German (Conversation)


Where and when

We meet in the afternoon every Friday in the Congregational Church.

Contact details

Sylvia Mountford 01858 465561


Sampler by Sylvia's Uncle Alexis

German Conversation – May

POW who stitched up Hitler. My uncle Alexis, a Major in the royal Army Ordnance Corps, was held captive in four different POW camps in Germany between 1941 and 1945. He began sewing six months into his time at Dossel-Warbung, using threads pulled from the jumper of a fellow inmate, a Cretan army General.  His […]

VW Beetle

German Conversation – April

As a former Beetle owner I was sad to learn that VW will end production of the highly recognisable car this year.The announcement marks the end of seven decades of success. The name Volkswagen-meaning People’s Car-was supposed to make Germans buy in to Hitler’s grand designs for the Fatherland and the then new Autobahns. None […]

German Conversation – January 2019

Humans use blinking as a subtle way to control conversations! Rapid blinks can encourage others to speak more,while slower ones can discourage speaking. They should be considered as conversational clues,a bit like nodding. Blinks have a clear physiological function,keeping the eyes moist and clear,but we do about 13,500 a day,many more than needed for this […]

German Conversation – November

Fed up with the cold?Feeling your age?Time passing too quickly? It’s rather different on PDS 70b,the newest planet in the universe. Experts at the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy believe its discovery will give them a world of information and help to unlock the secrets of Earth’s origins and the evolution of our solar system. […]

German Conversation – October

Just an interesting fact this time. Alexander von Humboldt’s birthday was on !4th September. The German polymath[1769-1859],who coined the term ‘the cosmos’,has been described as ‘a sort of 19th century David Attenborough’. He has more places and creatures named after him than anyone else! They include rivers,towns,mountains,a glacier,an ocean current,penguins,monkeys,an orchid,a squid and even a […]

German Conversation – September

We have continued to meet during August with the usual varied subjects of conversation. Recently we read about a plan to make a public bathing pool in the River Spree in Berlin; this involved words like ecological cleaning, feasibility and sustainable development.  More bizarrely   one member raised a problem which could be caused by a […]

German conversation – August

Holiday season again for many but few of us would be excited at the prospect of an aircraft meal nowadays;those hard rolls,curry with unidentifiable meat and claggy puddings in plastic pots.But in Germany an on-line supermarket is convinced there is a market for them and has joined forces with Lufthansa to start home deliveries.The best […]

German Conversation – July

Marmite was invented after a 19th century German scientist discovered that brewers’ yeast could be concentrated and eaten [no I don’t know how or why he did!]. It is rich in vitamin B and was issued to British soldiers during the First World War to stave off beriberi.  A special jar produced for the Queen’s […]


German Conversation

At this time of year I often talk about my Schrebergarten. After the death of a Doktor Schreber a park in Leipzig was named in his honour; around the edges were small gardens allocated to families with children so they could enjoy fresh air and learn to grow things. A German company now plans to […]

German Conversation – March

It’s almost Spring! And according to Tennyson “In the Spring a young man’s fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love”. Indeed last Spring one of our group found an engagement notice which proved that had happened to a Londoner, soberly named Edward Page.More exotic was his beloved’s name-Praxedis.His future in-laws were more complicated;Balthasar,Freiherr von Schnurbein,of […]