Hamburgers & Configuration: Foreign Words in Hebrew

Photo: Zipa Kempinsky

What’s לקנפג (lecanfeg) in Hebrew? What’s לסמס (lesames)? And what do we Israelis mean when we ask you to give us your ‘mail’?

Guy explains what happens to foreign words when they start feeling comfortable in their new Israeli home.

Ruben’s Pronunciation Course:


Listen to the All-Hebrew Version of this Episode


New Words and Expressions:

Homo’im – Gays – הומואים

Ha-homo’im ve-ha-lesbiot tsa’adu ha-yom be-tel aviv’ – The gays and lesbians marched today in Tel Aviv – ההומואים והלסביות צעדו היום בתל אביב

Hamburger, Hamburgerim – Hamburger, hamburgers – המבורגר, המבורגרים

Radiatorim – Radiators – רדיאטורים

Snob, Snobit, Snobim, Snobiyot – Snob – סנוב, סנובית, סנובים, סנוביות

Mail, mailim – E-mail, e-mails (also: E-mail address) – מייל, מיילים

“Im mishehu mishtalet lanu al ha-mail” – “If someone takes over our email” – אם מישהו משתלט לנו על המייל

“Hu yachol lehishtalet lanu al ha-hayim dei be-kalut” – “He can take control of our life quite easily” – הוא יכול להשתלט לנו על החיים די בקלות

Kuger, kugeriyot – Cougar, cougars – קוגר, קוגריות

Milfiyot – MILFs – מילפיות

Lecanfeg – To configure – לקנפג

Cinfug – Configuration – קנפוג

Leshadreg – To upgrade – לשדרג

״Wats’ep li ve-ered״ – Whatsapp me and I’ll come down – ווטסאפ לי וארד

Pableki – Make it public (F.)! – פבלקי

Sames li hoda’a – Send me a message – סמס לי הודעה

Lesames – To send a message on the cellular phone – לסמס

Simasti/Ani mesames lecha et ha-mispar – I sent/ I am sending you the number on sms. – סימסתי/אני מסמס לך את המספר

Histamasnu – We sent each other messages – הסתמסנו

Histamasnu kol ha-laila – We corresponded via messages all night – הסתמסנו כל הלילה

Shivuk, Marketing – Marketing – שיווק, מרקטינג


Playlist and Clips:

Paul Taylor – Stand up, Franglais


Mail, mailim

Kugeriyot ve-milfiyot

Eich lecanfeg router?

Erez Lev – Haim Be-toch Masach (lyrics)


Ha-tikva 6 – Ha-ivrit Ha-chadasha


Previous Episodes


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2 comments on “Hamburgers & Configuration: Foreign Words in Hebrew

  1. Shalom!
    I’m trying to recall the Hebrew I learned (I was quite fluent!) over 50 years ago in Israel, but have long since forgotten. This is soooo helpful! I’m slowly pulling out the hidden language from deep within my brain. I love your program and listen as often as possible. Just wanted to say thank you. Todah Rabah!

    1. Guy Sharett says:

      Toda raba, thanks for listening and for writing.

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