ШнОбель-giant nose, schnoz.
To end this week’s theme of words for body parts I now share with you one of my favorite words ever.
I loved the word schnaz in English. It gave me such delight to say it. Of course I tried to say it sparingly and/or only about my own honker. I just loved the sound of this word. The ‘sh’ plus ‘n’ it just sounded as grand and awkward as the thing it describes looks.
So you can imagine my joy when I discovered the Russian word шнобель. AAAAHHHHH it’s so PERFECT!!!! It’s even more awkward and effective than the English equivalent!!!
The word шнобель comes from Yiddish where it means ‘beak’, which is also the same origin of the English word ‘schnoz’.
A phrase you might hear using this word is: Не суй шнобель в чужие дела “Don’t stick your nose into others’ business”
The spoof on the Nobel Prize (awards given for trivial discoveries and accomplishments) is called the Ignobel prize in English. Welll, in Russian they’ve cleverly called them the “Шнобелевские премии”. Here’s an example of one such Шнобель award given this year:
“Шнобеля получили и сотрудники Университета Калифорнии, искавшие причины расплескивания чашки кофе при ходьбе.”
“Staff at University of California received a Schnobel for researching the reasons why coffee splashes out of the cup while a person is walking”.
See what I mean, the word just sounds perfectly for what it describes! I wish I could have been the person that announced “And now, the Schnobel goes to…” Because I just love the way it feels rolling off my tongue. Maybe I need to learn Yiddish.