Please in different languages

Please in Different Languages

Discover 'Please' in 134 Languages: Dive into Translations, Hear Pronunciations, and Uncover Cultural Insights.

Updated on March 6, 2024

The word 'please' is a small but powerful part of our daily vocabulary. It is a polite request, a respectful way to ask for something without demanding it. This simple word holds great significance in many cultures, and its usage goes beyond just a linguistic necessity. It reflects good manners, etiquette, and social grace, making it a crucial component of communication.

Throughout history, 'please&' has been used to soften requests and foster positive social interactions. Its translation in different languages not only bridges the linguistic gap but also opens up a world of cultural understanding.

For instance, in Spanish, 'please' is 'por favor', in French it's 's'il vous plaît', while in German it's 'bitte'. Each of these translations carries the same weight and significance as the English 'please', reflecting the universal importance of politeness in communication.

Understanding the translation of 'please' in various languages can enrich your travel experiences, deepen your cross-cultural interactions, and broaden your linguistic horizons. So, let's explore the many ways to say 'please' in different languages.


Please in Sub-Saharan African Languages

The Afrikaans word "asseblief" is derived from the Dutch phrase "als het u belieft" (if it pleases you).
The word እባክህን is a conjunction of two verbs: እባ (to beg) and ክህን (to be kind, respectful).
Hausadon allah
"Don Allah" is derived from Arabic, translating roughly to "For the sake of Allah" and expressing both politeness and a sense of urgency.
The Igbo word "biko" is an abbreviation of the phrase "M biko nu", which means "I beg you" and is used to express politeness and respect.
Malagasymba miangavy re
The Malagasy phrase "mba miangavy re" is derived from the verb "miangavy" meaning "to ask for something politely" and the particle "re" which adds emphasis.
Nyanja (Chichewa)chonde
The word "Chonde" can also be used as an interjection, denoting pain, sadness, or disappointment, similar to "alas" or "woe."
The word "Ndapota" (please) in Shona is derived from the root "pota," which means "to give" or "to bestow."
The word "fadlan" can also mean "excuse me" or "thank you" in Somali.
Sesothoka kopo
The phrase "ka kopo" is also used in the context of requesting, rather than asking, such as "ka kopo o reke metsi" (request me to fetch water).
The word "tafadhali" can also mean "thank you" in a polite context.
The word 'ndiyacela' is a combination of the noun prefix 'ndi' and 'yacela', meaning 'to ask', and is specifically used for polite requests or to express gratitude.
'Jowo' also means 'my darling' or 'my love', expressing affection or endearment.
Ngiyacela's root, cela, means "beg" but it can also mean "request" or "ask for".
Twi (Akan)mesrɛ wo

Please in North African & Middle Eastern Languages

The word "رجاء" (رجاء) in Arabic can also mean "hope".
The word "אנא" in Hebrew can also be an interjection meaning "oh" or "alas"
Pashtoمهرباني وکړه
The word "رجاء" (رجاء) in Arabic can also mean "hope".

Please in Western European Languages

Albanianju lutem
The Albanian word 'ju lutem' is cognate with Latin 'placeo', meaning both 'I am pleasing' and 'it pleases me', and with Ancient Greek 'helúskomai', meaning 'I am pleased'.
The word "mesedez" also translates to "I would like" and "mercy."
Catalansi us plau
'Si us plau' comes from Latin 'si vobis placet' or 'if it pleases to you'.
"Molim" in Croatian can also mean "I pray" or "I beg", deriving from the verb "moliti" (to pray).
Danishvær venlig
The Danish phrase "Vær venlig" can also be used to express politeness or make a request, similar to the English "Be so kind".
The word "alstublieft" comes from the phrase "al is u het belieft", meaning "if it pleases you".
The original meaning of "please" in Middle English was "to please" someone.
Frenchs'il vous plaît
"S'il vous plaît" comes from the old French phrase "se il vous plaît", which means "if it pleases you."
The word "asjebleaft" derives from the Old Frisian phrase "asega bliuet", meaning "may it be left to you"
Galicianpor favor
"Por favor" comes from the Latin "pro" (for) + "favorem" (favor), meaning "to ask for a favor".
"Bitte" comes from the Old High German word "bitten" or "bitte," which also meant "prayer, petition, request".
The word "takk" in Icelandic also means "thanks".
Irishle do thoil
The Irish phrase 'le do thoil' ('please') translates as 'with your permission'.
Italianper favore
Derived from the Latin phrase "per favorem", meaning "by favor", "per favore" literally translates to "by the favor" or "by the kindness".
Luxembourgishwann ech glift
Maltesejekk jogħġbok
The Maltese word "jekk jogħġbok" comes from the Arabic "jayf al-ḥaq," meaning "granting of the right."
Norwegianvær så snill
In Swedish, "varsågod" means "you're welcome".
Portuguese (Portugal, Brazil)por favor
The Portuguese word "por favor" is derived from the Latin "pro favore" meaning "for a favor".
Scots Gaelicmas e do thoil e
The phrase literally means "it is from the will".
Spanishpor favor
"Por favor" is a term derived from medieval Latin that used to literally mean "for favor".
Swedishsnälla du
The Swedish phrase "snälla du" comes from a medieval phrase that meant "I ask you kindly".
Welshos gwelwch yn dda

Please in Eastern European Languages

Belarusianкалі ласка
The etymology is obscure, though some scholars have connected it to an older Baltic word meaning "I beg for" or "I entreat."
Bosnianmolim te
"Molim te" is a phrase in the Slavic language Bosnian that directly translates to "I beg you".
Bulgarianмоля те
"Моля те" is a Bulgarian phrase that can mean "please" or "I beg you."
"Prosím" is a Slavic word common to most Slavic languages (the most similar variant would be "prosić" in Polish), deriving in Proto-Slavic from the phrase "prositi sę", or "to ask with". This phrase was used to ask with an element of a gesture that is no longer in use today: prostration.
The Estonian word "palun" is also used to express thanks, and its etymology is connected to the greeting "head bow."
Finnishole kiltti
In the context of folk songs, "ole hyvä" may mean "thank you" rather than "please."
Etymology: from Turkish **lütfen** "please" (the regular Turkish word for "please" is rica ederim); possibly assimilated from German "bitte" "please."
The word "lūdzu" also means "you're welcome" or "thank you" in Latvian.
Prašau is thought to derive from a verb meaning “to ask” and is also used to answer “thank you”.
Macedonianте молам
The word "те молам" (please) in Macedonian can also mean "I beg you" or "I implore you".
In addition to its use as a polite request, "proszę" can also be used as an interjection expressing surprise, gratitude, or sympathy.
Romanianvă rog
The Romanian word "Vă rog" derives from the Slavic word "prositi", meaning "to beg" or "to ask", and originally carried a more formal and respectful tone compared to its modern usage.
"Пожалуйста" can also mean "do not hesitate" in a context of an invitation.
Serbianмолимо вас
The word "Молимо вас" originated from the Old Church Slavonic "молити", meaning "to pray" or "to ask for". Thus, it can also carry the connotation of "for God's sake" or "I implore you".
In Czech, "prosím" can also mean "I beg", while in Polish it means "I ask".
Prosim can be used both as a request of a favour, as well as "you're welcome" when responding to a thank you.
Ukrainianбудь ласка
"Будь ласка" - an obsolete form of the word "будьте ласкаві" (be kind)

Please in South Asian Languages

The word 'অনুগ্রহ' ('please') comes from the Sanskrit word 'अनुग्रह', which means 'favour' or 'grace'.
Gujaratiકૃપા કરીને
The word 'कृपया' in Hindi is derived from the Sanskrit word 'कृपया' meaning 'kindly' or 'favourably'.
ದಯವಿಟ್ಟು" ("please") is derived from the Sanskrit word "कृपया" ("kindly"), which is also used in other Indian languages like Hindi and Marathi.
कृपया can also be used as an interjection of disbelief, surprise, or anger, much like the word 'well' in English.
The word "कृपया" in Nepali comes from the Sanskrit word "kṛpayā" meaning "out of kindness or favor."
Punjabiਕ੍ਰਿਪਾ ਕਰਕੇ
In Hindi, the word "kripaa kur kay" comes from Sanskrit, where "kripaa" means "mercy" and "kur kay" means "do" or "perform".
Sinhala (Sinhalese)කරුණාකර
Tamilதயவு செய்து
The word "தயவு செய்து" (please) in Tamil can also mean "out of kindness" or "with compassion".
The word "దయచేసి" in Telugu can also refer to kindness or mercy.
Urduبرائے مہربانی

Please in East Asian Languages

Chinese (Simplified)
"请" (Simplified Chinese) can also mean "invite" or "request".
Chinese (Traditional)
"請" (Traditional Chinese) originally meant "to invite" but today is commonly used as a polite request.
お願い (onegāi) can also mean "request," "entreaty," or "favor."
The Korean word '부디' can also be used to express hope or desire.
The word "гуйя" can also refer to a respectful form of address, similar to the Japanese "-san" suffix.
Myanmar (Burmese)ကျေးဇူးပြု
Literally meaning “to do merit,” the Burmese word for "please" carries a sense of humility and obligation.

Please in South East Asian Languages

The Indonesian word 'silahkan' is derived from the Arabic word 'silat' meaning 'connection', indicating a gesture of invitation or permission.
"Tulung" derives from the Sanskrit word "tulya" meaning "equal," denoting a sense of mutual respect and humility in the request.
The word "សូម" can also mean "to ask for" or "to beg."
The word "ກະລຸນາ" is derived from the Pali word "karuna", which means "compassion". It can also be used to express a request or a favor.
"Tolonglah" originated from the Malay term "tolong" which means "help".
The Thai word "กรุณา" (please) derives from Sanskrit and Pali, where it means "to show kindness" or "to have compassion."
Vietnamesexin vui lòng
Xin vui lòng ('please') is a polite phrase that directly translates to 'I beg you to please'
Filipino (Tagalog)pakiusap

Please in Central Asian Languages

Azerbaijanixahiş edirəm
Historically "xahiş edirəm" was a form of "xahiş" meaning petition, plea which is still an alternate usage; also in the form of polite command.
The word "өтінемін" is derived from the Proto-Turkic verb "*ütüŋ- "to ask, beg", and is related to the Mongolian word "өтини" meaning "to beg, beseech".
The word өтүнөмүн, meaning "please" in Kyrgyz, originates from the verb өтүн- "to ask" in the imperative mood and the suffix -мүн, which expresses politeness.
"Lutfan" can also be used to express "for God's sake" in a plea to another person.
Turkmenhaýyş edýärin
The word "Iltimos" in Uzbek is derived from the Persian word "iltemas," meaning "request" or "petition."

Please in Pacific Languages

Hawaiiane 'oluʻolu
"E 'olu'olu" can also mean "gently" or "carefully" in Hawaiian.
Maoritēnā koa
The word "tēnā koa" carries multiple meanings and is derived from two components: "tēnā," which can mean "hello" or "greetings," and "koa," which refers to a state of being "pleased" or "agreeable."
Faʻamolemole also means 'to soften' or 'to make pliable or smooth', a metaphorical sense derived from the physical act of softening an object.
Tagalog (Filipino)pakiusap
"Pakiusap" derives from "paki" (request) and "usap" (conversation, talk), emphasizing a polite request through a conversation.

Please in American Indigenous Languages

Aymaraamp suma

Please in International Languages

The word "bonvolu" in Esperanto comes from the French "bon" ("good") and "volu" ("will") and literally means "be of good will".
The Latin word "obsecro" may also mean "to entreat" or "to beg".

Please in Others Languages

Greekσας παρακαλούμε
The word "σας παρακαλούμε" is derived from the Greek verb "παρακαλέω" which means "to call upon, to implore, to beseech". It can also be used as a noun meaning "a request, a prayer".
The Hmong word "thov" also means "to request" and "to beg".
Kurdishji kerema xwe ve
The word "ji kerema xwe ve" is derived from the Persian phrase "ji karam Khuda," meaning "in the name of God's kindness."
The word
The word 'ndiyacela' is a combination of the noun prefix 'ndi' and 'yacela', meaning 'to ask', and is specifically used for polite requests or to express gratitude.
The Yiddish word "ביטע" is derived from the Low German word "bede","beeden" meaning "to ask" or "to pray".
Ngiyacela's root, cela, means "beg" but it can also mean "request" or "ask for".
Assameseঅনুগ্ৰহ কৰি
Aymaraamp suma
Dogriकिरपा करियै
Filipino (Tagalog)pakiusap
Kurdish (Sorani)تکایە
Meiteilon (Manipuri)ꯆꯥꯟꯕꯤꯗꯨꯅꯥ
Odia (Oriya)ଦୟାକରି
Quechuaama hina

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