Toasting around the World

toastAs I mentioned in my earlier blog, champagne was traditionally served at the Coronations of French kings. It has historically been associated with christenings, new beginnings, and rare moments including New Year’s Eve festivities around the world for this reason. We can thank the Ancient Greeks for introducing the art of toasting to one’s health. In Greek culture, the host took the first sip of communal wine to assure guests that it was not poisoned. Ever wondered why some people clink glasses together when toasting? In early Christian times people believed that the devil entered the body when people swallowed alcohol but would be deterred by bells chiming. So, in order to ward off the devil, guests would clink their glasses together in order to make a bell-like sound. Today, guests are encouraged to avoid clinking glasses with every guest present, with is cumbersome and distracting. Smiling and making eye contact is a gracious way to toast.

The word “toast” originated from the Roman practice of placing a piece of spiced, charred bread in the wine to mellow the flavor. When drinking to someone’s health, the cup was always drained to get to the piece of saturated toast at the bottom.

International New Year Toasts: Worldwide, many cultures toast in one form or another. ‘Happy New Year’ is one of the most common toasts made on New Year’s Eve. Globally, you may hear and speak Cheers for the New Year and Congratulations for the New Year in various languages as follows:

Language: Spelling or Pronunciation

  • Afrikaans S: Gelukkige Nuwejaar
  • Albanian S: Gezuar Vitin e Ri
  • Azerbaijani S: Yeni iliniz mubarek
  • Bahasa melayu S: Selamat tahun baru
  • Basque S: Urte berri on
  • Bengali S: Shuvo Noboborsho
  • Bosnian S: sretna nova godina
  • Catalan S: Felic any nou
  • Cebuano (Philippines) S: Mabungahong Bag-ong Tuig kaninyong tanan
  • Chinese P: Chu Shen Tan
  • Czech S: Stastny Novy Rok
  • Danish Godt Nytar
  • Dutch S: Gelukkig Nieuwjaar or Fijne oudejaarsavond
  • Esperanto Bonan Novjaron
  • Estonian S: Head uut aastat
  • Filipino S: Manigong Bagong Taon
  • Finnish S: Onnellista Uutta Vuotta
  • French S: Bonne annee
  • Gaelic (Scotland) S: Bliadhna mhath ur
  • German S: Frohes Neues Jahr / Gutes Neues Jahr
  • Greek P: kali chronya
  • Hawaiian S: Hauoli Makahiki hou
  • Hebrew P: Shana Tova
  • Hungarian S: Boldog Uj Evet/ Buek
  • Indonesian (Bahasa) Selamat Tahun Baru
  • Irish S: Athbhliain faoi mhaise dhuit /Bhliain nua sasta
  • Italian S: Felice Anno Nuovo or Buon anno
  • Japanese P: akemashite omedetou gozaimasu
  • Korean P: she heh bokmahn ee bahd euh sae yo
  • Laotian (Hmong) P: nyob zoo xyoo tshiab
  • Latin S: Felix sit annus novus
  • Maltese S: Is Sena it-Tajba
  • Maori S: Kia hari te tau hou
  • Nigerian (Hausa) S: Barka da sabuwar shekara
  • Norwegian S: Godt Nyttar
  • Polish S: Szczesliwego Nowego Roku
  • Portuguese S: Feliz Ano Novo
  • Romanian S: La Multi Ani
  • Russian P: s novim godom
  • Samoan S: la manuia le Tausaga Fou
  • Spanish S: Feliz Ano Nuevo
  • Swahili S: Nakutakaia Heri Ya Mwaka Mpya
  • Swedish S: Gott Nyttar
  • Thai P: saa-wat-dii pi-mai
  • Turkish S: Yeliniz Kutlu Olsun/ Mutlu yillar
  • Vietnamese P: Chuc mung nam moi
  • Urdu P: nyya saal mubarak
  • Welsh S: Blwyddyn newydd dda

Please help add to this list. In what language do you communicate “Happy New Year”?

Wish you all the best in 2015 and thank you for reading my blog!