Anyone here speak German?

If so, could you tell me what Selig sind die Todten die in dem Herrn Sterben says when translated into English?

I’d appreciate it greatly. I found the phrase on the tombstone of my great great grandfather, and it’s bugging me.

Blessed are the dead, which die in the Lord (Revelation 14.13).

Thank you. :slight_smile:

I was happy to help.

You missed a word (one in English, but 3 in German):

Auf Deutsch: Selig sind die Toten, die in dem Herrn sterben von nun an.

In English: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord henceforth.

Yes but the Cap’n should know what’s on his great great grandfather’s tombstone.

That’s a switch. Often, phrases that are several words in English can be said in one word in German, no?

I speak a little German and have found that it can work either way.

Tidbit: “von nun an” is literally “from now on.”


I’ve seen a number of German tombstones (in the US) that use the quote as given (without the von nun an). It is normally in German Bible translations, in case anyone was wondering.

The original Greek is one word, aparti (derived from apo, [away] “from”, and arti, “now”). It’s not related to English “apart”.

Whydoyousaythat? :slight_smile:

*“Selig” *means “blessed”? Take that, Barry Bonds!


While we’re here, is the surname Zelig simply a (Yiddish?) version of Selig, or does it have a completely different meaning?

According to this authoritative cite, yes.

And don’t forget Woody Allen.

My dad spoke a little German. When he was exasperated he would yell, “I do not have a hat on my head” in German. It sounded like some horrible/cruel/naziesque phrase, “Ich habe nicht einen Hut auf meinem Kopf!” unless you knew what it meant.

Lots of German sounds like that. When my German-speaking grossmutti was angry, I knew it.


By the way, for future reference, check out Google Translate.


The exact phrasing and spelling are from Luther’s bible translation and a bit archaic. E.g. the software doesn’t recognize “Todten” because that would spelled “Toten” today.