Greetings, Partings, Courtesies, Basic Expressions

In most areas the approaching individual is expected to address first the seated or stationary person(s), but this rule is not hard and fast.

Kali mera, spera, nihta Good day, evening, night—all-purpose but somewhat colorless.

Yasou (sas, plural or formal) “Health to you”—standard greeting, parting and toast. Heriteh “Rejoice”—still common with older people in rural areas. The greeting of

the early Christian fathers. Kaloston! Very friendly greeting uttered by those in the community being

approached—a contraction of the two greetings below. Kalos llthatehl Welcome! Literally, “It is well that you have come.” To which the response is:

Kalos sas vreekamehl Literally, “We have found you well!” Very formal usage. Adiou Good-bye—a Venetian loan-word similar to Spanish adios. Ya hara “Health and joy”—very casual parting equivalent to “bye.” Kalo taxidhi Bon voyage.

Na pas sto ka/ό “May you go towards the good”—formal farewell uttered by the

staying party. Kali ora sou The good hour to you.

Pos eesay (eestay)? Formal “how are you,” singular and (plural) second person. Ti kaneis (kaneteh)? More casual “how are you,” singular and (plural) second

person. The response is: Kala, kai esee (esees)? Fine, and you?—singular/familiar (plural/formal). Parakalo Please.

Efharisto (poli) Thank you (very much).

Kai ego You’re welcome (literally, “I also” [thank you]). Occasionally you’ll hear

tipota, “(it was) nothing.” Signoml Excuse (me). Malista Certainly.

En daxl O.K.—used exactly as in English. Neh Yes. Ohi No.


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