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  • Ilinca Stroe

Christmas Wishes, Romanian Style

To a nation where people wish each other things on a wildly wide range of occasions, from having a haircut to getting down to work or wearing new shoes, the Christmas and New Year wishes are highly important. Whether made over the phone, in a text message, by email or handwritten in a classical Christmas card, the winter holidays wishes go in different tones and styles. Let’s review some of them.

1) Classical & common

Standard wishes necessarily include a reference to good health. They typically start with “îţi/vă doresc” (“I wish you”) and sometimes mention happiness and good luck, some other times – accomplishments, joy or a phrase like “şi tot ce îţi doreşti” (“and everything you wish for”). Plus the classical “la mulţi ani!” (“to many years!”).

Here are some examples, with their close translations:

  • “La mulţi ani cu sănătate, fericire şi tot ce îţi doreşti!” (“To many years, with good health, happiness and everything you wish for!”)

  • „Sărbatorile Crăciunului şi Anului Nou să vă aducă tot ce-i mai bun pe lume, multă iubire, fericire şi prosperitate.” (“Let the Christmas and New Year holidays bring you all the best in the world, lots of love, happiness and prosperity.”)

  • „Sfintele Sărbători de Crăciun şi Anul Nou să vă aducă sănătate, putere de muncă şi multe satisfacţii alături de cei dragi. La Mulţi Ani!” (“Let the Holy Christmas and New Year celebrations bring you good health, work stamina and lots of satisfactions along with your dear ones. To Many Years!”)

  • „Anul 2019 ce stă să vină să vă aducă sănătate, fericire şi împlinirea tuturor speranţelor! Sărbători fericite! LA MULŢI ANI!” (“Let year 2019 which is about to come bring you good health, happiness and the fulfillment of all your hopes! Happy holidays! TO MANY YEARS!”

2) Spiritual/Religious

This type of wishes point out the holiness of the holidays and they typically start, more formally, with “fie ca acest…” (“may this…”). References to religious characters like Jesus Christ or Saint Mary may be included, as well as to the notion of “light”, and the general tone is more solemn, more ceremonious.

Let’s go through some examples, with their close translations:

  • „Fie ca Pruncul născut în ieslea din Bethleem să vă umple casele şi vieţile cu bucurie, sănătate şi multă înţelepciune pentru anul care vine. LA MULŢI ANI!” (“May the Baby born in the stable of Bethlehem fill your houses and your lives with joy, good health and much wisdom for the year to come. TO MANY YEARS!”)

  • „Fie ca sărbătorile de iarnă să vă aducă bucuria Crăciunului prin speranţă, spiritul Crăciunului prin pace, emoţia Crăciunului prin dragoste.” (“May the winter holidays bring you the joy of Christmas through hope, the spirit of Christmas through peace, the emotion of Christmas through love.”)

  • “Tată Iubitor, ajută-ne ca de Crăciun să ne reamintim de Naşterea Lui Iisus, si să spunem şi altora, cu ajutorul colindelor; să vorbim despre bucuria păstorilor, despre închinarea celor trei înţelepţi; să închidem uşa sentimentelor de ură şi să o deschidem pe cea a iubirii. Crăciun Fericit!” (“Loving Father, helps us remember the Birth of Jesus at Christmas, and tell others about it through carols; let us talk about the joy of the shepherds, about the adoration of the three wise men; let us shut the door to feelings of hatred and open it to love. Happy Christmas!”)

3) Humorous

To counter some of the solemnity of the occasion, some wish-makers resort to light humour in their Christmas wishes. No clichés or standard phrases here, apart perhaps from this big favourite: the verse. The fact that “tot românul e poet” (“every Romanian is a poet”) becomes a bit more evident on this occasion, as people feel very tempted to send wishes with rhythm and rhyme (or at least rhythm).

Here go a couple of examples, with their next-best translations:

* „Crăciunul este acea perioadă minunată în care te gândeşti la toţi cei dragi şi… la ce mărime poartă la pulover! Să ai un Craciun magic!” (“Christmas is that wonderful time of the year when you think of your dear ones and… their pullover size! May you have a magic Christmas!”)

* „Moş Crăciun bate la uşă, / “Santa Claus knocks on the door,

Scoate mâna din mănuşă / Takes his hand out of his glove

Şi vă dă din palma lui / And out of his palm he pours

Darurile cerului, / The gifts of heaven

Lângă brad şi lângă foc / Beside the fir tree, beside the fire

Să vă umple de noroc!” / With good luck to fill you up!”

Irrespective of which type of wish you end up choosing to warm up your dear ones’ hearts and let them know you’re thinking of them this Christmas, may you have the best of Christmases and the most joyous Happy New Year! :)


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