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The Plain English Meanings of
Turkish Idioms
'Z'

In Turkey - Türkiye'de

Tüm kitap fırsatları için tıklayın !

Related Pages:
  • The Turkish Idioms A-Z, Index
  • Turkish Acronyms/Abbreviations
  • The Idiomatic M-Doublets
  • Idioms Origin Stories, Index
  • Fearful that we might never finish
    a complete on-line book of
    The A to Z(ed) Meanings of Turkish Idioms
    in our lifetime
    (yikes, that's a lot of HTML code, folks!)
    we decided to cheat...
    and skip to the back of the pack.
    But we'll continue to add samplings from our
    print-edition
    for each of the letter groups,
    as time permits...

    I'm disappointed, Mabel.
    I was preparing to commit the whole damn thing to memory.
    You had that look in yer eye, Marv...

    color  bar

    Turkish Idioms beginning with the letter Z

    The Turkish

    The Literal English Meaning

    The 'Plain' English Meaning

    Comments and Examples

    Za
    zam gelmek

    (for a) price increase to occur
    1. (for a) price increase to occur... Note: Due to the high rate of Turkish inflation, price increases (in Turkish Lira) are a common occurrence on whole categories of products such as: drugs, oil and gasoline, and imported products of all kinds - any thing 'pegged' to the US Dollar or the Euro. Update 2003: reduced inflation this year has moderated some (though certainly not all) Turkish Lira price increases.
    2. for a salary increase to be earned
    Ekmeğe zam geldi!

    There's been an increase in the price of bread!

    zaman bırakmakto leave timeto set time aside (for sb/sth)Konuşmaya zaman bıraksaydın seni suçlamadığımı görürdün. If you'd given me time to speak, you'd have seen that I didn't accuse you.
    zaman kazanmak

    (Speaker from
    Turkey's southeast)

    to earn timeto save time, to gain timeKısa yoldan giderek zaman kazanabiliriz.

    (Speaker from
    Turkey's southeast)

    We can save time by going the shorter way.

    zaman kollamak to watch out for timeto be on the lookout for a suitable opportunity, to bide one's time.Zaman kollayıp uygun ortamın doğmasını bekleyeceksin. You should bide your time and wait for a better opportunity (...for the birth of a convenient environment).
    zaman öldürmek
    Also see vakit öldürmek.
    to kill timeto spend time on inconsequential things
  • Seni bilmem ama benim zaman öldürecek durumum yok. I don't know about you, but I'm in no position to just kill time.
  • Benimkisi zaman öldürmek, iş değil. This isn't work, I'm killing time.
  • (birisine) zaman vermekto give timeto set time aside for someone (for some purpose).
  • Eğer zaman verirseniz başaracaktır. He'll succeed if you'll give him time.
  • Sana burayı terketmen için bir dakikalık zaman veriyorum! I'm giving you one minute's time to get outta here!
  • zaman zaman

    (Speaker from
    Turkey's southeast)

    time timefrom time to time, occasionally
  • Ünlü İnternet sitesi DeansPlanet zaman zaman düzenlediği ilginç anketler ve yayınladığı fotoğraflarla ilgi çekiyor. Famous Internet website DeansPlanet attracts attention with the photos that it publishes and the interesting polls that it arranges from time to time. Gözcü Gazetesi, 11 September 2003
  • Bize gelir zaman zaman, eski günleri anarız.

    (Speaker from
    Turkey's southeast)

    He visits us now and then, we remind him of the old days.

  • zamanı geçmekto pass timeto be out of date, be outmoded (for something) to expire, become void (due to time passage) (for a fruit of vegetable) to no longer be in season. Bu ilacı kullanmamalısın. Zamanı geçmiş. You mustn't use this medicine. It has expired. (The expiry date has passed.)
    zamanlı zamansız

    with time without time (doing something) without considering whether it's suitable Zamanlı zamansız bana uğrar.

    He drops into see me, any old time he feels like it.

    zamkinos etmek/ çekmek
    (This idiom is quite colloquial -- not often seen.)
    to do/pull a 'thing-a-ma-jig'/ 'whatcha-ma-call-it'slang -- to run away, beat it, make tracks Adam polisi görünce zamkinos etti. When the man saw the police, he ran away.
    zamzum etmek

    (Speaker from
    Turkey's southeast)

    • to hem and haw, stammer
    • to talk nonsense
    same meaning Zam zum etmeyi bırak da doğruyu söyle.

    (Speaker from
    Turkey's southeast)

    Stop talking nonsense and tell the truth.

    zan altında bulmak/bırakmakto find/be left under suppositionto be under suspicion
  • Televizyonda adımı o hırsızın adıyla birlikte adınız ve beni zan altında bıraktınız. You mentioned my name together with that thief's name and you left me under suspicion.
  • Sözlerinizden dolayı zan altındayım. I am under suspicion because of what (the things) you said.
  • zangır zangır (titremek)

    (shaking) with a rattle, rattling violently, (sb's) shaking/tremblingsame meaning Zavallı kız! Kocaman köpeği aniden bahçede gördü ve şimdi korkudan zangır zangır titriyor.

    Poor girl! She saw the huge dog in the garden suddenly and she is trembling violently with fear now.

    zapartaya yemek
    (Rarely used.)
    • to get a dressing down
    • be scolded
    same meaning 
    zar atmak to throw membrane, to throw a dieto gamble  
    zar zorunwillingly, reluctantly with difficulty, forcibly, at the last minute sameOtobüse zar zor yetiştik. We made the bus (departure) with difficulty (at the last minute).
    zarar etmek to do damage
    • to lose money
    • make a wrong move
    • to damage, injure, harm
    Şirket zarar ediyor. The company is losing money.
    zarar gelmek (for) damage to come(for someone) to suffer at the hands of, to be wronged by, to be treated unjustlyAyşe iyi kızdır. Ondan zarar gelmez. Ayşe's a nice girl. She's not out to get anyone. (Damage will not come from Ayşe.)
    zarar görmekto see damageto be damaged/injured/harmed by (something or someone) to suffer loss Ev depremden zarar gördü. The house was damaged by the earthquake.
    zarar vermek to give damageto damage, injure, harmFırtına bahçedeki ağaçlara zarar verdi. The storm damaged the trees in the garden.
    zarara sokmakto cause (someone or place of business) to suffer loss/damagesame meaningOğlum arabamla kaza yaptı ve beni pek çok zarara soktu. My son had an accident with my car and cost me a 'bundle'.
    zararı dokunmak

    (Speaker from
    Turkey's southeast)

    to be touched by harm/damage to harm, be harmful to, have a harmful effect onBize yardım etmek için gelmişti ama, maalesef, çok zararı dokundu.

    (Speaker from
    Turkey's southeast)

    He had come here to help us but, unfortunately, he harmed us a lot.

    Zararı yok. There is no damage.It doesn't matter.
    Never mind.
    That's OK.
    Forget it.
    Ayşe: Ay! Çok özür dilerim. Dondurmayı kağıdın üstüne düşürdüm.
    Ali: Zararı yok. Başka bir kağıt kullanırım.

    Ayşe: Oh! I am very sorry. I've dropped the ice-cream on your paper.
    Ali: Never mind. I'll use another piece (of paper).
    zararına satmakto sell to damageto sell (something) at a loss İş değişikliği nedeniyle bütün malları zararına sattılar. Because of the change in business, they sold all the goods at a loss.
    zararlı çıkmak to go out with damageto come out a loserBenimle uğraşmayı bırak! Yoksa zararlı çıkacaksın. Stop picking on me! Or else you'll be sorry. (Or else you'll come out a loser.)
    zart zurt etmek

    to make blusterto blusterBırak bu zart zurt etmeyi, biz senin kim olduğunu bilmiyor muyuz?

    Leave off with that blustering, don't you think we know who you are?

    zarta atmak
    This is an off-color idiom.

    to throw fart, poop
    • to praise yourself in an exaggerated manner
    • to speak haughtily
    • to fart, poop, break wind
    Durmadan orda burda zarta atar durur ama korkağın biridir.

    He shows off continuously around these parts, but (in fact) he's a coward.

    zartayı çekmek
    This is an off-color idiom.
    to pull fart/poop
    • to fart, poop, break wind
    • coll. -- to die, kick the bucket
    Bela biriydi ama sonunda zartayı çekti. He was an evil one but he finally 'kicked the bucket'.
    zat işleri
    Also seen as
    özlük işleri.
    person worksmatters pertaining to personnel 
    zatı eşyaperson thingspersonal effects Zatı eşyanı bekleme odasında bırakma. Don't leave your personal effects in the waiting room.
    zayıf almakto take weakfor a student to get a failing gradeSınavdan önce daha sıkı çalışsaydın zayıf almazdın. You wouldn't have gotten such a lousy grade if you had studied harder before the exam.
    zayıf düşmekto fall weakto lose weight, get thin to get weakZavallı çocuk! Hastalıktan zayıf düştü. Poor child! He's been left weak by the disease.
    zayıf nahifweak gauntfrail and thinKapıyı açınca karşımda zayıf nahif bir çocuk gördüm. When I opened the door, I saw a child, frail and thin, in front of me.
    Ze
    zehabına kapılmak

    to be snatched to the mistaken belief to get the mistaken impression (that)Fadime'nin Ercan'ı sevdiği zehabına kapıldı.

    He got the mistaken idea that Fadime loved Ercan.

    zehir gibi

    like poison
  • very hot (spicy)
  • very bitter
  • sharp, biting
  • very clever
  • extremely "cool" or "hip"
  • Üff! Bu biber zehir gibi. Onu nasıl yiyebiliyorsun?!!!

    Uggh! This pepper is like poison (too spicy hot). How can you eat it?!!!

  • Maşallah, zehir gibi çocuk. Eminim çok başarılı olacak.

    May God preserve him from evil, he is a very clever child. I am sure he will be very successful. (Click here to see where we've addressed the Maşallah 'requirement' (for children) before...)

  • zehir zemberek (also zehir zakkum, zehir zıkkım)poison mainspring
    • very hurtful (words)
    • deep and rueful (sigh)
    • very bitter (tears)
    O akşam geç kalmıştı, babası öfkelenmiş, zehir zemberek sözler söylemişti ona. That evening he came home late, his father was angry and said some very hurtful words to him.
    Zehir zıkkım olsun!Let it be
    poison poison [sic]!
    May he/she/it/you choke to death on it!Beni bırakıp gitti. Onun için yaptığım kekler zehir zıkkım olsun! He left me and went away. May he choke to death on the cakes I made for him!
    zembereği boşalmakfor the mainspring to be emptiedto be seized by a fit of laughterBeni çamurun içinde görünce zembereği boşaldı. When he saw me in the mud, he was seized by a fit of laughter.
    zerre kadaruntil an atomthe least little bit, the slightest degree Benim ona zerre kadar güvenim yoktur, babasını bile aldatır. I don't trust her the least little bit, she even cheats her father.
    zeval vermekto give declineto harm, destroyUsually seen
    in sentences like:

    Allah devlete zeval vermesin. May god not allow the state to be destroyed.
    zevale yüz tutmakfor the face to hold to the declineto begin to declineİmparatorluğun zevale yüz tuttuğu açıkça görülüyordu. It was obvious (clearly seen) that the empire had begun to decline.
    zevkine bakmak
    (also, keyfine bakmak)
    to look at pleasureto enjoy oneselfBütün o problemleri unut da zevkine bak. Forget your troubles and just be happy!
    (Forget about all those problems and enjoy yourself.)
    zevkine gitmek
    Note: hoşuna gitmek is used more frequently.
    to go to pleasureto give someone pleasureGömlek hoşuma gitti. Onu satın alacağım.
    I like the shirt. I'll buy it.
    zevkine varmakto arrive to pleasureto discover pleasure (in a piece of music or art or other thing), to start to feel enjoyment (in something)Bu parçayı dinledikçe daha çok zevkine varıyordu şimdi... Now, each time he listens to the piece, he derives more pleasure [from it].
    zevkini bozmakto break pleasure to spoil (someone's) pleasure or fun, to prevent someone from enjoying (something) properly.Defol git! Zevkimizi bozma. Get out and don't spoil our fun.
    zevkini çıkarmakto extract pleasureto enjoy (sth) to the hiltSabahları erkenden kalkıyor, çevrede dolaşmaya çıkıyordu. Doğadaki dinginliğin, canlılığın zevkini çıkarıyordu bir başına. He would get up early in the morning and go out in the environment and wander about. And by himself, he'd get tremendous pleasure from the vigor and the passivity of nature.
    zevkini okşamakto caress pleasureto give someone pleasure Bu müzik her zaman zevkimi okşamıştır. This music has always given me pleasure.
    zevkten dört köşe olmakto have/be four corners from enjoymentto jump for joy, be overjoyed, be very happyBabası, ağabeyisine kızdıkça evin küçüğü zevkten dört köşe oluyordu. The little one of the house was overjoyed each time his father got angry with his older brother.

    Click here for the
    Rest of the Idiom Story!

    zeytinyağı gibi [üste] (suyun yüzüne) çıkmakto come out [in addition] like olive oil, to emerge (to the water's face) like olive oil(for a guilty person) to outwit accusers and come out smelling like a roseHer seferinde aynı şey, suçu kendi işler, kolayca kardeşinin üstüne yıkıp zeytinyağı gibi üste çıkardı. It's the same thing every time, he's the guilty one, but he dumps it on his brother and comes out smelling like a rose.
    zıddına basmak
    Also see
    zıt gitmek.
    to press oppositeto do exactly the opposite of what others want you doNote: "zıddına basmak" is rarely used. "zıt gitmek" has the same meaning and is used more frequently.
    zıddına gitmek
    Also see
    zıt gitmek.
    to go opposite(for something) to rile someone, to be too much (for someone) to take 
    zınk diye(stopping) with a sudden, noisy jolt; with a jolt same meaningZınk diye durdu.
    He stopped with a sudden jolt.
    zıp diye
    Similar to:
    pat diye; şıp diye.
    all of a sudden same meaningAdam zıp diye karşıma çıktı. All of a sudden, the guy appeared in front of me.
    zır zır
    Also seen as:
    zırzır.
    a sound that continues in an incessant, nerve-racking way
  • in an extreme way; extremely
  • in an incessant, nerve-racking way
  • "Bu padişah oğlu zır deli, hatta zır zır deli."99 "This sultan's son is quite mad, even more... he's extremely crazy."
    zırıl zırıl ağlamak
    Also seen as:
    zır zır ağlamak
    to cry incessantly and unpleasantly
  • to weep a flood of tears
  • to cry like a baby
  • Bütün gün zır zır ağlamaktan başka bir şey yapmadın. Besides incessantly weeping all day, you haven't done anything.
  • Zır zır ağlamayı bırak da git bir sonraki sınava daha iyi çalış. Stop crying like a baby and prepare yourself better for the next exam.
  • zırıl zırıl terlemekto sweat 'zırıl zırıl'to sweat bucketsHava o kadar sıcak ki millet zırıl zırıl terliyor. The weather is so hot that people are sweating buckets.
    zırnık (bile) vermemekto not (even) give arsenicto not give (even) the smallest valueless thing (to someone)Siz onun söylediklerine kanmayın, o ne bana, ne de öteki yeğenine zırnık bile vermez; sözünü eder sadece. Don't be fooled by what he says, he doesn't give even the slightest little thing to me or his other nephew; he just talks.
    Zırva tevil götürmez. It doesn't take nonsense, willful mis-understanding/ interpretation.It's no use trying to make sense out of a statement that is nonsense.May be used as shown...
    zıt gitmekto go oppositeto persist in doing the opposite of what others want you to doMüdürle sürekli zıt gidersen kovulursun. If you always disagree with the director, you'll be fired.
    zıvanadan çıkmakto go out of a short tube (called a 'zıvana') (for sb) to blow his stack, get in a towering rage, to go insaneBu kez de başarısız olursam, babam zıvanadan çıkar, bana yapmadığını bırakmaz. And if I don't succeed this time, my father will blow his top, he'll do everything in the book to me.
    Zi
    ziftlenmek to be caulked, to be pitchedto stuff one's face with food (said scornfully)'Ziftlenmek', yemek yemek anlamında, olumsuz yönde küfür yerine kullanılan argo bir deyimdir.115 'Ziftlenmek' is idiomatic slang that is used instead of a negative off-color term, to denote (excessive) eating.
    zihni açılmak(for) mental to be openedto feel mentally alertGeçen yıl böyle değildi, bu yıl zihni açıldı, sınıfın en iyi öğrencilerinden biri oldu. He wasn't like that last year, this year he became mentally alert, and he's become one of the best students in the class.
    zihni bulanmakfor mental to become muddyto get confused, get muddled upHep C vitamininin zararsız olduğunu düşünürdüm ama bilim adamlarının son açıklamaları zihnimi bulandırdı. I always thought vitamin C was harmless but recent statements of scientists have confused me.
    zihnini kurcalamakto try to pry open the mental (for something)to keep popping into one's mind; to think hard; try hard to remember or understand something
  • Bu soru nice geceler zihnimi kurcalayıp durmuştu.
    This problem pops into my head so many nights and stays there.
  • Zihni kurcalayan sorun, beni bütün gece uykusuz bıraktı. The problem that kept popping into his head, left him sleepless.
  • zil gibilike a bellcompletely drunk, looped, sousedHer gece içip eve zil gibi geliyorsun! You are drinking every night and coming home completely drunk.
    zil takıp oynamakto connect a bell and playto jump for joy, dance a jigHaber o kadar güzeldi ki zil takıp oynayacaktım neredeyse... The news was so good that I nearly jumped for joy...
    zilliği kırmak
    (a rarely used idiom...)
    to break the bell
    • to be rescued from poverty
    • to eat
     
    zilsiz oynamakto play without a bellto jump for joyO kadar neşeli ki zilsiz oynuyor. She is so happy that she is jumping for joy.
    zilzurna sarhoşblind drunk, plowed, completely drunksame meaningEve her cumartesi gecesi zilzurna sarhoş gelirdi. He used to come home plowed every Saturday night.
  • -e/-a zincir vurmak
  • -e/-a zincir vurulmak
  • to hit a chain
  • to be hit by a chain
  • to be enslaved, to be put in chainsNewspaper Headline:
    1 Nisan'da basına zincir vuruluyor!
    As of 1 April the press will be muzzled! The headline was in reference to the new Turkish Punishment Statute (Türk Ceza Kanunu) -- effective 1 April 2005. In the eyes of the press, the new law is undemocratic. The press feels that the new law will curtail its ability to criticise governments in power.
    Gözcü Gazetesi, 21 February 2005
    Zo
    zokaya gelmek/zokayı yutmakto swallow baitto fall for a trick, take the bait
  • Adam zokayı yuttu. Sonu yakındır. The man has fallen for the trick. His end is nigh.
  • Zokayı yutmayacak kadar akıllıyım. I'm smart enough not to take the bait.
  • zokayı yutturmakto make someone swallow baitto get someone else to fall for a trick, take the baitÇok uğraştılar ama zokayı yutturamadılar. They tried hard but they couldn't make him fall for their scam.
    zom olmakto be exceedingly drunksame meaningBen sen gibi değilim. Öyle iki bardak viskiyle zom olmam. I am not like you. I don't get that drunk on just two glasses of whiskey.
    zonk zonkused to intensify zonklamak (throb with pain)same Burnum zonk zonk zonkluyordu. My nose was throbbing like hell with pain.
    Zor alırsın/gidersin/yaparsın!You're going to have some trouble (doing that)! [often said tauntingly]same meaningSen o parayı benden zor alırsın. It'll be difficult for you to get that money from me.
    (You are going to take that money from me with difficulty.)
    zor belatrouble calamity
  • with great difficulty
  • just barely
  • Evi boyamayı zor bela bitirip hemen taşındı. He just barely finished painting the house and then moved in immediately.
    zor gelmekto come trouble(for something) to be difficult for (someone)Türkçe başlarda size biraz zor gelebilir ama farkına varınca düşündüğünüzden daha zordur! At first, you may find the Turkish language a little difficult -- but then you realize that it's harder than you thought!
    zor kullanmakto use troubleto use force Gerçeği söyletmek için zor kullanmak insanlıkla bağdaşır mıydı? Does humanity have to use force in order to speak the truth?
    zor zar
    See zar zor.
       
    zora gelmemekto not come to worryto not be able to stand stress/pressure/difficultyTembel herif! Hiç zora gelmezsin. Ancak domuzlar gibi yemeyi bilirsin. You lazy man! You can't stand any difficulty. But you sure know how to eat!
    (...eat like a pig!)
    zora koşmakto run to difficultyto make things difficult (for sb)Bizi zora koşmayın da yardımcı olun. Be a help and don't make things difficult for us.
    zoralıma çarpmak
    This idiom used infrequently.
    to hit seizureto confiscate, seize 
    Zorun ne?What is your difficulty/trouble?What's making you do...?Zorun ne ki beni öyle sorguya çekiyorsun? What's making you give me the third degree like this?
    zorunda bırakmakto leave in troubleto leave someone no choice but to do somethingKızım beni elli milyon lira ödemek zorunda bıraktı. I had no choice but to pay my daughter the fifty million lira.
    (My daughter left me no choice...)
    zorunda (olmak)(to be) in trouble
  • to have to
  • to be obliged to
  • a way of
    saying must
  • Yarın erken kalkmak zorundayım. I must get up early tomorrow.
    zorunlu koşulobligatory conditionsine qua non, an indispensable condition 
    Zu
    zula etmekto put/hide in a secret place, to give secretly, in an undercover waysame meaningSigara paketini bahçede bir yere zula ettim. Babam asla onu orada bulamaz. I secretly hid the packet of cigarettes somewhere in the garden. My father can never find it there.
    zulaya atmakto throw in a secret placeto put/hide in a secret placeKorkma. Parayı zulaya attım. Artık kimse bulamaz. Don't worry. I put the money in a secret place. No one can find it now.
    züğürt (züğür) tesellisipenniless consolationan unimportant trifle that a person pretends is important in order to console himself about a major loss or failureBakma sen, benim söylediklerim züğürt tesellisi, bunu ben de biliyorum. Don't look at me, the things I said are no more than a self-deceiving consolation, and I know it...

    Example of zügürt tesellisi
    Thanks to Mümtaz ARIKAN of Gözcu Gazetesi
    for this excellent illustrative example of the idiom above...
    Apri 3, 2000


    Figurative traslation:
    The Sultan says: Every sunset brings me great sadness...
    His Chief Astrologer replies: Ahh, but you mustn't forget the romance that awaits you at night, my dear Sultan...
    The magical telescope interjects: The Sultan is distracting attention from his failures in the Harem (by complaining about his 'sundown sadness')...
    zülfü yare dokunmak to touch (the) beloved's tress (of hair)
    Note: One of our guest language consultants, DS adds, "This idiom is originally Persian or Arabic. 'Zülf-ü yar' or 'Zülf-i yar' meaning 'Hair of the loved/lover/fiancé/etc'. And if someone were to try to touch the hair of someone else's lover (i.e. make a sexual advance), then they'd be in big trouble!"
    to offend the powers that be, step on a bigwig's toesZülfü yare dokunmak isteyen, sonucuna katlanmasını da bilmelidir. Anyone who wants to step on a bigwig's toes, must know how to endure the result.
    Zümrüdüanka gibilike Simurgh (a mythical bird of enormous size)wonderful (but imaginary)Söylediğin şey Zümrüdüanka gibi. Onu nasıl bulayım ki? The thing you have mentioned is wonderful, like Simurgh the mythical bird. How can I find it?
    In Turkey - Türkiye'de

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    We wish to extend thanks to
    Emin Özdemir, Osman Çizmeciler, Ömer Asım Aksoy, H. Fethi Gözler,
    Ferit Devellioğlu, Nermin and Muammer Yüzbaşıoğlu,
    Halil Uysal, Ali Püsküllüoğlu, and Ali Uslu

    for their Turkish Idioms source material -- on which some of this page is based.

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    In Turkey - Türkiye'de

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