The Meaning of Meraki

20 Oct

According to an article at NPR called Translating the Untranslatable, which is all about the book In Other Words: A Language Lover’s Guide to the Most Intriguing Words Around the World, there is a word in Greek that I want to be able to apply to everything I do:

meraki [may-rah-kee] (adjective)

This is a word that modern Greeks often use to describe doing something with soul, creativity, or love — when you put “something of yourself” into what you’re doing, whatever it may be. Meraki is often used to describe cooking or preparing a meal, but it can also mean arranging a room, choosing decorations, or setting an elegant table.


2 Responses to “The Meaning of Meraki”

  1. Susan from Athens October 20, 2010 at 3:33 pm #

    It is a word, like *kefi* which is hard to describe, but often used. It means doing something with energy and enthusiasm. As you said, putting something of yourself and your creativity into what you’re doing.

    • agreyeyedgirl October 22, 2010 at 5:16 am #

      I think it’s wonderful–I can’t think of a single-word English equivalent, only phrases (like ‘doing something with heart’ or ‘doing something with soul’ and such). English is lovely and all, but sometimes other languages seem so much richer!

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