Common Words in the Greek and Turkish Language



athens-bazaarThe Greeks were under Ottoman occupation for 400 years and the period of the Ottoman rule are traditionally viewed in a negative light as they are considered a dark time of cultural and economic decline. However, during that time and despite the rivalry that existed between the Greeks and the Ottomans, the Ottoman occupation had a profound impact on the Greek society and language. Today, we can find more than 300 Turkish words that are used daily in the Greek language. Let’s have a look at some of them.

GreekTurkishEnglish
flytzánifincancup
tsépi̱ceppocket
kaíkikayıkboat
manávi̱smanavgreengrocerer
bakáli̱sbakalgrocer
kav̱gáskavgafight
Ntoulápidolapcloset
hampariahabernews
babasbabafather
baharibaharatspice
barutibarutdynamite
bekiarisbekarsingle man
buzukibozukregional musical instrument
divanidivancouch
hamalishamalporter
kaimakikaymakthe creamy part of the milk
karpuzikarpuzwatermelon
tavanitavanceiling
tsantiricadirtent
tsantacantabag

However, there are also several Greek words that the Turkish seem to have been using. These words have either passed into the Turkish language directly from the Greek one or through another language e.g. French or English.

TurkishGreekEnglish
efendiafendis (ancient gr. afthendis)boss
ekolsholioschool
dramatikdramatikosdramatic
diskdiskosdisc
epikepikosepic
epilogepilogosconclusion
erotikerotikoserotic
filozofphilosophosphilosopher
fotometrephotometrophotometer
galaksigalaksiasgalaxy
helikopterhelikopterohelicopter
hidrolizhydrolysihydrolysis
ırgatergatisworker
iklimklimaclimate
kanapeCanapés (ancient gr. konops=mosquito)couch
klorchloriochlorine
monotonmonotonosmonotonous
odeonodioodeum
pilotpilotospilot
sırmasyrmawire