Why do Americans say oh my gosh?


Oh my gosh, expression for emotions in the US!

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Since we always live privately during our visits to the USA, we of course also occasionally watch the TV program there. This year I noticed extremely that there is said quite often " oh my gosh ."

I thought first, they just mumble "Oh my god", but on closer listening I heard that they really say "oh my gosh."

But why do Americans say oh my gosh, I wanted to know now?

My daughter-in-law told me that when Americans are emotional, which is often the case on TV, they express their emotions with the phrase. So if there is something awful there, or unbelievable, say: Oh my gosh!

They do not say Oh My God to avoid the word "God", there is a simple explanation.

You should not abuse the name of God!

This second commandment forbids Christians to call the name of God reverent.

Most of the American population is Christian faith. They do not like the use of the Lord's name through casual speech, abuse on every occasion, or devaluation.

Gosh means the same thing as   God. It is only slightly modified so as not to banalize the name of God and not to violate the biblical commandment.

Already confusing that there is this replacement word for it. An alternative would be "oh my godness".

Oh my Gosh is an expression of astonishment. He is now also in the German vernacular, especially used by young people like.

The German translation for oh my gosh!

Oh my God, man, thunder, oh my god, damn it, for heaven's sake and many more.

Why do Americans say oh my gosh, that makes some people think!

Actually amazing how many times many say oh my god, me too. Maybe you should really think about how often this word is used and where it makes sense or not. I think you do not have to use it as unreasonably and recklessly as it is happily done today.

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  • I personally do not care which word is used. Variants in the US are still "holy cow", "holy moly", "good lord", "good land" etc.

  • Ok, I think the Americans are no different from us when I think about how often I say the name of God ... but let's just leave that. But I think you're right, one less time is probably more. Nice post.
    LG Frank

  • Hi,

    Although I've noticed this phrase many times before, but I've never thought about the formation!
    Thanks for the enlightenment 🙂

    Best regards, Lisa

  • Thank you for your explanation! I've been asking this question so many times and now I finally have my logical explanation for that 😀

    Many greetings
    Denise of

  • I think I've heard that before, but in the meantime I forgot it. Just imagine, Americans would hear us ranting so many times! Jeez!

    best regards

  • I lived in the USA for a while and adapted myself (unconsciously). I also used "Oh My God" a lot and decided to do less - even in German. Is quite dramatic 😉
    All the best,
    Theresa | Primetime chaos

  • besassique

    I've been wondering for a long time too 😀 super cool that you found out <3
    Have a wonderful day
    dearest greetings

  • Unfortunately, I have never been to the USA. But I think it's great that you found out. I also say Oh my god sometimes.

    LG Jasmine

  • tomatoes island

    I do not know if I have heard the saying before. In the future, I will pay attention to it. Thanks for the explanation.
    LG Melli

  • I unconsciously say "Oh my gosh" again and again and did not know where that came from. Thanks for the explanation, now I'm a little smarter again and can continue to use this phrase with peace of mind 🙂

    best regards

  • Dear Sigrid,

    that's funny - I really never noticed! ... or I could not do anything with it ;-). good to know for next time!

    I really like your blog posts! They are always super informative and written witty <3!

    have a nice evening!
    best regards

  • Thank you for your explanation. I like such background knowledge because you need a lot or say something without knowing why.
    best regards

  • Honestly, I did not worry. But now that I read that, I ask myself the same question. I mean, I hardly use the expression, but still.

  • I think it's great that you explain the Americans so well here. The Canadians say so too. The British are more likely to take "Oh my goodness". I also had to smile a bit :). Greetings Julia

  • Oh how interesting, I did not know that either. ??
    The Americans are generally very emotional on TV ... there is nothing without "SO.AMAZING." Or "OH MY ... something". ?

    Best regards ?

  • world astronauts

    Haha, yes we hear that expression again and again. However, I have to admit that when I am longer in the US or with Americans I also start to use this term xD

  • Dear Sigrid,
    I know the expression well and I also know its meaning. Why Americans do not just say "Oh my god!" Was completely new to me! Thank you for this contribution!
    Enjoy your day!

  • lisarose28

    A very interesting contribution! I have often thought about our way of expressing it and have gotten used to it. But that is said in the US "oh my gosh", I did not know that!

    best regards

  • Hey my love! A thought-provoking contribution! I think that the Americans are somehow right! You should not abuse the name of God!

    best regards

  • I have never inquired about these three words so haha

    It comes from the Americans and we do it without asking ...

    Since we are Catholic, but not very much with the Church's hat, I think Oh my God is not so bad now 🙂

    LG Danie

    • You just say it like that, I do not feel different sometimes, but I find the background interesting.
      best regards

  • Oh the Americans ... already a funny people 😀
    I miss her haha
    Love from


    • That's right, dear Jil, I miss her too. Unfortunately, you're available on WordPress, too bad I wanted to follow you.
      Love green

  • Aaah, Sigrid - great that finally someone explains! Have heard the expression countless times and wondered each time, what it has on it. "Again what learned" - as my ex-boss would have said 😀

    best regards

  • Very interesting, somehow I also guessed it. Thank you for the contribution
    LG Natalia

  • Haha cool post! I also got used to Oh my gosh but honestly never knew where it came from, just caught it. Thanks for enlightening 🙂

  • I've never thought it could have a "deeper" meaning. Interesting! Thank you 🙂

  • I've never thought about it 😀 But it's funny 😉

    best regards

  • I already knew the meaning. And as with you, she also led me to rethink at that time. I now use other phrases to express surprise or horror, namely the Austrian "Marantjosef", which is very similar in origin. ?

    Best regards, Nicoletta

  • funny! I've heard the word in American series more than once and I thought that was just a variation of god - but I did not think that it was modified to avoid mentioning the name of God so often: 9
    Carol Karolina

  • Hey Sigrid,
    I have never really thought about that before, but when I watch English TV series or TV shows I also notice 😀
    But you're right, maybe you should really think more about using words in your everyday >

  • Exciting! I did not know that either!

  • Dear Sigrid

    Hmmm ... I always thought my "oh my god"!

    Thank you for the enlightenment, what super exciting to read everything!

    Have a nice weekend!


  • hydrogen peroxide

    Yes, cool, again learned something. Funnily enough, I say that surprisingly often, I've read it a lot on Tumblr and I've just added it to my >

    Greetings Anni from http://hydrogenperoxid.net

  • So I was not aware of that! Right here in Bavaria, the word "God" is used constantly without really thinking about it ... LG Ina

  • Maybe the Americans were Swabians? 😀 "O mai gosch!" Means "My Fr *** e" in the case

  • Hello,
    That's the same with us. So I mean, we were raised that way too. At the time, my parents did not want us to use the word "God" so often that it would not be trite at some point. My grandmother is very religious and then it is paid attention 🙂

    Love Linni

  • My mother used to say "oh my gosh" during her time in England. I think that's because she never actually escapes.

  • Hmmm I've never thought about it .. Now that I think about it, I realize that I also say that from time to time 🙂 how funny!

    Best regards,
    Laura from http://www.lauratopa.com

  • Ha! I've always wondered that! Honestly. But now that you know it sounds logical ... Thank you!

  • That is very interesting! of course I did not know yet.

  • Interesting and somehow logical, if you read it that way. Thank you for your explanations always nice to read.

    Lg Ina

  • primetime chaos

    So my friends in the US use "Oh my Gosh" and "Oh my God" absolutely the same - even those who are very religious. Perhaps they are unaware that the "gosh" is used as a counter-effect to the banalization of the name of God. Anyway, a very interesting explanation 🙂

  • I did not know that, learned something again! 🙂 But also logical.

    Nice start of the week!
    All the best,

  • I often use the phrase in my blogs or in colloquial >

    • I also try to avoid it, but I must honestly say it does not always work. Sometimes it just slides out ... ..very funny how you get used to some things.
      best regards

  • I like the thought 🙂 For example, I try to avoid "Oh my God" because I do not believe in any god at all? Best regards, Janine

  • Hello Sigrid,
    I've also noticed many times that the Americans always say "Oh my Gosh". I have not thought much, but rather believed that this is the more modern statement of Oh my God. But very interesting to learn why certain sentences are spoken and what thoughts and intentions are behind it.

    I wish you a nice evening 🙂

    dearest greetings

    • Hello Lisa, I felt like you! When you watch TV in the USA, you hear it all the time and that's why I've been investigating.
      best regards

  • I remember that well. In the beginning I think I said Oh my god and later only gosh. Nice post.

    All the best

    Jules from http://www.travelandliveabroad.com

  • Since I've already asked myself and not even my friend of americans could answer me that.

  • Very interesting contribution! I did not know before - again something learned! 🙂

    best regards
    Sara from https://www.colorandcontinents.com

  • a very cool post my love! Thanks to the American exchange student, I already knew about the origin of the phrase ... but I have not realized yet that there are also different meanings here! extremely interesting!
    we also use our translation constantly 😉

    Best regards too,
    ❤ Tina from http://www.liebewasist.com

    • I knew nothing about the origin, I just noticed that it is always said on TV. Whether for joy or sadness oh my gosh always comes.
      best regards

  • Holy shit .. but I hear more often 😉

  • Go to a shit.

    How ridiculous to replace "god" with "gosh", when everybody knows it means the same thing. Hypocritical religious spinners. Gosh's own country.

  • Thanks for this explanation. I had often wondered if I had just interrogated myself. Last week, on vacation, I met Americans again and this time I listened carefully. "Oh my gosh" was definitely said and I decided to google it now. And thanks to your explanation, I'm a little smarter again.

    • When I watch TV over there I hear that all day that has given me the impetus for my report.
      best regards

  • Daniel Achenrainer

    Thanks, now I got it! ?

  • That's right, Americans say "oh my gosh" for that reason. The interesting thing is that the "god" is not the name but Jachwe or Yahweh (there are other pronunciations). That is also the reason that we use the word "God" because we can not misuse his name. That's why the Americans are shooting beyond the mark.

  • The question is, what is better:
    Whether you think something, but say otherwise ..
    Or you just say what you think ..
    Therefore, if you think "oh my god", then you should say so, and do not do so. Typically Amis.

    ps: Oh my god, no idea how I ended up here!

  • What religious differences exist! For Muslims, the name of God (here 'Allah') can not be pronounced enough. It has long been known by the Jews that the name (there, JHWE ') can not be pronounced. And the Christians stand in the middle, they should only call God, if that is worth it. But it's really ridiculous to say 'Gosh' instead.

  • If now God would also be called God, as long as they say no name everything is ok ... .. There are many gods.

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