Custom – Turkish

Çok Ya?a

A lot live

Live Long


Sen De Gör

(and I hope that) you see it

You too

Hep Beraber

All together

Güzel Ya?ay?n

Nice living

(may you) live beautifully

When someone sneezes in Turkey a common response is Çok Ya?a.  There are several responses you can say.  Sen De Gör is the most commonly.  Hep Beraber is also very common and considered very polite.  Güzel Ya?ay?n is used the least.

Robert’s main residence it the United States, but he has spent much of his life in Turkey.  This is also where the majority of his family resides.  These phrases are interesting because to understanding the words you only need to know the Turkish language.  But, in order to understand the actual meaning and appropriate time to use them, you must know something about the Turkish culture.  This is a way of separating the identities of those who simply know the language and those who are actually familiar with the culture.

The initial response to a sneeze it very similar to the response you would say in America, “Bless you”.  In either case you are wishing someone well.  I do not know where the concept of wishing someone well after they sneeze came from, but it is interesting that it is the same across two different cultures.  The first response is exactly the same as that is America, “You too”.  The second response is sort of odd, “all together”.  I assume by saying all together, they mean let us all live long together, which essentially is a more formal and indirect way of saying you too.  The final response is also slightly odd to me, but I think I understand it as well.  The first person is wishing you to live a long life.  So, in response, you are wishing them to live a beautiful life.

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