Getting the translation of your documents right can be very tricky. The Greek language is spoken as the official language in Greece and the co-official language in Cyprus (together with Turkish in the North) and in Italy (alongside Italian). Hence there are a few differences depending on where your translation is intended for use.
Our Greek language translators are professional, qualified and accredited linguists who can deliver your translation in Standard and Cypriot Greek, and the Greek dialects of parts of where it is spoken in Italy.
Greece, Cyprus (with Turkish), parts of south Italy, Salento (Grecia Salentina, together with Italian), Calabria (Bovesia, together with Italian).
For your free country guide to Cyprus click here
CYPRUS: Historical overview: the third largest island in the Mediterranean and the eastern limit of the European Union, Cyprus lies close to Syria, Turkey, the Lebanon and Egypt. This important location and valuable resources of timber and metals attracted Greek settlers three thousand years ago. Copper, used in the manufacture of bronze, gets its name from Kypros – the Greek name for the island. Early wealth brought successive waves of invaders and Cyprus has been ruled by Romans, Franks, Venetians, Ottomans and by Britain in the 20th century. Cyprus finally gained its independence in 1960 with the Greek language, culture and Orthodox Church still the
dominant influence, although the north of the island has been partitioned since the 1974 Turkish invasion. Today, 800,000 people live in Cyprus, with 209,000 living in the capital, Nicosia. Around the same number of Greek Cypriots live in London.
Environment: this lovely island with its sunny beaches, cool pine-clad mountains, tranquil timeless villages and beautiful Byzantine churches attracts visitors from all over Europe. Cyprus has many species, particularly plants, which are found nowhere else in the world. Griffon vultures, foxes, fruit-eating bats, sea turtles and moufflon, a wild sheep endemic to Cyprus, can all be seen.
Did you know..? For over 50 years a rail system existed in Cyprus, with trains linking the western port of Karavostasi and the main port of Famagusta in the east. The importance of
freight eventually outweighed that of passengers and the last train left Lefkosia for Famagusta on 31 December 1951, marking the end of the steam era in Cyprus. Pop star George Michael is of Greek-Cypriot origin. He was born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou on 25 June 1963. Richard the Lionheart, the famous crusader, spent his honeymoon in Cyprus in 1192 after marrying Berengaria of Navarre in Limassol.
Cultured: the Cypriots are well educated and tend to be cosmopolitan and hardworking, yet fun-loving, too.
Friendly: you will feel the friendliness almost instantly when you arrive in Cyprus.
Religion: 78% of Cypriots are Greek Orthodox; 18% are Muslim; Maronite, Armenian Apostolic and Christian together make up the remaining 4%.
Cultural heritage: Cypriots are very proud of their cultural heritage, which stretches back more than 9,000 years. Relics from every era can be seen, from Greek temples and Roman mosaics to 15th century frescoes. Many villages specialise in a particular art form and as you travel around Cyprus, you will come across pottery, silver and copperware, basket weaving, tapestry and Lefkara’s famous lacework. Crusader castles rub shoulders with ancient vineyards, frescoed monasteries overlook citrus orchards, and sandy, sun-soaked feet tread Roman mosaic floors.
Business culture and etiquette
Be punctual: arrive for business appointments promptly at the time specified.
Meetings: a brief but firm handshake is the accepted custom at the start and end of a meeting. If you have to leave in the middle of the meeting, leave with a handshake. Note that refusing an offer to drink Greek coffee is considered impolite.
Dress code: Cypriot dress is casual. Nevertheless, be careful to dress properly for a business meeting. For men – a suit and tie. For women – dignified dress. Remain in this dress even if the weather on the island is relatively warm, and don’t remove a jacket or tie before your colleague does so.
Gifts: acceptable gifts for business meetings are items for the office or quality pens (including pens with your company logo). On receiving an invitation to a home, chocolates or flowers are a welcome gift.
Holidays: try to avoid business meetings in the months of July and August or around the times of national holidays.
Language: Official language: Greek English: the vast majority of business people have a good command of English.
Basic Greek phrases The positive impression you will make by learning to speak a few basic Greek phrases cannot be overestimated. Below are some commonly-used phrases – if you are interested in learning the Greek language, you can search for qualityassured trainers and courses at www.expertlanguages.com
Hello Γεıά σας (Ya-sas)
Good day/morning Kαλημέρα (Kalimera)
Good evening Καλησπέρα (Kalispera)
Goodbye Αντίο (Adio)
Yes / no Ναı / Οχι (ne/ ohi)
Please Пαρακαλώ (Parakalo)
Thank you Ευχαριστώ (Efharisto)
Excuse me Мε συγχωρείτε (May sinhoritay)
My name is… Мε λένε… (May le-ne…)
What’s your name? Пώς σας λένε (Pos sas le-ne?)
Tips for effective communication
1. Be clear and concise. Less is more: use, short, simple sentences. Use active rather than passive voice. Don’t use idioms, irony, jargon or dialect expressions.
2. Speak more slowly. Communicate your message in bite-size chunks, and pause regularly but maintain the natural rhythm and stress pattern.
3. Reinforce your message. Maintain eye contact so your listener benefits from facial expression and lip movement. Help your audience understand by getting LOUDER on key words and using intonation to communicate meaning. Make clear, direct statements. ‘Triangulate’ your ideas: repeat them three times in slightly different ways.
4. Make presentations effective. Adapt your message to the audience in advance. Use appropriate graphics and handouts to enhance communications. Send through materials in advance, if possible. Signpost your main points and summarise at the end.
5. Double-check understanding. Yours and theirs! Jot down names, numbers and technicalities. Ask your audience to repeat key points or arrangements back to you.