Word of the Week: Altweibersommer | Culture | Arts, music and lifestyle reporting from Germany | DW | 14.09.2016

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Culture

Word of the Week: Altweibersommer

Enjoying the warm days of late summer? In German, they're full of spider webs, according to this Word of the Week.

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Warm days in September that make the summer seem long and ease the transition into the chill of winter - that's what North Americans would call an Indian summer.

In Germany, it's an "Altweibersommer." At first glance, the term literally seems to mean "old hag summer," which conjures up images of spooky Halloween witches, but October 31 is a bit late even for an Indian summer.

However, "weiber" is more likely derived from the word "weben" (to weave) or "Spinnweben" (web-spinning spiders), which happen to be particularly prevalent in the fifth season - that is, those few lovely days between summer and fall.

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