In Dutch we can say 'ik gun jou de opdracht', meaning 'I ... you the assignment'. It's mixture of allow to have and don't begrudge I guess. If I translate the dictionary, it would be 'to desire or approve that somebody else has or gets something'.

A related word would be 'gunfactor', used in business and making deals. It almost sounds like giving an contract to a party you approve of, but that's not quite it. In this case one approves, desires and doesn't begrudge.

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    Not an exact duplicate, but this post may provide you with helpful information – Hank Jan 4 '17 at 19:36
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    Award, perhaps? At least, that's what Google Translate says. – Mick Jan 4 '17 at 19:38
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    There is no English equivalent: english.stackexchange.com/questions/172967/… – michael.hor257k Jan 4 '17 at 19:41
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    Whenever I have to translate that, I usually say I think he/she deserves it more. – RandomStranger Jan 4 '17 at 20:07
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    I want you to have the assignment. – jxh Jan 4 '17 at 21:38

While not an exact substitute, the term favor has some connection

Feel or show approval or preference for

Oxford Dictionaries Online

Similarly, Collins

to be for; support; advocate; endorse


The basic meaning of the word is to not begrudge, which is in fact what Englishmen often use when they want to express this exact sense. I do not believe this can be said in one word in English.

A secondary meaning is to grant [a government contract, etc.], which can be translated as grant, award, or similar.


"Gun een ander ook eens wat!"
"Het is 'm gegund"


My approximations: "Invoke some altruism!" resp. "I hope he gets a break with that". To me 'gunnen' means feeling content/happy about the case of - or the possibility for - someone else to have/achieve something I would have liked myself, or is generally likeable.

  • The question already has an explanation of what the word means, and asks for a (single-word) translation. – Scott Jun 21 '18 at 1:25
  • As someone that doesn't speak Dutch this answer makes no sense to me – Unrelated Jun 21 '18 at 22:07

You could also use the Dutch gunnen to express that you want someone to get something, for example, you want them to get the job the applied for. In English you might use the idiom to root for someone or something:

I'm rooting for you to get the position you applied for.

The Dutch equivalent would be:

Ik gun je de positie waarvoor je gesolliciteerd hebt.

  • Well, not quite the same in my opinion. Rooting is active, gunnen is more passive. – Halfgaar Mar 15 '18 at 11:13
  • To root for is not active per se, from the link: "to wish the best for someone or something in an endeavor or activity." – JJJ Mar 15 '18 at 11:16

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