The use of English in European Union documents has got backs up in the Bundestag, the German parliament.
Now a parliamentary body has ruled that German MPs have a constitutional right to have the documents translated into German, as part of an ongoing campaign to “promote and safeguard the German language”.
The ruling means Angela Merkel’s government will have to persuade Brussels of the merits of German, or translate the documents itself.
It’s rare these days for Germans to take such a stand on behalf of the language of Goethe against the incursions of English.
Although Helmut Kohl, the former Chancellor, made a largely unsuccessful push for German to be used more in international diplomacy in the early 1990s, today most Germans are remarkably relaxed about the growing use of English.