ANDARTES – Resistance fighters in the mountains of Crete.
BOUREKI – a popular dish in cafenions, originally Turkish but now distinctively Cretan. Made from zucchini, potatoes, yoghurt, feta cheese and mint leaves, or some variation of that.
BRIKI: The long-handled metal pitcher used to make Greek coffee.
DIMARCHION – city hall. Office of the mayor or Dimarche.
DOZALI: a traditional Greek dance of five steps (alternate name Pentozali).
EIMAI TOU PANOU O YIOS. : I am Panos’s son.
EINAI KANENAS EKI?: Who is there?
EFCHELAIO: prayer of …
EPITRACHELION: a silk brocade stole worn by an Orhtodox priest during services.
FERRO DI PRUA: Iron comb at the top of the prow of a Venetian gondola.
GRAVIERA: A high-quality sheeps’ milk cheese made on the madares by the village men during the summer months. The name is related to Gruyere, but the cheese is its own perfection.
HITIA: a Cretan spell that makes shepherds’ dogs sleep for three days. Used by sheep thieves.
IKONOSTASIS: The screen of ikons that separates the public space of an Orthodox church from the sanctuary.
KAFENION: A café serving food and drink, emphasis on food. Cf. taverna.
KALIMAVKI: traditional hat worn by an Orthodox priest, a brimless stovepipe made of black felt? The metropolitan’s hat is taller than the parish priest’s hat.
KALIMERA: Good morning.
KALINIKTA: Good night.
KERASMA: the tradition of offering food or drink. One aspect of the hospitality of the Cretans.
KIPOS, plural: KIPOI: A small field, usually away from the village but in walking distance.
KOLLYVA: a dish of boiled wheat prepared for funerals.
KOUMBARA: an attendant at a cretan wedding.
KOURABIEDHEZ: almond cookies.
LAUTO: Cretan traditional musical instrument, a kind of lute, used to accompany the lyra.
LUPARA: sawed-off shotgun, used for hunting wolves??
LYRA: Cretan traditional musical instrument which looks like a violin but is played like a gamba, standing on the knees of a seated musician.
MADARES: upper pastures on the White Mountains, Lefka Ori, of western Crete. It’s a fragile ecosystem. Snow covered in winter, it must be lightly grazed only during the summer. (All of Crete is a fragile ecosystem, with limited rainfall and drought-tolerant plants. The seasons of use have been determined by millennia of grazing.)
MAKARIA: Meal of blessedness, to honor the resurrected life of the MAKARITI, the beloved deceased.
MALAKKA!: a very naughty word.
MANA MOU: Mother of mine
MANTINADA, plural: MANTINADES: rhyming couplets of fifteen syllables sung on many occasions. There are traditional verses and verses made up on the spot.
METROPOLITAN: in the Greek Orthodox church, the primate of an ecclesiastical province.
MITATOS, plural: MITATI: a circular hut of dry masonry with a conical roof, used on the madares for sheltering the cheese-making operations in the summertime.
O PRODOTIS: the traitor.
PALLIKARI – A resistance fighter against whoever is oppressing Crete at the time. (Venetians, Turks, Germans…Crete has had more than its share of oppressors.)
PANYGIRI: festival honoring a saint. For example, the celebration of the Dormition of the Virgin is held on August 15.
PARACLESIS: a ceremony of blessing.
PATERA: term of address to a priest.
PHILOXENIA: Love of strangers. The name for the Greek tradition of generous hospitality to visitors.
PLATIA: square in a village or city.
PROETHROS: elected head of a village too small to warrant a mayor.
PROSFORO: a special bread used in Divine Liturgy and other Orthodox services. ….
RHOPLEX AC33: a fixative used in the repair of wallpaintings.
SAKKOULA: a traditional bag of fabric, with a wide strap which can be worn over one shoulder or diagonally across the chest. They come in many colors and are available in tourist shops.
SARIKI: a black fringed square worn around the brow of a traditionally dressed Cretan man.
SAS EFHARISTO: Thank you.
SIGNOMI: I’m sorry.
SOYSTA: a wedding dance.
STEFANA: wedding wreaths of dried flowers, bound together by lengths of ribbon.
STIVANIA: leather boots, traditional to Cretan men's dress.
SYRTO: a traditional Cretan dance.
TAVLI: A game very like backgammon, played all over the Mediterranean.
TERRA ROSA: the red earth common in Western Crete.
THEN PIRAZI: Never mind.
THEOTOKOS: The name of the ikon representing Mary, the Holy Mother of God, holding the infant Christ.
TRISAYIO: a canticle, a prayer for the dead.
TSIKUDIA – an unbelievably potent liquor made from the left-over grape must from Cretan wine. People have been known to be unable to feel their feet after two tsikudias.
VRAKA: traditional baggy breeches worn by pallikari and other Cretan men.
XENI: Foreign. Other than us.
YA SAS: Hey there.
ZOURNADAKIA: a phyllo pastry with walnuts and almonds and honey and all good things.