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How to say "Cheers" in other languages! Raise your glasses!

Updated on September 5, 2013

The Origin of Toasting

One of the oldest traditions of human beings is the toasting, or clinking glasses, while drinking alcohol. There is an old myth that this all started as a means to disprove that someone had poisoned your drink, when each other's beverage splashed into one another during the hitting of the glasses. This has been proven to not be true. In fact, the real history of doing a toast is not certainly known, but it seems most likely that it has always been what it is today: a custom to honor each other and wish good health and fortune upon them. The meaning behind it is to show unity with one another through individual glasses or cups, much like how back in the day it was common for people to all drink out of the same glass.


Why is it called "Toasting"?

The term "toasting" today, is known to be an act of acknowledging a certain person or cause in an honorable way, then is followed by swallowing some alcohol. In 16th century Europe, it was common for everyone in a room to drink out of one cup, called a "loving cup." Traditionally, there would be a piece of cooked bread floating in this cup, in which the host of the event would eat along with the last sip of beverage, usually wine. Centuries later, this is obviously a less common practice! The idea of everyone having their own glasses, and clinking them together is a symbolic way of putting the drink "all together" again, while honoring the host, or guest, or whoever.

Get ready to pub hop in foreign lands!

(click column header to sort results)
   
   
   
Afrikaans
Gesondheid
Ge-sund-hate
Albanian
Gëzuar
Geh-zoo-ah
Azerbaijani
Nuş olsun
Nush ohlsun
Bosnian
Živjeli
Zhee-vi-lee
Burmese
Aung myin par say
Au-ng my-in par say
Catalan
Salut
Sah-lut
Chinese (Mandarin)
gān bēi
Gan bay
Czech
Na zdravi
Naz-drah vi
Danish
Skål
Skoal
Dutch
Proost
Prohst
Filipino (Tagalog)
Mabuhay
Ma-boo-hay
Finnish
Kippis
Kip-piss
French
Santé
Sahn-tay
German
Prost
Prohst
Greek
ΥΓΕΙΑ
Yamas
Icelandic
Skál
Sk-owl
Irish
Sláinte
Slawn-Cha
Italian
Salute
Saw-lutay
Japanese
Kanpai
Kan-pie
Norwegian
Skål
Skawl
Polish
Na zdrowie
Naz-droh-vee-ay
Portuguese
Saúde
Saw-OO-de
Romanian
Noroc
No-Rock
Serbian
živeli
Zhee-ve-lee
Spanish
Salud
Sah-lud
Swedish
Skål
Skawl
Taiwanese
Ho Do La
Ho Do La
Vietnamese
Jou
Yiddish
Sei gesund
Say geh-sund
Time to clink glasses!

Some Traditional Irish Toasts

Let's face it, the Irish have mastered the art of toasting. Here are a few fun ones I stumbled upon for various occasion.

Irish Birthday Toasts

  • May you live to be 100 years, with one extra year to repent.
  • We drink to your coffin. May it be built from the wood of a hundred year old oak tree that I shall plant tomorrow
  • May God grant you many years to live, for sure he must be knowing, the earth has angels all too few and heaven is overflowing...
  • May you die in bed at 95, shot by a jealous spouse.

Irish Wedding Toasts

  • May the roof above you never fall in,
    And those gathered beneath it never fall out.
  • Here's to health, peace and prosperity. May the flower of love never be nipped by the frost of disappointment, nor shadow of grief fall among your family and friends.
  • May you be poor in misfortune, rich in blessings, slow to make enemies and quick to make friends. And may you know nothing but happiness from this day forward.

Every Day Irish Toasts...

  • May you be in heaven a full half hour
    before the devil knows your dead.
  • Always remember to forget
    The troubles that passed away.
    But never forget to remember
    The blessings that come each day
  • May neighbours respect you,
    Trouble neglect you,
    The angels protect you,
    And heaven accept you.
  • May you have all the happiness
    and luck that life can hold—
    And at the end of all your rainbows
    may you find a pot of gold.


Irish Toasts...to Drinking!

  • A bird with one wing can't fly. —said to encourage someone to take a second drink
  • Here's to a long life and a merry one.
    A quick death and an easy one.
    A pretty girl and an honest one.
    A cold pint-- and another one!
  • I drink to your health when I'm with you,
    I drink to your health when I'm alone,
    I drink to your health so often,
    I'm starting to worry about my own!
  • It is better to spend money like there's no tomorrow
    than to spend tonight like there's no money!

Comments

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    • profile image

      Sumiti 2 years ago

      I’m impressed bcuseae of the smashing themes referring to this good topic. You performed this as the freelance writers job service , thence, you did deserve the best grant for it, I thougt!

    • profile image

      Jazmin 3 years ago

      There is an app for the iPhone/iPad called Cheerslator which attempts to bring an audio dimension to this. Although they have fewer languages than this post, I really like the audio!

      I saw on Twitter that they're running a contest to get more languages. Perhaps some of the commenters here that have offered suggestions could also contribute audio to make that app better?

      www.facebook.com/oddcount

    • sasafl profile image

      sasa afl 3 years ago from Indonesia

      in indonesia "tenggak bro"

    • tastiger04 profile image
      Author

      tastiger04 4 years ago

      Thank you saltymick! Yes Irish Toasts always make me happy for some reason.....they seem to make the beer taste better ;-) Hope you enjoy a cold one tonight, Na Zdravi and Sláinte!

    • saltymick profile image

      saltymick 4 years ago

      Na Zdravi Tastiger,

      I particularly like your glossary of Irish toasts to be sure!

    • tastiger04 profile image
      Author

      tastiger04 4 years ago

      It is nice to hear from you, Say Yes To Life! I didn't notice it at the time, but you are right! It does sound like the German "Bless You", which is actually a phrase I use often....but I won't be the first one to try to spell it, lol. I am glad you enjoyed the hub, a world traveler like yourself may find it handy someday :) Likewise, cheers!

    • Say Yes To Life profile image

      Yoleen Lucas 4 years ago from Big Island of Hawaii

      The Afrikaans toast sounds like the German "Bless You" said when someone sneezes!

      Thanks for posting this great hub! I'll drink to that. Cheers!