All Things Romania

Slang Word of the Day: Fraier


In your conversations in Romania you’re going to hear the word “fraier” (fry-air) sooner or later and so it’s important to know what it means.

Generally speaking it is the complete opposite of smecher, or perhaps better said, “fraier” is the counterpart to “smecher”.

Think of it this way: the smecher uses his/her cunning and craftiness to profit at the expense of the fraier.

The word “fraier” comes from the German Freier, which originally meant a man who was engaged to be married (a fiance) but now means something along the lines of a “John” or a prostitute’s customer.

In Romanian this has been modified further to mean something along the lines of a “sucker”, as in P.T. Barnum’s famous non-quote, “There’s a sucker born every minute”. Anyone who is a fraier is the “mark” or the victim or the “sucker” or fool that fell for the smecher‘s tricks.

In British English, the most equivalent word to denote fraier would be the term “punter”.

Since the word fraier is a noun, it takes normal declinations:

Gender Singular Plural
Male fraier fraieri
Female fraiera fraiere

Therefore I can now say to all of you, come to Romania and enjoy yourselves, but don’t be a fraier(a)!

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