Signing off

How do you end a letter? Or perhaps an email or message, in Esperanto?

Some common ways to end a letter are listed in “Being Colloquial in Esperanto”:

  • Elkore salutas
  • Samideane salutas
  • Salutas

The last one being more formal than the others. They all seem to be based around the verb “saluti” = “to greet/salut”. Definitions seem to include a feeling of respect being conveyed.

So it seems to imply you are giving respectful greetings, which are made more informal by the use of other words. Where “elkore” comes from “el” = “from, out of”, and “heart”. The “e” at the end marks the word as an adverb (so it’s describing the action that follows: the greeting). By “elkore salutas” you are giving heartfelt greetings.

“Samideane” comes from “sama” = “same”, “ideo” = “idea”, and the suffix “-an” which means “member of <root>”. Again, the “e” shows its an adverb describing the type of greeting. Literally, a “samideano” is a member of the same idea, a similar-thinker, a fellow of the same ideals. So “samideane” describes the greetings as from one who shares the same ideals/ideas/thoughts/perspectives (often said about a fellow Esperantist).

In forum posts I often see the usual goodbyes:

  • Ĝis revido (Until next time / bye)
  • Ĝis (shortened version) (It’s pronounced “jiss”)

By far my favourite so far is one I noticed from a member of the Lernu.net forums and that is:

  • amike = friendlily

It’s like saying everything above is in a friendly way (“friendlily”), since it is an adverb of “amiko” = “friend”. It could also being seen as short for “amike salutas”: giving greetings friendily.
I’m kind of disappointed to see that “Adiaŭ” = “farewell” seems only to be used when you aren’t going to see the person for a long time. Someone please tell me if this is not the case! It’s such a pretty word. Maybe if I use it enough as a simple goodbye, other people might too! (Or just make confused faces…)

Amike!

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4 thoughts on “Signing off

  1. I too like Adiaŭ. It reminds me of the Catalan for goodbye. I guess I would use Adiaŭ in more formal occasions as well the more permanent form of “see you”.

    BTW, The title of the post had me a little worried 😀

      • I guess you can say I had an accidental learning experience with Catalan. I was dating a Spanish chick from Barcelona and was staying with her for the summer. I was trying like crazy to learn Spanish and would listen intensely to her mother speaking (which she did a lot).
        One day, I was practising some Spanish with her friends and unknowingly broke out in Catalan. They were like, “WTF, why are you speaking Catalan!”. I was like, “I’m not, am I”?

        Catalan is a nice language, but I hear it has a complex grammar. Good luck 🙂

        • Hehe, a similar thing happened to me with Russian!

          I actually know barely anything about the grammar! I have learnt a lot of Spanish and French though, so maybe I’ll have a running start! 🙂

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