond-ocker.
faulenzt gern auf der Couch,- gelassen.
ein Dude sehr lässig und locker,
Abstammung aus Preussen,
Sein Groß Opa ein Junker!
Sepp wohnt in Redondo,
und heißt nun Joe surfer!

Eines abends von Wellen total erledigt,
surft er und sauft er mit allen gleichzeitig
sozusagen damit Du es weißt
genau was hier das heißt :
1. die Couch Kissen surfen,
2. die Traubensaft feierlich saufen,
weil Sepp gerade seinen Welt Cup Surf Titel
erfolgreich verteidigt !

Die hippen Surfettes und Surfduden
kosten wenn möglich,
lieber Wein aus dem Süden..

Nach fließend Prossecco,
Magnum Flaschen Sieger Runde’
bei Herr von Sofa,- von Saft – aufgelockert,
die Zopfe und Zunge.
Aber statt “Kühebunga” !!
mit deutschem Akzent,
kam :
Verdammte Sch..! aus dem Munde!
I haff now no dollars! Me fails it my zents!
Leer waren Flaschen.
Leer war die Tasche,
und die lockeren Haare, und Herr Sepp von Sofa
die zwei gleichzeitig,
waren jetzt unangenehm fett!!

Das Unheil geht weiter,
für den armen Brettreiter!

Crashpad Türklinke war schon lange
locker kaputt,
hinein schleicht heimlich,
in Strand Bikini bekleidet, verlockender
Lockvogel Süss-anne Surfett’,
und von dem lieben Joe-Sepp von Sofa
crash’t auf der Couch aus,
waren schnell weg,
sein Sieger T-Shirt , Pokal und Hut.
und sogar ‘was noch schlimmer
sein Sieger Surfbrett!

Abgazz Werke und Brennschere Fabrik Clara Zetkin VEB

“Nieeemand in der DDR hat die Absicht ein Surfbreti zu klauen! ” – W. Ulbricht Generalsekretär des ZK der SED 1963



So how would you characterize the differences between anlocken, anziehen, and ködern?


my 3 cents-
primarily used in this ”sense”’

anlocken = to entice with a suggestive action or possible promise of a reward
to me this word has a mostly negative connotation. meaning -There is a ”catch” or a ”trick”
lurking behind a facade. a verlocken ”light” –

OR ?????????

anziehen = 1. to pull om, or to put on something especially clothing. 2. to attract in a neutral or positive, pleasing
more honest open way. Always used with gravity, magnets and magnetism. Anziehungskraft

ködern = to attract with bait or a Lockvogeltaktik



Thank you for singing me up to the blog for a student like me. I greatly appreciate your assistance and members involved.



Hey guys,

I’m new here. I just wanted to say that I’m so grateful that this truly amazing community has been generous enough as to allow people like me, who otherwise couldn’t be members, the opportunity to be here.


Rohrkrepierer ‐ KOOK & HECKLER
Rohrkrepierer ‐ KOOK & HECKLER


”ver” Teil 1.

Seid Ihr zwei noch dabei.??? Bonnie at Tarot Salve & Phil Troy ?

Sprach-Dok. Kannst Du diese Mail weiter leiten?
Wie alt ist diese Post?

So easy a Neander aus dem Thal hat es geschafft!

Wenn es hart auf hart kommt! – Zerplatzt! Between a rock and a hard place! Zerdrückt und Zerplatzt!

Abgasstufe Es-Zett


Hat „die Locken“ etwas mit dread locks zu tun ?


The loose curls lure Thomas OFF the sofa. “Thomas of the sofa” means Thomas belongs to or comes from the sofa – as in “knight of the round table”.

By the way, how come I got every question right in the quiz but only got 88%? Are you in an alternative arithmetical universe?


Maaan, these csv files are eine tolle Idee!!!


But they don’t work for Memrise.. or I’m stupid :)