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Hebrew

6 Strange Hebrew Words That Don’t Directly Translate to English

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I love words. I’m a writer, so I kind of have to. So, I get really excited when I learn new words and phrases, especially phrases from other languages that don’t perfectly translate into English. Recently, Thought Catalog made a list of 19 Hebrew words that don’t have a direct translation.

Here are six of my favorite and most bizarre:

READ: My Son Goes to Hebrew School Online. Here’s Why

1. Ani meta alecha

A very dramatic way of saying how deeply something affects you, such as saying “I’m dying” when something is very funny to you. It can also be translated as “I die for you,” which is a way to express how much you love someone.

2. Neshama 

It is often used as a term of endearment, but means “soul.” So if someone calls you “my soul,” it implies that you’re so integral to their lives, you are a part of them.

3. L’ecole sratim

It roughly translates as “to eat movies,” but is used conversationally when someone is attracted to drama, and makes a big deal out of nothing, or causes trouble.

4. Go’al nefesh

The first word means “revulsion,” while the second means “soul.” So, basically, you’re so repulsed, you feel it in your soul. Pretty serious.

5. La’asot chaim

You say this when someone is about to do something exciting, as it means “to do or make life.”

6. Sof ha’olam smola

This is what you say when a destination is in the middle of nowhere–the direction translation is “at the end of the world, turn left.”

Read the other 13 words over at Thought Catalog.

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