To me the direct translation of this phrase Hoch sollst du leben is literally High shall you live. I've looked on dict.cc but the closest phrase I found was Hoch soll er leben which they said is the equivalent of For he is a jolly good fellow. I saw other translations that showed Hail to thee. Is there a more up to date English equivalent of the phrase?

  • In my view, "Hoch soll er leben" == "Hooray for [X]!" Jan 13, 2020 at 8:03
  • Oder "three cheers for [X]!" Jan 13, 2020 at 10:02
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    Instead of closing as off-topic wouldn't it make sense to migrate this to english.SE? Jan 14, 2020 at 7:41

2 Answers 2


Hoch soll er leben, hoch soll er leben, drei mal hoch.

That's a sung toast on a reasonable old birthday child / late bloomer / other somewhat murky occassions. Ages 60 and up, sung by his drinking buddies. Because of that

For he's a jolly good fellow, for he's a jolly good fellow, which nobody can deny.

is quite accurate.

  • thanks. it just seemed For he's a jolly good fellow very antiquated.
    – mjl007
    Jan 13, 2020 at 0:27
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    How would you justify your judgement that this song is being used preferably for people aged 60+? In my experience, it is used for everybody able to intellectually process the wording. Jan 13, 2020 at 7:53
  • Then I must be unable to process the wording because I stopped hearing it after I was about 8 years old... Jan 13, 2020 at 8:01
  • @infinitezero Perhaps I misunderstood Janka's answer? Does he mean "used for people 60+" or "used by poeple 60+"? (By "able to process the wording" I meant: not sung for babies prior to acquirement of speech.) Jan 13, 2020 at 8:18
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    I've heard it in a kindergarten recently...
    – Arsak
    Jan 13, 2020 at 16:26

Janka's answer offers the correct lyrics, but it's not the exact translation, since "he's a jolly good fellow" is a description while "hoch sollst Du leben" is more kind of a wish. Think of "Du sollst hochleben" instead, which is more related to "you shall be celebrated" (or cheered (up)on) though I guess there's some leeway to interpret the "hoch leben" as "have a great life".

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    We, experiencing ourselfs as internationally minded, usually sing: "High shall he liven, high shall he liven, three times high!" Jan 13, 2020 at 22:28
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    @ChristianGeiselmann reminds me of "I get my go stop over meadows" 🙈 Jan 14, 2020 at 7:39
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    "Gehalt" als "go stop" - Aaaarrrggghhh!!! - I barrel it not! Jan 14, 2020 at 13:24
  • @Volker Thank you for the oversetting help, without would I not there with clear come. Jan 14, 2020 at 14:00

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