NZTC International - Word of the Week: unterschreiten


This German word is the opposite of ‘überschreiten’ (to exceed), but has no standard one-word equivalent in English and many other languages. It’s generally translated as ‘to fall below’ (e.g. a value, limit or amount). ‘Overshoot’ and ‘undershoot’ are probably the neatest English equivalents of the German duo, but are usually not appropriate translations in the technical contexts these words tend to appear in. Finnish has a convenient pair of words 'ylittää/alittaa' that match the compact pairing of ‘überschreiten/unterschreiten’ in German. Most other languages have to resort to a much wordier solution!