“A man who may act tough in front of his friends but can’t stand up for himself against his wife.”

The direct translation is a “slipper hero.” I guess, the Germans also know that the man might be the head of the household, but the woman sure is the neck that can make the head turn any whichever way she likes.

“Pantoffelheld”: A Comic Look at the Henpecked Husband

The German word “Pantoffelheld” might sound funny at first, but it actually has a pretty clear meaning when you break it down. Let’s take a look at its components:

  • Pantoffel (noun): This translates to “slipper” – the kind of comfy footwear you wear at home.
  • Held (noun): This means “hero” – someone brave and strong.

Put together, “Pantoffelheld” creates a comical image. It literally translates to “slipper hero,” but figuratively, it describes someone who acts tough outside the house but is dominated by their partner at home.

Here’s a quick rundown:

  • Word: Pantoffelheld (masculine noun)
  • Plural: Pantoffelhelden
  • English translation: henpecked husband (informal, derogatory)

Examples of how to use “Pantoffelheld”:

  • Fritz prahlt gerne im Pub, aber zu Hause ist er nur ein Pantoffelheld. (Fritz likes to brag at the pub, but at home he’s just a henpecked husband.)
  • Sie glaubte, er wäre ein starker Mann, bis sie erfuhr, dass er nur ein Pantoffelheld ist. (She thought he was a strong man, until she found out he’s just a henpecked husband.)

Remember: “Pantoffelheld” is a bit old-fashioned and carries a negative connotation. It’s best to avoid using it unless you’re going for a humorous effect.