re- [Danish]

Stefan Knoob stefanknoob at HOTMAIL.COM
Wed Aug 27 11:24:58 UTC 2003

German has "Wiedergänger", although that is quite archaic, I seem to
remember it from 19th century novels. Don't know about the Danish, but in
German it does not simply mean "ghost" but that specific kind of ghost of a
lost soul that comes to haunt the living.
I don't know how old and widespread it is, but it seems to me that the whole
concept is found in discourses about the supernatural across European
cultures, and was probably in fashion during the Romantic period's
preoccupation with the spooky. Would be interesting where it actually comes
from: although a spread from French literature to Danish/German seems
certainly more likely than the other way round, given the literature
dissemination patterns throughout the early modern period, it might actually
originate in another European language.


>From: Paul J Hopper <ph1u at ANDREW.CMU.EDU>
>Reply-To: Paul J Hopper <ph1u at ANDREW.CMU.EDU>
>Subject: Re: re- [Danish]
>Date: Mon, 25 Aug 2003 11:47:15 -0400
>I've often wondered if the "ghost" meaning of Danish genganger is a calque
>on the French revenant. Just curious.

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