Which alphabet is this?
April 11, 2016 8:06 AM   Subscribe

Two of my friends sent a card that they picked out at our local bodega for my birthday. We had a great laugh and now we're obsessed with figuring out the message. But we can't decipher the alphabet! Help?

Perhaps it's Greek but if it is I cannot understand the translation...help me hive mind!
posted by jeanmari to Writing & Language (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
That is Greek. Can't help with what it says.
posted by Dragonness at 8:11 AM on April 11, 2016 [2 favorites]

Here's what Google says:

Υζεια και χαρα
Για σημερα

Και καδε ημερα
Στην ζιορτη σου


Health and happiness
For today

And every day
In your celebration
posted by harperpitt at 8:13 AM on April 11, 2016 [9 favorites]

Definitely Greek. No idea on the translation, but yeah.
posted by SMPA at 8:14 AM on April 11, 2016

Wait! No it doesn't! Google actually autocorrected me to this original text:

Υγεια και χαρα
Για σημερα
Και καθε μερα
Στην γιορτη

So maybe it's just that, like you, I can't figure out the original cursive-y Greek. I just got luckier with The Goog.
posted by harperpitt at 8:16 AM on April 11, 2016

harperpitt beat me, but that's what I got via OCR + Google Translate as well. I work with a native Greek speaker so if this gets super controversial I can call in the ringer ;)
posted by soren_lorensen at 8:16 AM on April 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

harperpitt's Google Translate version is fine except that the last line is off; it should read:

Health and happiness
For today

And every day—
Happy birthday!

(The last line could equally well read "Happy name-day," since the Greek word covers both, but name-days aren't really a thing in most English-speaking countries. And I added the dash to make it clear that it's not a single sentence/thought.)

Once again, I'll remind people that if you don't know a language, it's fine to just wait for someone who does to come along rather than jump in anyway. And if it's already clear that it's Greek, you're not really adding anything by saying "Yup, it's Greek!"
posted by languagehat at 8:37 AM on April 11, 2016 [33 favorites]

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