Danish word of the day: Fråderen

Michael Barrett
Michael Barrett - [email protected]
Danish word of the day: Fråderen

Photo by Francesco Ungaro on Unsplash and Nicolas Raymond/FlickR

Today's word is a slang Danish expression that could have you licking your lips.


What is fråderen?

The verb at fråde gives rise to some strong images, meaning literally "to foam at the mouth". It's not an equivalent to "dribble", which is at savle, and unlike at savle, it only really has negative connotations.

You can savle in response to the smell of delicious food, for example, but if you fråder, you "secrete foamy spit in the mouth -- because of aggressiveness, having a fit etc.," according to the dictionary definition.

In fact, at fråde can also be used metaphorically to mean going into a rage, skipping entirely the step where you froth at the mouth in anger.

In contrast, fråderen means something very positive or enticing, and it's therefore important not to confuse the two, even though the latter word is derived from the former.

There are a few Danish slang words that are formed by shortening another word and adding the definite article -en on the end. These generally emerged in the 1990s when children shortened or changed the words, although fråderen is thought to come from a little later, around the early 2000s.

We've previously written about grineren and nederen, which are probably the most common slang words of this type, and elaborated a little on how the words were formed and shortened from their original, more formal guises.


Why do I need to know fråderen?

At fråde is a Danish verb you might not hear very often, while fråderen has probably given at a new lease of life by bringing it to the attention of a younger generation.

As alluded to above, fråderen is a positive adjective used to describe something that looks good, tastes good or generally seems very enticing. Presumably so much so that it makes you lick your lips in overdrive, causing the metaphorical foaming at the mouth.

Another way of using fråderen is to have fråderen på, literally (and clumsily translated to) "have a foaming at the mouth episode going on". This means to feel excessively hungry with a particular craving for sweets or tasty snacks. A more common Danish word with the same meaning as this is lækkersulten ("tasty-hungry").


Ej, har du popcorn med?! Kæft hvor fråderen, mand.

Oh wow, have you brought popcorn? My gosh, how enticing, man.

Vil du ikke købe de der doughnuts, når du går ned i Lidl? De er simpelthen så fråderen.

Would you mind buying those doughnuts they have when you go to Lidl? They really are quite delicious.


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