Armenian words and phrases will especially interest those who are planning to visit Armenia and want to know couple of Armenian words and phrases to make their communication with locals easier and more successful.
Looking forward to visiting the first Christian country? Already prepared your must-see list? Just bought tickets, packed your bags and are ready to leave for Armenia?
We know that planning your big trip to Armenia is an exciting time! But if you’re a savvy traveler and want to be less vulnerable as a tourist, you will also need to learn some Armenian words, greetings and idioms.
Make sure native Armenians will appreciate the effort you put into learning a bit of their language. It shows respect and demonstrates that you truly want to connect with them.
So, get your pencil and paper ready folks, because we are going to learn the most important Armenian phrases that every tourist should know.
If you are about to travel to Armenia, this is exactly what you are looking for!
Armenian Words & Phrases #1: Dear/Darling
What is the most popular Armenian word? Without any hesitation, the majority of Armenians will say it is “Jan” (Ջան).
According to its first definition “Jan” refers to “body”. However, it is the fourth meaning that makes this word so unique and powerful.
Actually “Jan” corresponds to the English words “dear”, “darling” and “honey” though we cannot say they are equivalents.
That’s why it’s better not to translate “Jan”. The only thing you should do is to use this 3 letter Armenian word with the names of your beloved ones (“jan” should follow the person’s name) like many foreigners do.
Armenian Words & Phrases #2: I Love You
Without any exception, everyone in the world wants to love and be loved right back. Accordingly, everyone, especially women love hearing the most powerful phrase “I LOVE YOU”.
In Armenian, it sounds like “Es kez sirum em” (Ես քեզ սիրում եմ).
As for the most powerful word that is the title of countless romantic songs, poems and films in Armenian language is the 3-letter word “Ser” (Սեր).
So, be original. Tell your soul mate “es kez sirum em” (I love you) or call him or her “im ser” (my love). Make your beloved one Google these phrases and understand what you mean. Your creativity will definitely be appreciated.
Armenian Words & Phrases #3: Thank You
For the very first time in life you are in Armenia, you find yourself surrounded with kind and hospitable locals who are willing to help you anytime you wish.
So, how can you express your gratitude? It’s simple! Just say “Shnorhakalutyun” (Շնորհակալություն) to your Armenian friends for all their support and kindness.
Make sure Armenians will appreciate your efforts you put into learning their language or just uttering some simple words like “Shnorhakalutyun” which means “Thank you”.
By the way, instead of “Shnorhakalutyun” many Armenians use the French word “Merci” in everyday conversations. So, if “Shnorhakalutyun” is too difficult to say, just go with “merci”.
Armenian Words & Phrases #4: Armenia
Thousands of people come and leave Armenia without even knowing that the country where they spent incredible time, met incredible people and did incredible things is called “Hayastan” (Հայաստան) in Armenian.
“Hayastan” is made up of the stem “Haya” and suffix “stan”. “Haya” refers to Hayk, the forefather of Armenian nation. Accordingly, a person from “Hayastan” is called “Hay” (Armenian).
Now, you already know that you have booked a trip to “Hayastan” and you are going to meet a lot of “Hayer” (Armenians) here, don’t you?
Armenian Words & Phrases #5: Die (Weirdly in a Positive Sense)
Armenian word “mernel” (մեռնել) means “to die”.
Why did we include this word in our list, you may ask? The thing is that there are many Armenian idioms with the word “mernel” which surprisingly have positive connotations.
One of such phrases is “boyid mernem” (բոյիդ մեռնեմ) which means “Let me die on your height”. Armenians use this idiom to express how much they love and adore a specific person.
“Mernem janid” (Մեռնեմ ջանիդ) is another popular Armenian phrase that expresses the same meaning as “boyid mernem”.
For Armenians, there is nothing wrong with this phrase. However, everything changes when you translate “Mernem janid”.
Its English translation is enough to make you laugh out loud because it sounds like “I die on your body”.
By the way recently the hosts of Armcomedy, an Armenian comedy show, Narek Margaryan and Sergey Sargsyan, made an appearance on the American late-night talk show Conan.
The Armenian showmen helped Conan O’Brien to learn a few new phrases and expressions in Armenian. “Mernem janid” was among those phrases.
Armenian Words & Phrases #6: Showing Empathy
“Let me take your pain away”.
Does the above-mentioned phrase make any sense? Of course, no! And it’s quite normal as this is the literal translation of the Armenian idiom “Tsavt tanem” (Ցավդ տանեմ).
“Tsavt tanem” is an idiom widely used among Armenians who are so kind and caring that are ready to take their beloved one’s pain away.
You too are kind, aren’t you? So, jot down this unique idiom and start taking away the pain of people who mean everything to you using the phrase “Tsavt tanem”.
Armenian Words & Phrases #7: Inch arje?
The odds are you will want to buy some souvenirs or paintings for your mom (or yourself) from your trip to Armenia.
So, to make vendor-customer relationships easier just try to learn some Armenian words and phrases as not many Armenian vendors know foreign languages.
The most important phrase related to your shopping experience will surely be “How much does it cost” which in Armenian language is “Inch arje?” (Ի՞նչ արժե).
Armenian Words & Phrases #8: Welcome
The first thing that you will see in Armenia after leaving the airport is huge posters with the phrase “Welcome to Armenia” or “Bari Galust Hayastan” (Բարի գալուստ Հայաստան).
“Bari Galust” is made up of 2 Armenian words: “Bari” (բարի) which means “kind” and “galust” (գալուստ) which means “coming”, “arrival”.
Note: By the way “Galust” is also an Armenian first name for boys.
So, Armenians, one of the most hospitable nations in the entire world like to welcome their guests with the phrase “bari galust”.
You too do the same when welcoming Armenians to your country. Believe us, Armenian greeting “bari galust” will put smile on your Armenians guests’ face after a long flight.
Armenian Words & Phrases #9: Good Morning
All Armenians start their day saying to each other “Bari or” (բարի օր).
Yes, you got it! “Bari or” is the English “Good morning/day”.
This Armenian greeting is made up of the words “Bari” which means “kind” and “or” which means “day”.
So, Armenians wish each other a “kind day”.
Armenian Words & Phrases #10: Hello
Like other languages, Armenian language also has different ways of greeting someone depending on the relationships between people.
So, if you have just got acquainted with an Armenian or the person you want to greet is your lecturer, boss or is older than you it’s better to say “Barev Dzez” (Բարև Ձեզ).
However, saying your friends “Barev Dzez” will sound weird and artificial. In this case you should use the informal word “Barev”.
Armenian Words & Phrases #11: Good Bye
Armenian word “tstesutyun” (ցտեսություն), which means “good bye” is literally translated as “till our next meeting”.
We are almost sure that you had some difficulties pronouncing this word. Try again and if you still fail to pronounce it correctly there is a more informal way of farewell that you can learn.
The informal one is “hajoghutyun” (հաջողություն), which is translated as “good luck”.
Armenian Words & Phrases #12: Good Night
When the dark sky is already full of stars and it’s time to go to bed, Armenians say to each other “bari gisher” (բարի գիշեր).
“Bari gisher” which is made up of words “bari” (“kind”) and “gisher” (“night”) means “good night”
Armenian Words & Phrases #13: The More Languages You Know, The More Human You Are
Armenians do love and are always proud of their mother tongue. On the other hand, they give great importance to foreign languages.
That’s why more and more Armenians nowadays speak more than one foreign language.
Who knows, maybe that’s the influence of an old saying “Qani lezu gites, aynkan mard es («Քանի լեզու գիտես, այնքան մարդ ես») which is literally translated “How many languages you know, that much more of a human you are”.
Sounds a bit strange and funny, doesn’t it? Yes, but “Qani lezu gites, aynkan mard des” just emphasizes the vital importance of knowing more than one language which will help us discover new cultures and enlarge our world view.
To make it easy, we can paraphrase it as “The more languages you know, the more human you are”.
So, start learning Armenian remembering “Qani lezu gites, aynkan mard es”.
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