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Useful phrases in Somali

A collection of useful phrases in Somali, an East Cushtic language spoken mainly in Somali, and also in Ethiopia, Djibouti and Kenya.

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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.

English af Soomaali (Somali)
Welcome Soo dhowow
Hello (General greeting) Salaam alaykum
Wa alaykum salaam (reply)
Iska warran
Alhamdulillah, waan iska fiicanahay (reply)
Waan fiicanahay (reply)
How are you? Ii warran (Tell me news)
Iska warran? (Talk about yourself)
Bal ka waran?
Sideed tahay?
Setahay?
Sideed tahay?
Nabad miyaa?
Ma nabad baa?
Maxaad sheegtay? (What did you tell?)
Reply to 'How are you?' Waan fiicanahay
Waa nabad
Nabad waaye/weeye (It is peace)
Long time no see Wakhti dheer kuma arag
What's your name? Magacaa?
Magacaagu muxuu yahay?
My name is ... Magacaygu waa ..
Where are you from? Xagee ayaad ka timid?
I'm from ... ... waxaan ka imid
Pleased to meet you Barasho wanaagsan
Waan ku farax sanahay la kulan kaaga
Good morning
(Morning greeting)
Subax wanaagsan
Good afternoon
(Afternoon greeting)
Galab wanaagsan
Good evening
(Evening greeting)
Fiid wanaagsan
Good night Habeen wanaagsan
Goodbye
(Parting phrases)
Nabadeey
Nabadgelyo
Good luck! Guul ayaan kuu rajaynayaa!
Cheers! Good Health!
(Toasts used when drinking)
Guul wanaagsan!
Guul caafimaad!
Have a nice day Maalin wanaagsan!
Bon appetit /
Have a nice meal
Ha kuu macaanaato
Bon voyage /
Have a good journey
Safar wanaagsan
Do you understand? Miyaad fahantay?
I understand Waan fahmay
I don't understand Maan fahmin
I don't know Ma aqaan
Please speak more slowly Tartiib u hadal
Please say that again Fadlan ku celi
Please write it down Fadlan qor
Do you speak English? Ingriis miyaad ku hadashaa?
Do you speak Somali? Af Soomaaliga maad ku hadashaa?
Yes, a little
(reply to 'Do you speak ...?')
Haah. Wax yar
How do you say ... in Somali? Maxaa af soomali lagu yiraahdaa ... ?
Excuse me Iga raali ahow
How much is this? Meeqo waaye?
Sorry Waan ka xumahay
Please Fadlan
Thank you Mahadsanid
Wad mahadsantahay
Reply to thank you Adigaa mudan
Adaa mudan
Where's the toilet / bathroom? Musqusha aawey?
This gentleman/lady will pay for everything Kani waa ikhyaar/marwada ayaa waxwalba bixinaysa
Would you like to dance with me? Ma ciyaaraysaa?
I miss you Waayadan kuma arag
I love you Waan ku jecelahay
Get well soon Aafiimad baan kuu rajeynayaa
(I wish you health)
Go away! Bax!
Leave me alone! Idaa!
Help! I caawi!
Fire! Dab!
Stop! Joogso!
Call the police! Booliiska soo wac!
Christmas greetings Kirismas wacan
Ciid Wanaagsan
New Year greetings Iyo sanad cusub oo fiican
Easter greetings Easter wanaagsan
Birthday greetings Dhalasho wanaagsan
Congratulations! Hambalyo!
One language is never enough Hal luuqad marna kuma filna
My hovercraft is full of eels Huufarkarafkayga waxaa ka buuxa eels

Translations and corrections provided by Christian Lerrahn, Abdisalam Farah and Lule Bille. Recordings by Adam Shaikh.

Note

The vast majority of Somalis are Muslims and do not celebrate Christmas or Easter, however there are a small number of Christian Somalis who do, so it is appropriate to include translations of Merry Christmas and Happy Easter here.

Download the audio files

Hear some Somali phrases:

If you would like to make any corrections or additions to this page, or if you can provide recordings, please contact me.

Somali words and phrases for doctors (PDF)

Information about Somali | Phrases | Numbers | Tower of Babel | Learning materials

Links

Other collections of Somali phrases
http://quizlet.com/63160/somali-useful-phrases-flash-cards/
http://ilanguages.org/somali_phrases.php
http://polymath.org/somali_phrases_list.php
http://learn101.org/somali_phrases.php
https://wikitravel.org/en/Somali_phrasebook

Phrases in Afroasiatic languages

Amharic, Arabic (Egyptian), Arabic (Lebanese), Arabic (Modern Standard), Arabic (Moroccan), Aramaic, Assyrian, Hausa, Hebrew, Maltese, Somali

Phrases in other languages


If you need to type in many different languages, the Q International Keyboard can help. It enables you to type almost any language that uses the Latin, Cyrillic or Greek alphabets, and is free.

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