Passover seder:

Judeo-Greek in Ioannina, Greece: chova (duty)

Judeo-Arabic in Mossul, Iraq: fassaḥ (verb- conduct the seder)

Yiddish in Lvov/Lemburg, Ukraine: praven/uprichtn dem sayder, saydern (verb- conduct the seder)

(The evening of) searching for and getting rid of chametz:

Yiddish in Bialystok, Poland: di nacht tsi chumets batlen (the night to void chametz); boydek chumets zaan (search for chametz [to be])

Haketía in Tetuan, Morocco: dechamezzar (de-chametz - infinitive verb)

Ladino in Salonica, Greece: des·hamesar (de-chametz), badkamiento (search [badkar]-ing), día de kal hamirá (day of kal chamira - formula renouncing posession of chametz)

Judeo-Arabic in Bengazi, Libya: lilet qto‘ el-ḥamiṣ (night of stopping the chametz)

Judeo-Arabic in Ksar Es-Souk, Morocco: bdikt ḥamiṣ (searching for chametz – also used by women as a curse, meaning ‘may [the person being cursed] become extinct’)

Kosher for Passover food and utensils:

Western Yiddish in Amrichshausen, Germany: yontefdig

Yiddish in Warsaw, Poland: paysechdik

Judeo-Georgian in Tbilisi, Georgia: kasheria pesaxistvin

Jewish Malayalam in Chennamangalam, India: pesaholle sadhangle

Judeo-Arabic in Sana‘a, Yemen: altavaqa almufatra (kashered room for preparing/storing Passover grains)


Jews in most communities use variants of מצה, but here are some additional names for Passover unleavened bread:

Judeo-Tat/Juhuri in Derbent, Dagestan: qoqol

Judeo-Provençal in Comtat Venaissin, France: coudolo

Ladino in Salonika, Greece: sensenya

Judeo-Arabic in Baghdad, Iraq: jərduqayi

Judeo-Arabic in Cairo, Egypt: faṭīr

Judeo-Arabic in Ḥugariyyah, Yemen: mašummōr


Jewish Neo-Aramaic in Zakho, Iraq: ‘ez moshe, qazele mnoshe (Holiday of Moses, He provides Himself [God helps needy people celebrate Passover])

Yiddish in Vilna, Lithuania: Matses un vayn muz zayn, shmalts un eyer – nit zeyer (matzah and wine are a must, chicken fat and eggs – not so much)


In Judeo-Italian, shefok can mean “to vomit,” based on shefoch chamatcha (pour out your wrath) from the seder.

In Ladino the high costs of the holiday are summarized by interpreting Pésah as an acronym for Parás sin hazbón – Money [expenditures] without [keeping an] account.

Some Jews in Arabic-speaking lands avoid eating chickpeas on Passover, even though they eat other kitniyot. One explanation is that hummus (chickpea) and hametz (leavened products forbidden on Passover) sound very similar in Arabic.

haggadah Section: Introduction
Source: Jewish Language Project Passover Supplement