Hintertupfingen - a small place far, far away, in the middle of nowhere In German we have a couple of words for (often small) places far off the civilization, some of the place names are invented and others have a real origin.

Invented place names

Small, far away village: Hintertupfingen (https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hintertupfingen), Kleinkleckersdorf, Kleinsiehstenich.

If you can't recall the name of a place you can call it Dingenskirchen

Real place names

<em>small, distant place</em>

Posemuckel: the villages Podmokle Wielkie and Podmokle Małe in Poland. Posemuckel is used like Hintertupfingen.

<em>in the middle of nowhere</em>

Walachei: Wallachia in Romania

Pampa: grassland in South America

<em>far away, possibly not even existing place:</em>

Timbuktu: city in Mali

Timbuktu is not only in German regarded as a mythical place: "In the imagination of Europeans and North Americans, Timbuktu is a place that bears with it a sense of mystery: a 2006 survey of 150 young Britons found 34% did not believe the town existed, while the other 66% considered it "a mythical place". This sense has been acknowledged in literature describing African history and African-European relations. Timbuktu is also often considered a far away place, in popular western culture." (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timbuktu)  

Funnily, we also have an urban myth in Germany that the German city of Bielefeld is a hoax and doesn't exist but this is just a joke and everyone knows that Bielefeld actually exists: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bielefeld_conspiracy. Or does it really?

Do you know similar invented or real place names in your native tongue or target languages to describe places far away, in the middle of nowhere, the back of the beyond?

May 5, 2019 6:36 PM
Comments · 16

That's interesting that actually existing and not so small Polish cities are used in Poland to express the idea of a small and far away place.


Shangri-la reminded me of the Schlaraffenland (Cockaigne). Different concept but also an utopia.

And well, about Bielefeld. You might find this funny: https://www.nw.de/lokal/bielefeld/mitte/22041816_Gag-mit-Karte-Wie-der-Bielefeld-Witz-Deutschland-spaltet.html

May 5, 2019

That's no proof. The Banana Bar was just a set for you to make you believe that Bielefeld exists.

May 6, 2019
Wow, learnt a lot of fun words gor places in the middle of nowhere! Thanks for all the commrmts!


Try Gügel, Gugelberg and Guglberg in the German Wikipedia.

May 6, 2019
On a related topic, it seems to me there are some towns in Austria and Germany named “Gügel”. Actually, I think I met someone from Gügel (or Gügelberg?) Austria, a long time ago. I've just done a web-search to try and double-check the existence of the town (and the spelling), but it proved fruitless, giving no results other than for the search-engine “Google”. It’s a mystery.

May 6, 2019
Fischamend - gibt es wirklich.
Kuhschnappel - gibt es nur in den Romanen von Jean Paul. Seine Wortschoepfungen sind immer genial.
May 6, 2019
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