A Dictionary in Pictures

As people grow and develop, so too does the language we use to express ourselves, words getting more specific to describe specific things, words expressing our values and priorities, words expressing feelings and ideas.

Jaiden Radoczy, Bear Hub Staff

We use words to tell people that we love them, to tell people how we love them, words like “soulmate” and “beloved,” all meant to let people know of their importance: to you, to the people around them, to the world. Every language has different words that they clutch close to their chest, words without direct translations anywhere else, and with every word and every phrase there is emotion and there is meaning. I looked for those words from language to language, finding words in French, Arabic, and Japanese, as well as a variety of other languages. Then I took ten snapshots to capture the emotions of those words, found in the gallery below. If you look at the caption for each of the images, you can see the words I tried to photograph and their definitions.

In taking these pictures with my friends and my family I learned why the Danes would need a word like hygge (and why the indigenous Nicaraguans would need a word like yuputka, but that’s a story for another time). Words are for love and words are for emotions, and if you need a word to express yourself in ways you can’t quite verbalize, maybe step outside the bounds of your own language and look somewhere else.