“για χαλάλι σου” τι σημαίνει;

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Apollodorus

Member
English UK
“για χαλάλι σου” τι σημαίνει;

χαλάλι is an Arabic word (helâl) that Triantafyllides (Λεξικό της κοινής Νεοελληνικής) defines as an adverb used “για κτ. που, αν και μου κοστίζει, το διαθέτω όμως με ευχαρίστηση”, i.e., something that although it costs us, we nevertheless spend/afford with pleasure (?)

Babiniotis (Λεξικό της Νέας Ελληνικής Γλώσσας, ΛΝΕΓ) equates it with δεν πειράζει (it doesn’t matter) and άξιζε να γίνει, (“let it be/deserve it/be worth it”?)

As if that wasn’t complicated enough, things only get worse when χαλάλι is used in expressions for which I can’t think of any English translation or equivalent whatsoever.

χαλάλι σου!/χαλάλι να σου γίνει! etc. seems to be somewhere between English “I don’t begrudge you that” and “good on you” (?)

για as in “για πές μoυ” sounds like another Arabic interjection as in yāllāh (unless it’s για as in “για το Θεό”?)

So, what is “για χαλάλι σου”?
 
  • ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    As if that wasn’t complicated enough

    Complicated? not at all. All of them are correct. Simply, some entries and meanings of some dictionaries would need a limited re-editing just for completion.

    In the example χαλάλι τόσοι κόποι, αφού πέτυχα αυτό που ήθελα of the Λεξικό της κοινής Νεοελληνικής χαλάλι could be replaced either by δεν πειράζει (Babiniotis) που έκανα [ή υπέμεινα] τόσους κόπους….or άξιζανάξιζε να γίνουν] (Babiniotis) τόσοι κόποι,… Note that in many cases, the word χαλάλι is pleonastically used together with its purely Greek equivalent, e.g. in the other example of the Λεξικό της κοινής Νεοελληνικής Ό,τι και να κάνεις γι΄αυτό το παιδί, χαλάλι του, το αξίζει either χαλάλι του or το αξίζει could be omitted, the meaning of the sentence remaining unaltered, but the two together sound stronger.
    An additional meaning of χαλάλι [σου and in all persons] is σε συγχωρώ, δεν σού κρατώ κακία (=[never mind], I forgive you and I don’t hold a grudge against you), e.g. a very dear or respected person is accidentally breaking an expensive china cup of yours and, at their shock and despite your inner disappointment, you are comfortingly saying: “Δεν πειράζει, χαλάλι σου!". Again, either of these two expressions could stand alone, although together sound more comforting.
    According to Babiniotis χαλάλι<dialectal Turk. halal<Turk. helal "legitimate, justified"<Arab. halāl "allowed, appropriate, fair"

    “για χαλάλι σου”
    I 'm not aware of such an expression. Perhaps confused with the expression "για χατίρι σου"?

    για as in “για πές μoυ” sounds like another Arabic interjection as in yāllāh
    No connection whatsoever of the Greek word "για" with the Arabic llāh.
    In the phrase “για πες μoυ” the word "για" is a hortatory particle used with verbs either in the subjunctive or, mainly, in the imperative mood, in a rather folksy style. In the phrase “για το Θεό” or "για όνομα του Θεού" the word "για" is a preposition, the whole phrase being an exclamation to express impatience, annoyance, urgency, or desperation, as e.g. in the English "for God's sake!".
     

    Apollodorus

    Member
    English UK
    It's from the album "Χαλάλι" performed by Irene Papadopuolou. I believe it was released in 2019.

    The phrase sounded complicated to me in the sense that I couldn't think of any English equivalent.

    The example δεν σού κρατώ κακία you're giving would be perfectly clear to me, unlike the χαλάλι phrase.

    I did try to understand it via Turkish-Arabic "helal/halal" but it still didn't make sense.

    Your clarification does help quite a bit though.

    As to “για", I was under the impression that it is used in two distinct senses:

    (1) as in “για το Θεό” or "για όνομα του Θεού" which usually means "for"

    and

    (2) as in "για πες μου", "για έλλα δω", etc. which to me seemed to have the meaning of "come" as in Turkish "ya gel burda" and which I assumed came from Arabic "ya" via Turkish. It is of course possible that this is not the case, although the similarity is striking.
     
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    Apollodorus

    Member
    English UK
    When you learn a new language, or anything new, it is common to make mistakes. It’s part of the learning process.

    In my case, when I say κοιτάζω για να δω, I look for/in order to see, “για” is obviously the preposition meaning “for/in order to” which comes from Ancient Greek διά and has an Indo-European root.

    On the other hand, when I say για να δω, let me see, για κοίτα look!, για πές μου tell me, etc., “για” here is the hortatory particle meaning “let/come” which is spelt like the preposition and sounds similar to it but is in fact, the Arabic vocative particle “yā”, o! hey!

    The Turkish-Arabic origin of the hortatory particle “για” is also suggested by its occurrence in other Turkish-influenced languages like Bulgarian, я ела ya ela and Romanian ia vino. Also, in all these languages, as in Greek, it is a colloquial term. Can this be just coincidence? I tend to doubt it.
     

    Apollodorus

    Member
    English UK
    To sum up, here are the facts:

    Arabic “yā”: yā allāh, yā Moustapha

    Turkish “ya”: ya Rabbim, ya Mustafa, ya gel buruda

    Greek “για”: για έλα δο, ya ela do

    Bulgarian “ya” (“я”): я ела, ya ela

    Romanian “ia”: ia vino

    Basically, there are two possibilities regarding the origins of the Modern Greek (MG) hortatory particle “για” (which is distinct from the preposition):

    Possibility I (Πιθανότητα A)


    WHAT: derivation of “για” from the Arabic vocative particle “yā” via Turkish interjection/exclamation “ya”.

    HOW: through direct contact of Arabic speakers with Turkish speakers and of the latter with Greek, Bulgarian and Romanian speaking populations. The colloquial use of the particle suggests its spread among the lower social strata.

    WHEN: after the Islamisation of Turkey and subsequent Turkish occupation of Greek, Bulgarian and Romanian speaking areas.

    EVIDENCE: geographical occurrence, shared meaning and colloquial use, etc., all of which makes it virtually self-evident

    Possibility II (Πιθανότητα B)

    WHAT: original Greek preposition (inexplicably) used as hortatory particle.

    HOW: ???

    WHEN: ???

    EVIDENCE: ???

    The evidence for possibility II (B) is very shaky to non-existent IMO.
     
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    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    When you learn a new language, or anything new, it is common to make mistakes. It’s part of the learning process.
    This is true and nobody blamed you for making any mistakes, but from what you write, there easily emerges the question: Are you really a learner of Greek or you participate in the Greek forum just to demonstrate advanced linguistical knowledge? anyway, either version is very welcome, Greek posters are here to help. However, at # 7 above you said “which I assumed came from Arabic "ya" via Turkish. It is of course possible that this is not the case, although the similarity is striking.”, whereas in # 8 you don’t ask a question about the origin of the Greek “για”, but you make an indisputable statement (but is in fact, the Arabic vocative particle “yā”, o! hey!) and a few lines below you end up with “Can this be just coincidence? I tend to doubt it.”, which simply means that it is reinforcing your above statement. Don’t they look a bit contradictory? Finally, after some more research you're back absolutely confident.

    It's from the album "Χαλάλι" performed by Irene Papadopuolou. I believe it was released in 2019.
    I haven’t heard neither of the album nor of the performer; so, I can’t judge the correctness of its lyrics. What I have said is that I ‘m just not aware of the expression “για χαλάλι σου”, containing the word “για”.

    As to “για", I was under the impression that it is used in two distinct senses:
    Well, the word “για”, as given by leading dictionaries, can have the following functions: 1) a preposition (with more than 10-12 different uses/senses) [<διά] 2) (dialect.) an interrogative adverb or a cause conjunction [<γιατί] 3) a hortatory particle 4) (dialect.) separating conjunction [as simple “or"] or a correlative conjunction as either/or [<Turk. ya] 5) (dialect.) a corroboratory particle, placed at the end of a clause (more usually used in northern parts of Greece) [<Turk. ya].

    The Turkish-Arabic origin of the hortatory particle “για” is also suggested by its occurrence in other Turkish-influenced languages like Bulgarian, я ела ya ela and Romanian ia vino. Also, in all these languages, as in Greek, it is a colloquial term. Can this be just coincidence? I tend to doubt it.
    As for “για” of the function in question (function # 3 “a hortatory particle”), about which you seem to be confident in respect to its Turkish/Arabic origin, please be informed that, as I wrote above in # 5, there‘s no connection whatsoever of the Greek word "για" with the Arabic llāh and any similarity, although striking, is just coincidence. It derives from the Ancient Greek exclamation εἶα in this course [Modern Greek<Medieval Greek [long before the Ottoman/Turkish occupation]< ἰά < ἴα < εἶα]. See Greek Word Study Tool and indicative examples: ἀλλ’ εἶα χώρει καὶ κόμιζ’ Ἰάσονα, Eur. Med. 790 (MG αλλά για πήγαινε και φέρε τον Ιάσονα)/ άλλ' εἶα δὴ νῦν ἐν σοὶ σκεψώμεθα. Plat. Soph. 239b (αλλά, για να / έλα να / ψάξουμε μέσα σου γι' αυτό)
     

    Apollodorus

    Member
    English UK
    "Are you really a learner of Greek or you participate in the Greek forum just to demonstrate advanced linguistical knowledge?"

    Sorry, but I don't recall claiming any "advanced linguistical knowledge" at all. I know very little Greek and even less Turkish or Arabic.

    I never said that you have to listen to any album or singer. It's on YouTube and I simply stated where I got the phrase from since you suggested I was confusing it with για χατίρι σου which I didn't. How else was I supposed to respond to that?!

    Plus, I also specifically stressed that as a newcomer to a language you can make mistakes. That's the whole point of asking questions on a forum, isn't it?

    Since when does the phrase "I doubt it" express "confidence"? If I had thought that the matter was settled I would have said so.

    To be perfectly honest, I really don't care where “για” comes from. I was merely stating that to me it sounds like two different words from two different languages.

    For example, the preposition “για” sounds to me more like a voiced as in “γιατί” ghiati whereas the particle is pronounced more like Arabic “ya”, hence my assumption that it might be from Arabic given the similarity and this may still be its derivation if not in Greek at least in Turkish, Bulgarian and Romanian.

    Again, I may be wrong and I don't mind being corrected.

    Finally, if “για” does come from Greek and there is evidence for it, that's even better as far as I'm concerned. That's precisely why I left question marks under Possibility II, to be completed by further information once it is obtained and as an invitation to others to offer further suggestions if they have any.

    From what you're saying there is a third possibility, which is fine by me. Why on earth would I object?

    But, not to worry, I won't ask any more questions. Thank you.
     
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    ozcan

    New Member
    Turkish
    We say 'Helal olsun" in turkish. This expression has two meanings in our language: 1- bravo/congratulations/good for him/you 2- It's all yours. Helal is an Arabic word for sure.
     

    Helleno File

    Senior Member
    English - UK
    As an undergraduate student I specialised in mediaeval German dialects, although I turned down an offer to pursue postgraduate studies in that field in order to do something totally different. I can happily say I know nothing at all about Greek etymology. However, in general I would add that although superficial linguistic similarity can be a legitimate starting point for etymological enquiry, it can equally become a tempting route towards etymological certainty without linguistic evidence. (I may even may have been guilty of this myself on this forum. :eek:.) At worst such hypotheses can be the basis for erroneous "popular etymology". My favourite in German was the relatively modern expression "Sündeflut" - the "sin flood" for what we call in English the Great Flood (Noah's ark etc.). This derived mistakenly from the Middle High German "sintflut" or Total Flood (Modern G. Gesamtflut).

    To construct a convincing etymology of a word we would ideally we need a historical chain of sources as language use was very different 500 or 1000 years ago. This would include a proposed route of introduction via knowledge of historical dialects, phonological processes and lexical contexts including assimilation and differentiation. Sometimes that exists but quite often it does not. As others have said before on this forum etymology requires caution and sources.
     

    Apollodorus

    Member
    English UK
    However, in general I would add that although superficial linguistic similarity can be a legitimate starting point for etymological enquiry, it can equally become a tempting route towards etymological certainty without linguistic evidence.

    Actually, there was no "etymological certainty" on my part. Despite attempts by some to misconstrue my statements otherwise, the main motivation behind my etymological enquiry was to establish what I had been suspecting all along, viz., that the preposition "για" and the particle "για" are two totally distinct and unrelated words. As it happens, my suspicion turned out to be justified. The precise etymological origin was and is a secondary concern.

    On the other hand, it would appear that some people are rather too quick to insinuate untoward motives and throw baseless accusations around.

    As others have said before on this forum etymology requires caution and sources.

    I think it is equally if not more important not to take other people’s statements out of context.

    When I said “Can this be just coincidence? I tend to doubt it” I obviously meant the simultaneous occurrence of the same particle “ya” in five different languages, not just in Greek (see my post).

    When you have five different languages in one geographical area, a Semitic one (Arabic), a Turkic one (Turkish), a Hellenic one (Greek), a Slavic one (Bulgarian) and a Romance one (Romanian) all using the same particle “ya”, then I think it is legitimate to wonder whether this is due to coincidence or to shared etymology, quite apart from the fact that my suggestion was just a working hypothesis and nothing else.

    Even if the Greek “ya” does have a Greek origin, this still leaves three languages where “ya” may have an Arabic origin: Turkish, Bulgarian and Romanian. So, the problem is far from settled. Not that it really matters, though.

    More important is that my original question was “για χαλάλι σου” τι σημαίνει; (what does gia halali sou mean?). This was already perfectly answered by Sotos and there was no need for anyone to intervene by claiming that they had "never heard the expression", suggesting that I confused it with “για χατίρη σου” and then feigning offence at the suggestion that the particle “για” might be anything but Greek – as if foreign words in the Greek language were totally unheard of.
     

    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    I never said that you have to listen to any album or singer.
    I didn’t say you said that. I simply informed you that I hadn’t heard of, and therefore hadn’t listened to, this album and, specifically, that I wasn’t aware of the said expression.

    Plus, I also specifically stressed that as a newcomer to a language you can make mistakes.
    And I said: “This is true and nobody blamed you for making any mistakes”.

    That's the whole point of asking questions on a forum, isn't it?
    Certainly, that’s the point, but you didn’t ask a question on the forum, but presented “Facts” and two “impressive” tables, although the second one half-finished.

    Since when does the phrase "I doubt it" express "confidence"?
    Can this be just coincidence? I tend to doubt it.
    (i.e. the presence of the particle “για” in Arabic, Turkish, Bulgarian, Romanian and Greek). If you wanted to express a neutral ignorance, you could just wonder: Can this be just coincidence? and stop there. As long as you add “I tend to doubt it”, this, in simple logic, means “I am being led to accept something else, that this is not a coincidence, consequently I am leaning to accept an Arabic origin”; this can be easily seen in your observation “The Turkish-Arabic origin of the hortatory particle για” is also suggested by its occurrence in other Turkish-influenced languages” and, especially, a few lines above in the same post (# 8) of yours, when you indisputably write “but is in fact (i.e. the particle “για”), the Arabic vocative particle “yā”, o! hey!”. You can’t deny that, can you? Doesn’t this express confidence?

    Actually, there was no "etymological certainty" on my part.
    but is in fact (i.e. the particle “για”), the Arabic vocative particle “yā”, o! hey!”. If this is called uncertainty, that’s a new concept to be learned.

    the preposition “για” sounds to me more like a voiced as in “γιατί” ghiati whereas the particle is pronounced more like Arabic “ya”,
    This, of course, is your own view, whereas we Greeks pronounce all “για” in the same way, surely not in an Arabic sound. I presume you didn’t notice the five different functions of “για” which I quoted above, since you keep only referring to the preposition and the particle.

    hence my assumption that it might be from Arabic given the similarity
    Here, you ‘re changing your view back to “assumption”.
     
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    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    That's precisely why I left question marks under Possibility II, to be completed by further information once it is obtained...
    You may say that, but you fail to refer to your final view. Again, without having a sound knowledge on the matter, you express biased negative views (very shaky to non-existent) regarding the EVIDENCE of Possibility II (Πιθανότητα B).

    if “για” does come from Greek and there is evidence for it
    Even if the Greek “ya” does have a Greek origin
    From what you're saying there is a third possibility
    Although you say “I may be wrong and I don't mind being corrected”, your “if” clauses about “για” and your mention of a third possibility (which can easily be interpreted that you ‘re insisting on the existence of your [wrong] Possibilities I and II), show you ‘re still not convinced about its Greek origin; that's your absolute right.

    the preposition "για" and the particle "για" are two totally distinct and unrelated words.
    But no-one claimed the opposite. Was there any need for you to resort to an assumed in the beginning and later certain (on your part, but mistaken) etymology in order to ascertain that these were two different words? I hope you finally understood it wasn’t “the original Greek preposition which (inexplicably) was used as hortatory particle”, as you say in Possibility II (Πιθανότητα B)?

    Even if the Greek “ya” does have a Greek origin, this still leaves three languages where “ya” may have an Arabic origin: Turkish, Bulgarian and Romanian. So, the problem is far from settled.
    ??? I really don’t understand. Your problem is to learn and understand Greek (if you are still interested after all these) or to understand how come that “ya” has an Arabic origin in Turkish, Bulgarian and Romanian?

    there was no need for anyone to intervene by claiming that they had "never heard the expression"
    If you forget, I should remind you that your “As if that wasn’t complicated enough…” in # 1 was the reason why I gladly offered to solve your puzzlement, as most, I believe, Greek poster do. In later questions of yours on the forum, it would be useful for you to set a “stop” to any other posters beyond the first one after you; you should say “Stop, up to here is enough, I don’t want any more answers to my question”.

    as if foreign words in the Greek language were totally unheard of.
    On the contrary, if you took the time and trouble to look at other postings, you could see that this cannot stand at all. Anyway, Greek posters on this forum are happy to communicate with others, regardless they are just learners of Greek or experts, and give helpful answers (provided they are able to and the learners willing to listen to these answers). And most, I think, of our foreign friends are glad with this communication and express their appreciation, which we Greeks reciprocate.
     

    Apollodorus

    Member
    English UK
    I think you should look in the mirror occasionally, might just remind you of Matthew 7:1-5:

    “… Πώς μπορείς και βλέπεις το σκουπιδάκι στο μάτι του αδερφού σου και δε νιώθεις ένα ολόκληρο δοκάρι στο δικό σου μάτι …”

    Fact is, I’ve never been a believer in communism, I believe in individuality. Everybody learns a language in their own way.

    I often find it easier to learn a word when I know more about it. For example, I used to find βλέπω really confusing until I accidentally discovered that it was two different verbs, βλέπω and (εί)δω.

    And it looks like I’m not the only one. People learning English are sometimes confused by “go” and “went” and find it easier to learn or understand it once it is explained to them that they are two different verbs.

    The same happens with Greek “για”. If you really wanted to help, you could have told me from the start that the preposition “για” and the particle “για” are two different words. It would have saved time to both of us and it would have prevented the thread from getting cluttered with unnecessary stuff.

    But you chose to attack me and accuse me of trying to show off my “advanced linguistic knowledge”. There is no such thing as “advanced knowledge", it’s just that different people have different bits of knowledge. That’s what makes us different individuals and personalities and not identical clones of one politically correct prototype.

    I really don’t see the logic of your telling me that you “have never heard” of the expression “για χαλάλι σου” and that I was “confusing” it with something else when Sotos had already translated it for me.

    In normal conversation, people can agree to disagree without resorting to ad hominem attacks.

    IMO forum members who call themselves “senior” ought to cut the others some slack instead of getting jumpy.

    Anyway, I’ve already said that I won’t ask any more questions here, so you can calm down now.
     
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    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    If I really wanted to help, it’s something that you have already seen in ## 4 and 10 as well as in # 2 of the thread “The Commandments of the Seven Wise Men”.

    I didn’t tell you, I just asked for the possibility of your confusing “για χαλάλι σου” with the expression “για χατίρι σου” and this for the purpose of further helping but, unfortunately, I wasn’t able to see your “stop”.

    I don’t call myself “senior”, it’s the system which shows that label.

    Your desire for show-off, apart from this thread, can be easily ascertained if one looks at the repeated long lectures you gave to show other users what the subject of the impersonal Greek verb “βρέχει” is. Πού θα πάει, όμως, some day "you ‘ll grow older, too."

    Finally, my description as Matthew’s hypocrite is really “excellent”. Congrats.
     

    Apollodorus

    Member
    English UK
    Your desire for show-off, apart from this thread, can be easily ascertained if one looks at the repeated long lectures you gave to show other users what the subject of the impersonal Greek verb “βρέχει” is.

    As a matter of fact, the thread “Who rains? Ποιος βρέχει? Poios vrehei?” wasn’t a “lecture” at all. It was a polite, gentlemanly and not altogether uninteresting conversation that all participants enjoyed. I’m guessing this must be why you’re now holding a grudge against me and you feel you must take revenge.

    As for me “telling you when to stop”, there’d have been little point in it as you don’t seem to know the meaning of that word. You’re still trolling me even now. Sad, really.
     

    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek

    I agree, it's really sad that some days ago I decided to offer help and communicate with you. Certainly, όχι χαλάλι σου. That's all.
     

    Apollodorus

    Member
    English UK
    For whatever my opinion is worth, I, too, have never heard and would never say "για χαλάλι σου".

    Well, I found it a bit strange as well, hence the query. When I first watched the video, for a second I thought it wasn't Greek. Even the music is more like a mixture of Arabic/South American or whatever but then that seems to be the trend these day.

    But I do like Irene Papadopoulos. I think she's a Greek from Kazakhstan. Maybe Ioanell can watch the video too, seeing that he has calmed down a bit.

    By the way, would you say "χαλάλι σου!" or "χαλάλι να σου γίνει!", or is that more like a kind of slang?
     

    Αγγελος

    Senior Member
    Greek
    I say "χαλάλι σου!" quite often. I never say "χαλάλι να σου γίνει!", and don't think anyone does. The contrary expression, "χαράμι να σου γίνει!", is occasionally used, though not by me; it is a pretty heavy curse, comparable to "στο λαιμό να σου σταθεί" or "στους γιατρούς να τα φας" (in speaking of ill-gotten money).
     
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