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zweifellos

(verb)

Meanings

1.
without a doubt
(in the sense of there not being doubt about something. NOT about you being free of doubt.)

Examples tap to show/hide

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Word of the Day - "los"

A thorough look at the meaning of "los", its various useful prefix verbs and the noun "das Los", and what a raffle token has to do with fate and parking lots.

Vocab:

los, lose, das Los, los sein, loslassen, losgehen,


The meaning of "der Zweifel"

A fun look at "Zweifel" and what the number two has to do with "doubt". Also, we'll learn about how to properly doubt something and how to despair in German :)

Vocab:

zweifel, zweifeln, zweifellos, bezweifeln, anzweifeln, verzweifeln


Word Family tap to show/hide

Root: *dwo-

The core idea of this root was:

two

And there are basically four big branches we can identify. The first one is duo, and here the sense of two is pretty obvious.

  • duet
  • dual
  • double
  • doubt (“on two sides)”
  • dubious (“two faced”)
  • duplicity (“two faced”)

The next branch is around the syllables: di-, dia-. In some words in this branch the idea of two is pretty clear. Others  are about a theme of through which is probably an extension of the idea of from one side to the other.

  • carbon dioxide (“carbon with two oxygen”)
  • diploma (originally “official paper folded twice”)
  • diabetes (“passing through”, referred to excessive peeing)
  • diarrhea (“flowing through”, referred to.. well… you know)
  • diagram (“marked/bordered by lines”)

The third branch is bi-.
Here, the theme of two is also very strong, but sometimes it’s fairly obscured.

  • binary
  • binocular (“two eyes”)
  • biscuit (“cooked twice”)
  • combine (“make two, put together”)
  • balance (originally “scale with two pans”)

Last but not least, we have the Germanic branch of two, twi-  and zw(e)i.
Besides the actual numbers, this branch has a quite a few words that are about coming from two sides.

  • two, zwei, twelve, zwölf, twenty, zwanzig
  • twilight (“double light”)
  • between (“by/within two”)
  • twine, twist (probably originally about “twisting two threads together for a rope”)
  • twig, Zweig (branch splitting up “two ways”)
  • Zweifel (“on two sides”)
  • zwicken (to pinch – “pinch between two”)
  • zwingen, Zwang (to force – “pinch between two”)

The connection of “Zweck” was an assumption in etymological sources for a while, but it’s not supported by newer research. Still, I decided to include it here.

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