The Greek culture’s long-standing attachment to all things erotic and sexual can be traced back to Ancient Greece, where sexuality was thought to be inseparable from the creation of the universe. Sexuality, sex, and love remain central to Greek identity even today and are prevalent themes in Greek advertisements, music, and even language. It may not be surprising, then, to learn that many of the dirtiest expressions in Greek have a heavy focus on sex, even when they have nothing at all to do with it! But Greeks aren’t only preoccupied with all things sex; they also have an apparent penchant for dirty bodily functions (and incredible Grecian villas) Freud would likely say that Greeks, and perhaps the Greek culture as a whole, have found themselves stuck in the early phases of psychosexual development — oral, anal, and phallic. Not sure what I mean?
Check out 18 of the dirtiest expressions in Greek below, and you’ll see why Greeks might be rendered sex-obsessed potty mouths.
1. Greeks don’t say that a place is crowded or busy; they say, “the whore is happening” (γίνετε της πουτάνας / yinete tis poutanas).
2. Greeks don’t say that they simply don’t care about something; they say, “I shat myself” (χέστηκα / hestika).
3. And they don’t say that something has annoyed them; they say, “it has made my balls swollen” (μου έπρηξε τ’αρχίδια / mou eprikse t’arxidia).
4. Greeks won’t tell you that they just don’t care; they say, “I write it on my balls” (στα αρχίδια μου / sta arxidia mou).
5. Or “I write it on my dick” (στο μπούτσο μου / sto boutso mou).
6. Greeks may not say “shit” or “damn” when they’re upset; they take it up a couple of notches and say, “I fuck my whore” (γαμώ τη πουτάνα μου / gamo ti poutana mou).
7. Greeks may not use very kind terms of endearment; they might call their friend a “jerk-off” to express affection (μαλάκα / malakia).
8. Greeks don’t say they turned a place inside out or upside down; they say, “we turned it into a brothel” (το καναμε μπουρδέλο / to kaname bourdelo).
9. Greeks won’t tell you that they messed up, or complicated a situation, or made a mess of something; they will tell you, “I fucked them” (τα γάμισα / ta gamisa).
10. A Greek won’t say he had sex with a girl; he will tell you, “I dropped her” (την έριξα / tin eriksa).
11. Greeks may not tell someone to fuck off when they’re angry; they may instead ask, “why don’t you fuck us?” (δεν μας γάμας; / den mas gamas?).
12. Greeks don’t simply say that they were cheated on; they say their partner “put horns on me” (με κεράτωσε / me keratose).
13. Greeks may not tell someone to get lost or to stop bullshitting; they may say, “why don’t you shit on us?” (δεν μας χέζεις; / den mas xezeis?).
14. Greeks won’t tell you that you’re overdoing it; they will tell you “you have over-shit them” (τα έχεις παραχέσει / ta exeis paraxesi).
15. A Greek does not simply say that you stood them up; they will say, “you fart on us” (μας κλάνεις / mas klaneis).
16. Another way a Greek may express being stood up by someone is to say that person “wrote me on their butt” (με έγραψε στον κώλο του / me egrapse ston kolo tou).
17. And they don’t say you’re being silly or foolish; they say, “shit in your face” (σκατά στα μουτρα σου / skata sta moutra sou).
18. And finally, if a Greek puts a full palm with five outstretched fingers toward the direction of your face, they are giving you the classic Greek moutza (μούτζα), AKA a big “fuck you.”
A version of this article was previously published on March 5, 2018, and was updated on August 30, 2021, with more information.