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der Quatsch

Der Quatsch is a really common colloquial German word for nonsense. Or bollocks, if you’re very British.

  • Du redest Quatsch.
  • You’re talking nonsense.
  • So einen Quatsch habe ich lange nicht mehr gehört.
  • I’ve not hear such nonsense in a long time.

It’s not very strong and can even sound a little endearing depending on context.
And it’s very commonly used to express an idea of “Oh, don’t worry about it.”

  • “Kannst du mein Bier bezahlen? Ich habe kein Geld dabei, ich geb dir das morgen zurück.”
    Ach Quatsch, ich lad’ dich ein.”
  • “Can you pay for my beer? I don’t have any money with me, I’ll pay you back tomorrow.”
    Ah, come on, nonsense, it’s on me.”

Oh and besides the noun, there’s also the verb quatschen and that’s a colloquial option for to chat.

  • Ich habe Maria am Bahnhof getroffen und wir haben kurz gequatscht.
  • I met Maria at the station and we chatted/talked for a bit.

The origin of these two words is likely an onomatopoeia, an imitation of a wet sound. How it moved to what it is today is not clear, but maybe, just maybe, it’s the sound of a facepalm.

By the way… if you need a strong option, for real, aggrevatingly nonsensical nonsense, der Schwachsinn is probably the better choice.