For all its history, the English language is lacking in certain areas. We don't have a word for that phenomenon when you think of an amazing comeback a few seconds too late (the French came up with that), for the feeling you get when you experience something especially romantic (we'd have to turn to Tagalog), or that punch to the gut when you realize you've just fallen out of love (leave it to the Russians to coin that one). (More on those below….)
For her book Lost in Translation, released in September, Ella Frances Sanders illustrated 50 of her favorite foreign words that don't have a direct English translation, everything from the feeling one gets right before making a declaration of love to the length of time it takes to eat a banana. Now, all of Sanders's quirky illustrations from the book have been republished as notecards, giving everyone who has trouble saying exactly what they mean a new approach to interpersonal communication. Pin a card on your wall, use one as a bookmark, or send one off to a special someone this holiday season.
Below are some of our favorite nearly untranslatable words, as illustrated by Ella Frances Sanders.