Useful phrases in Old English

A collection of useful phrases in Old English, the version of English that was spoken in England from about the 5th to the 11th century.

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See these phrases in any combination of two languages in the Phrase Finder. If you can provide recordings, corrections or additional translations, please contact me.

Key to abbreviations: frm = formal, inf = informal, sg = singular (said to one person), dl = dual (said to two people), pl = plural (said to two or more people).

English Ænglisc (Old English)
Welcome Wilcume
Hello (General greeting) Wes hāl (sg)
Wesaþ hāle (pl)
Wesaþ hāla (pl/f)
How are you? Hu eart þú? (sg)
Hū magon ġit? (dl)
Hū magon ġē? (pl)
Reply to 'How are you?' Iċ mæġ wel. Iċ þancie þē
Long time no see Lange iċ ne ġeseah þē (sg)
Lange iċ ne ġeseah inc (dl)
Lange iċ ne ġeseah ēow (pl)
What's your name? Hū hāttest þū?
My name is ... Iċ hātte ...
Where are you from? Hwanan eart þū?
I'm from ... Iċ eom of ...
Pleased to meet you Mé lícaþ þé tó métanne (sg)
Mé lícaþ éow tó métanne (pl)
Good morning
(Morning greeting)
Gōd morgen sīe þē (sg)
Gōd morgen sīe inc (dl)
Gōd morgen sīe ēow (pl)
Good evening
(Evening greeting)
Gōdne ǣfen
Good night Gōde nihte
(Parting phrases)
Wes hāl (sg)
Wes þū hāl
Wesaþ hāle (pl)
Wesaþ hāla (pl/f)
Far gesund (sg)
Faraþ gesunde (pl)
Faraþ gesunda (pl/f)
God þē mid sīe ("God be with you")
Good luck! Gōd wyrd sīe þē (sg)
Gōd wyrd sīe inc (dl)
Gōd wyrd sīe ēow (pl)
Cheers! Good Health!
(Toasts used when drinking)
Gōd hælo!
Have a nice day Gōd dæġ sīe þē (sg)
Gōd dæġ sīe inc (dl)
Gōd dæġ sīe ēow (pl)
Bon appetit /
Have a nice meal
Þæt se ǣt þē līcie!
Bon voyage /
Have a good journey
Far þū wel
I understand Iċ understande
I don't understand Iċ ne understande
Yes Ġēa
No Nese
Maybe Wēninga
I know Iċ wāt
I don't know Iċ nāt
Please speak more slowly Iċ bidde þē þæt þū sprece slāwor
Please say that again Iċ bidde þē þæt þū þæt eftige
Please write it down Iċ bidde þē hit to āwrītanne
Do you speak Old English? Spricst þū Englisċ?
Yes, a little
(reply to 'Do you speak ...?')
Ġēse, lytel
Speak to me in Old English Cweþ mē on Ænglisċ tō
How do you say ... in Old English? Hū seġþ man ... on Ænglisċ?
Excuse me Belāda mē
How much is this? On hwǣm is þis?
Sorry Belāda mē
Please Iċ bidde þē (sg)
Iċ bidde inc (dl)
Iċ bidde ēow (pl)
Thank you Iċ þancie þē
Iċ þancie inc (dl)
Iċ þancie ēow (pl)
Reply to thank you Wilcume
Where's the toilet / bathroom? Hwær stent se gangern?
This gentleman will pay for everything Þes wer abygþ eall.
This lady will pay for everything Þes wif abygþ eall.
Would you like to dance with me? Wolde þū mid mē fricigan?
I miss you Iċ gewilnige þē
I love you Iċ lufie þē
Get well soon Hǣl hraþe!
Go away! Gā aweg!
Leave me alone! Forlǣte mec!
Help! Help (þū)!r
Helpaþ (ge!)
Fire! Fȳr!
Stop! Ablinn!
Call the police! Cīg þǣm weardum!
Christmas greetings Gōd Gēol sīe þē!
Gōd Crīstes mæsse sīe þē!
New Year greetings Gōd nīewe gēar cume þē!
Easter greetings Ēasterdæg sīe þē!
Birthday greetings Gesǣlig Gebyrddæg
One language is never enough Ān geþēode nis nā genōh
My hovercraft is full of eels Mīn lyftcræft is ful ǣla


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