Greek Language Blog

Word family in Greek: present Posted by on Nov 30, 2021 in Vocabulary

Γεια σας. We are going through a period of gratitude, which is materially by offering presents. Therefore, it is a nice opportunity to meet word family in Greek, whose kernel is the word “present”. If you interested in words families, check the post Word families in Greek: Part One and Word families in Greek: Part Two.


Photo by Kari Shea on Unsplash


#1. The Greek word for present or gift is δώρο (το). The verb δωρίζω means to give a present.


a. Τα παιδιά άνοιξαν τα δώρα τους. The children opened their presents.

b. Οι φίλοι μου μού δώρισαν ένα ρολόι. My friends me gave me a watch as present.

We also use the phrase κάνω δώρο (σε κάποιον): to give somebody a present.


Τι δώρο θα κάνουμε στη μαμά για τα γενέθλιά της; What present will we give mom for her birthday?


#2. Τhere is no Greek word for the giver or the recipient of a present.


#3. Δωρεά (η) means donation. The person who makes a donation is called δωρητής (ο) or δωρήτρια (η).


a. Μπορείτε να κάνετε τη δωρεά σας με κατάθεση σε τραπεζικό λογαριασμό. You can make your donation via bank transfer.

b. H δωρεά οργάνων επιτρέπεται στην Ελλάδα. Organ donation is permitted in Greece.

c. Έμαθαν ότι ο γιος τους ήταν δωρητής οργάνων μετά τον θάνατό του. They found out that their son was an organ donor, after he died.


#4. Δωρεάν (adverb): free of charge


“Πόσα έδωσες για το rapid test;” “Τίποτα, ήταν δωρεάν.”

“How much did you pay for the rapid test?” “Nothing, it was free.”


#5. Δωροδοκώ means to bribe. The passive voice is δωροδοκούμαι. Related words are δωροδοκία (bribery) and δωρολήπτης, δωρολήπτρια (the person who has been bribed, literally “present recipient”).


a. Η ιδιοκτήτρια του σχολείου προπάθησε να δωροδοκήσει τον υπάλληλο του υπουργείου. The owner of the school tried to bribe the ministry worker.

b. Tα μέλη της επιτροπής δεν δωροδοκούνται. The committee members are not bribed.

c. Ο δωρολήπτης τιμωρήθηκε με φυλάκιση. The man who has been bribed was sentenced to jail.


Other words and phrases:

#1. αντίδωρο (το): the present we give as an exchange to the present we got. The word is composed by αντί (instead of) + δώρο. It is a term used in the Orthodox church vocabulary. It consists of small pieces of bread offered at the end of the service. These pieces are what is left from the bread offered for the sacrament of Θεία Ευχαριστία. (Divine Eucharist).

#2. δώρον άδωρον: literally, a gift that is no gift. In British English it could be translated as “like taking coals to Newcastle”.


Κατά την περίοδο του lockdown, τα ξενοδοχεία ήταν ανοιχτά. Αυτό όμως ήταν δώρον άδωρον γιατί δεν επιτρεπόταν να μετακινηθούμε από τον ένα νομό στον άλλο.

During the lockdown, the hotels were open. However, this was pointless because we were not allowed to move from one prefecture to the other.


#3. Φοβού τους Δαναούς και δώρα φέροντας. (translation of the Latin phrase: Timeo Danaos et dona ferentes). This phrase is extracted from the Aeneid and it refers to the Trojan horse (Δούρειος Ίππος). The priest Laocoon (Λαοκόων) tried to prevent the Trojans from bringing the wooden horse inside the walls of Troy. It means “I am afraid of the Greeks even when they bring gifts.” It is not used in daily life, but when said it warns for the potential risks of accepting an unexpected present or a goodwill from people (or foreign politicians, Presidents and so on) who are not our friends.

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About the Author: Ourania

Ourania lives in Athens. She holds a degree in French Literature and a Master’s degree in Special Education for Children. Since 2008, she has been teaching Greek to foreigners.


  1. Wanda Root:

    Thanks for this! It is really helpful. But what about
    γενναιόδωρος? Shouldn’t you have included that one too! I was so thrilled when I learned that word to discover it contained a gift.

    • Ourania:

      @Wanda Root Yes, it’s part of the family 🙂
      Thank you!

  2. Alexandra:

    What about the name Θεόδωρος ? 🙂
    Καλό μήνα, Ράνια!

    • Ourania:

      @Alexandra Καλό μήνα!
      Ναι, Θεόδωρος, Θεοδώρα, Δωροθέα, Ισίδωρος κλπ.