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Hebrew EnglishHebrew Acronyms and Abbreviations in Daily Conversation.

Hebrew Acronyms and Abbreviations in Daily Conversation.

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Last Updated on November 21, 2021

Hebrew Acronyms & Abbreviations

Hebrew: קיצורים וראשי תיבות בעברית

slang acronyms

Hebrew is a colorful and poetic language.  Learning local Hebrew slang and jargon is an important part of your integration.  If you want to speak like an Israeli it’s useful to know common abbreviations and acronyms as well.  Sometimes Hebrew acronyms form new words. For example the Hebrew words for yellow cheese are “gvinah tzehuba” – the acronym in Hebrew is גבנ”צ and these letters then form a new word “GAVNATZ”.

Here are some of out all-time favorite Hebrew acronyms and abbreviations:

Full phrase  Acronym Transliteration Meaning
חברי כנסת ח”כים CHAKIM Havrei Knesset:  Members of the Knesset
סכין, כף ומזלג סכו”ם SAKUM Cutlery: knife, spoon and fork (in that specific order)
חמישי, שישי, שבת חמשו”ש HAMSHUSH Army slang: Thursday, Friday, Saturday weekend leave
חרדי לאומי חַרְדָּ”ל CHARDAL Charedi Leumi.  This is funny as the word for mustard in Hebrew is “Chardal”
 שק שינה סָקָ”שׁ SAKASH Sak Sheinah: Sleeping bag
חבל על הזמן חַבְלָ”ז HAVLAZ Chaval al hazman: wow, stunning or awful and also a waste of time
שֵׁירוּת ביטחון כללי שַׁבָּ”כּ SHABAK Israel Security Forces also known as the Shin Bet
חס וחלילה חו”ח CHUCH Chas Ve Chalilah: Heaven forbid
סוף סוף  סו”ס SUS Sof Sof: Finally.  This is funny as the word for horse is Hebrew is “Sus”
זו בעיה שלכם  זַבַּ”שְכֵּם ZABSHECHEM Zu B’aya shelachem: That’s your problem
גמר חתימה טובה  גמח”ט GAMACHT Gmar Hatima Tova! – Yom Kippur greeting – may you be inscribed
שינת צוהרים שנ״צ SHNATZ Sheinat Tzohorayim – afternoon sleep
לילה טוב לל”ט  LALAT Leilah Tov – good night
דרישת שלום  ד”ש DUSH Drishat shalom – greetings and regards (some might spell it DASH)
 צבא הגנה לישראל צה”ל TZAHAL Tzavah Hahaganah LeYisrael – the Israel Defense Force
לוח זמנים לוּ”ז LUZ Luach Zmanin – time schedule
קרוב לבית קַלַ”בּ KALAB Karov LeBayit – close to home
שבת שלום ש”ש SHINSHIN Shabat Shalom – a peaceful Sabbath
מוצאי שבת מוֹצָ”ש MOTZASH Motzei Shabbat – Saturday night after Shabbat

To illustrate, here is a conversation between two teenage friends; Talia and Hedva

H: “Hi Talia!”

T:  “So nice to hear from you Hedva, it’s been ages – Shanah Tova and GAMACHT”

H:  “Thanks and you too.  I’ve just woken up from my SHNATZ, I was exhausted.  I was out  buying presents today for the family.  I bought so many nice things and a new set of SAKUM for my parents. The ones we use now are so old fashioned.”

T:  “I also did some shopping today and bought a stunning red dress – CHAVLAZ!  I can’t wait to wear it next week.”

H:  “Have you heard Adina has a boyfriend SUS, can you believe it he is a CHARDAL.  I was so amazed to hear it, her family are just very traditional.”

T:  “I wasn’t so friendly with her at school but everyone used to say that her father was in the SHABAK.  I wonder if that is actually true.”

H: “So have you heard, I’m in TZAHAL now.  I’m posted in Beer Sheva.  It’s so far, I asked for KALAB but they refused me and so I have to be happy with my CHAMSHUSHIM (plural for CHAMSHUSH).  Well we are having elections again soon, I hope the new CHAKIM will do something to improve our conditions. I wish we had an air-conditioner. It’s so cold on our base that I have to sleep in my SAKASH all the time.”

T:  “I’d love to see you and catch up, how is your LUZ?  Let’s get together on MOTZASH, how does that suit you?”

H:  “That sounds great, I’ll pick you up at 21:00”

T:  “Can’t wait! It’s getting late now, I am going to bed.  Give DUSH to your family please.  LALAT.”

H: “LALAT and DUSH to yours as well.”

Thanks to all the members of our Facebook group that contributed to this article

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