I am failing to come up with examples for these even though I find myself wanting to use the words in regular conversation. Let me know if you have an example. 

  • Adaraba (Aramaic): Exactly the opposite.  If you are arguing with someone, or laying out an argument yourself, you can lay out the false or opposing argument and then turn it on its head. "It's not an issue of romance. Adaraba. Writing is gritty, ugly work."
  • Stam: (Hebrew): The closest translation is "just." It's a verbal shrug, or a way to say that something stands on its own.  
  • Merci (French): I like it's succinctness as a way of saying thanks with the elegance of thank you. 
  • Davka (Hebrew): Again, the closest translation is "specifically" but it doesn't capture the fullness of the word. It's a way to draw attention to an element of the story or argument. 
  • Yala (Arabic): Let's go. I think, however that it's Israeli slang used like that, and it is not used conversationally in Arabic.  I've been corrected. Apparently, in at least some Arabic dialects it is used that way conversationally. Thanks Tom.
  • B'dieved (Hebrew? Aramaic?): A second best choice,  the choice one resorts to in less than ideal situations. It is used to explain rather than describe the choice. 

4 Responses to 'Words That Exist in Other Languages That Should Be Adopted Into English'

  1. Anonymous said...
    http://writtenpyramids.blogspot.com/2008/07/words-that-exist-in-other-languages.html?showComment=1216382340000#c203924147095471444'> July 18, 2008 at 7:59 AM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


  2. Anonymous said...
    http://writtenpyramids.blogspot.com/2008/07/words-that-exist-in-other-languages.html?showComment=1216382400000#c1197635687737992229'> July 18, 2008 at 8:00 AM

    1) I think it would be kind of cool if, maybe, you wrote a post or a short story or something including all of these words.

    2) In the first sentence of this post, you misspelled "regular".


  3. Writer said...
    http://writtenpyramids.blogspot.com/2008/07/words-that-exist-in-other-languages.html?showComment=1216392300000#c8131199592500745892'> July 18, 2008 at 10:45 AM

    Thanks for pointing that out. It's fixed. I don't think I'd write using these words. They are words that--if I did bring them into English conversation--I would use as verbal shortcuts. In my written English, I am still willing to do the seeking to find the right English word.


  4. Writer said...
    http://writtenpyramids.blogspot.com/2008/07/words-that-exist-in-other-languages.html?showComment=1216392360000#c3776724351396933770'> July 18, 2008 at 10:46 AM

    I might, however, use them in a blog post. I've always felt blogging to be a lazy kind of writing.


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