The Global Language of Kites

As you can see from this partial list, kite flying occurs all over the world. Each language has its own term and probably own distinct meaning or translation. No matter what country or what language, kite flying brings smiles wherever it happens.

  • Afrikaans – Vlieers
  • Arabic – Tayara
  • Argentina – Barilete
  • Belgian – Plakwaaier
  • Chinese – Fung jung , Pianzi
  • Dutch – Vlieger
  • English – Kite
  • Estonian – Lohe
  • Finnish – Leijani
  • French – Cerf volant
  • German – Drachen
  • Greek – Xoptaetou
  • Hebrew – Afifon
  • Hindi – Pathang
  • Icelandic – Flugdreki
  • Indonesia – Layang-layang
  • Italian – Aquilone, Cervo volante
  • Japanese – Tako
  • Korean – Youn
  • Mexican – Papalote
  • Norwegian & Danish – Drage
  • Persian – Badbadak (wind-little-wind)
  • Polish – Latawiec
  • Portuguese – Pipas, Papagaio
  • Philippines – Saranggola
  • Russian – Letuchij zmeij, zmei
  • Serbo-Croat – Zmaj
  • Slovak – Sarkan
  • Spanish – Cometas
  • Swedish – Drake
  • Thai – Wau, Wow
  • American Sign Language – If you are right handed, take your left hand index finger, and point (touching) to the center of your right wrist just below your right palm, with your palm flat (fingers extended to indicate a bigger kite). Your right thumb would normally be about 4-6 inches away from your right cheek, initially. At the same time wiggle your right hand while raising it higher, about 6-10 inches.

 


Please note that these words are in their Anglicized version. The terms come from kites.org copyright 1998; Kites, Kids and Education (copyright) David Ellis, Kansas City Kite Club; Charlie Charlton with help from rec.org.

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