Never On Sunday: Melina Mercouri

Never on Sunday” was written by Manos Hadjidakis originally in Greek with the title “Ta Paidia tou Peiraia” (The children of Piraeus). The original Greek version featured lyrics also written by Hadjidakis, and was performed in the film by Melina Mercouri. The original Greek lyrics (along with the foreign translations in German, French and Italian) tell the story of the main female character of the film, Illya (Mercouri). Illya is a jolly woman who enjoys life, the town and the people of her native Piraeus. Although she earns her money as a prostitute, she longs to meet a man someday who is just as full of joie de vivre as she is herself.

In 1960, the song was nominated and won the Academy Award for Best Original Song, a first for a foreign-language picture since the Academy began to recognize achievements in this category in 1934.

Oh, you can kiss me on a Monday a Monday a Monday
is very very good
Or you can kiss me on a Tuesday a Tuesday a Tuesday
in fact I wish you would
Or you can kiss me on a Wednesday a Thursday
a Friday and Saturday is best
But never ever on a Sunday a Sunday a Sunday
cause that’s my day of rest
Most any day you can be my guest
Any day you say but my day of rest
Just name the day that you like the best
Only stay away on my day of rest
Oh, you can kiss me on a cool day a hot day a wet day
which ever one you choose
Or try to kiss me on a grey day a May day a pay day
and see if I refuse
And if you make it on a bleak day a freak day or week day
Well you can be my guest
But never ever on a Sunday a Sunday the one day
I need a little rest
Oh, you can kiss me on a week day a week day a week day
the day to be my guest


About layanglicana

Author of books on Calcutta, Delhi and Dar es Salaam, I am now blogging as a lay person about the Church of England and the Anglican Communion. I am also blogging about the effects of World War One on the village of St Mary Bourne, Hampshire.
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3 Responses to Never On Sunday: Melina Mercouri

  1. Andreas M says:

    From my window I send
    one, two and three and four kisses
    Where in the port arrive
    one and two and three and four birds

    I would like so much to have
    one and two and three and four kids
    who when they grow up they will be leventes(1)
    for the honour of Pirea

    I have searched so much
    but I cant find a port
    which make my so crazy as Pireas
    when the night comes
    Pireas fill me up with songs
    and its rythm(2) change
    and filling up with children

    From my door as I pass
    there is no one who do not love him
    and when I go fro sleeping at the night,
    I know, I know, that I will dream him

    I put gems on my neck,
    and a bead as an amulet
    because I await at the evenings,
    when I go to the port,
    to find a stranger man

    These are the greek lyrics of this song that you can hear in the videoclip. I am so tired and my translation is a little bit strange but I hope so to give you somehow the meaning of this song.

    1. Leventes in Greeks mens the young brave men, who have honour and strength. Unfortuantely it is very difficult to translate the real meaning of this word.
    2. I say the rythm but in the greek lyrics we can here the word “penies”. When Greeks say penia they mean the sound of the bouzouki

    This song is not only the first foreign song that won the Oscar, but is one of the best selling songs in the world. It have been translate for more than 20 different language and we can hear very often a new version of it. The most newest and popular version come from “Pink MArtini”

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