Every now and then I am reminded of this:

English: great minds think alike.
German: Zwei Dumme, ein Gedanke (roughly: two idiots, one thought)

What I find fascinating here is that it embodies two completely opposing views on a kind of spontaneous consensus. The British mindset apparently sees it as a suggestion that there is something to it, while the German reacts with suspicion.

The matter is complicated -and simplified - by the fact that both expressions are often used to describe the ...


@jens it's interesting that both seem to go back to the same greek proverb, which had both sides: "Great minds think alike, though fools seldom differ" (mystudentvoices.com/4-quotes-t ).

Of course, that one doesn't appear at first glance to contain the element of self-deprecation that the German saying does, and it's still relevant that there was a split in which half of the saying made it into each is the present-day idioms.

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