How to Say Happy Passover in Hebrew

The spring festival of Passover commemorates the emancipation of the ancient Israelites from slavery. The celebration is a joyous occasion in the Jewish religion.[1] If you have Jewish friends or family, you can impress them and earn a reputation as a real mensch by learning to say "Happy Passover" in the Hebrew language.
[Edit]Steps [Edit]Saying "Happy Passover" Say "Sameach" for "happy." In Hebrew, the idea of happiness is expressed with the word "Simcha." To say "happy" as an adjective, we use "sameach," which is derived from the noun. This word is pronounced "sah-MEY-akh." Use a hard "k" sound with a raspy quality from the back of the throat. Don't use an English "ch" sound.[2] Use "Pesach" for "Passover." This is the traditional Hebrew name for the holiday. "Pesach" is pronounced "PAY-sock." It's pronounced almost exactly like these two English words. Again, end the word with a hard, raspy "kh" sound, not a "ch" sound. Flip the order of the words. In Hebrew phrases, the words in a sentence aren't always in the same order that they are in English.[3] In this case, the adjective comes after the noun, so "Happy Passover" is actually "Pesach Sameach". To pronounce the whole phrase, just put the pronunciations above together: "PAY-sock sah-MEY-akh." Congratulate yourself for learning a new Hebrew phrase! [Edit]Other Things to Say Optionally, put "chag" at the start of "Pesach sameach." "Chag" is the traditional Hebrew word for "festival" from scripture.[4] Saying "chag Pesach sameach" is basically like saying, "Happy Passover Festival!" This isn't really any better or worse than the basic phrase above — just different. "Chag" is pronounced "KHAHG." It's similar to the English word "cog," with the same breathy, raspy sound described above used for the c. Some sources suggest that "chag" is used especially by Sephardic Jews.[5] Drop "Pesach" for "Chag Sameach." Literally, this means "Happy festival." It's a little like saying "Happy holidays" in English. You can use this for most Jewish holidays, but it's best of all for Passover, Sukkot, and Shavu'ot, which are technically the only religious festivals.[6] Chanukah and other days of celebration are technically holidays. Use "Chag kasher v'sameach" to impress. This is a somewhat fancy way of wishing someone a happy holiday. The rough meaning is, "Have a happy and kosher holiday." Here, you're referencing the Jewish concept of Kashrut (religious dietary laws). This phrase is pronounced "KHAGH kah-SHEHR vuh-sah-MEY-akh." "Chag" and "sameach" are pronounced the same as above. "Kasher" uses a light r sound pronounced at the very back of the mouth — almost like a French r. Don't forget to add a very quick v sound before "sameach." Try "Chag Kashruth Pesach" for a Passover-specific greeting. The meaning here is similar to the phrase above: "Have a happy kosher Passover." The difference is that this phrase specifically mentions Passover, while the one above is used for many holidays. You can pronounce "kashruth" as "kash-ROOT" or "kash-RUTH" — both are acceptable.[7] In either case, use the tip of your tongue to make a light r sound. This is quite similar to the Spanish r sound. Use "Happy Pesach" if you want to cheat. Can't handle the tricky Hebrew pronunciations in this article? Try this "Henglish" alternative. Though it's not exactly a traditional holiday greeting, many English-speaking Jews use this as a convenient "shortcut" during Passover. [Edit]Video [Edit]Tips The breathy "kh" sound used in these phrases can be especially tough for English speakers to manage. Try these pronunciation examples to hear native Hebrew speakers use it.[8] This page has an audio clip of "kasher" which illustrates the difficult r sound at the end of the word.[9] [Edit]Related wikiHows Speak Hebrew Learn Fluent Hebrew [Edit]References ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑