In the Russian there is a word "xa", which is an exclamation and pronounces like "h"+"a" sounds. It is used to show surprise, good joking mood because of situation changes.
Is there similar exclamation word-sound in English?

  • 1
    A laugh? I think you want a particular kind of laugh: a short, surprised laugh. I can't think of a good word for that, but I would write it, "Hah!" English also uses "ha" for laughter, but usually repeatedly: "Ha ha ha!"
    – apsillers
    Commented Dec 3, 2014 at 19:00
  • I guess it's one of those 'words' that arrived long before any spellings. I'd bet [with no real evidence] that it's a noise we all make, given the right circumstance. Commented Dec 3, 2014 at 19:01
  • @apsillers it is no laugh, laugh doesn't show surprise.
    – klm123
    Commented Dec 3, 2014 at 22:37
  • @Tetsujin so how to spell this noise?
    – klm123
    Commented Dec 3, 2014 at 22:37
  • Same as @apsillers said, "Hah!" It could be a laugh or an expression of surprise - the noise is similar, even if the cause is different. Ha or certainly hahaha would be laughter, but hah could be either, I'd say. Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 7:34

1 Answer 1


'Ha!' is probably the best equivalent in English. We use 'Ha ha ha' for laughter, but a single 'ha' can indicate something funny, or something surprising, or that you have caught someone in the middle of something they thought they'd get away with.

Another interjection you could use, but which might sound a bit archaic, is 'oh-ho!' 'Ah-ha!' might also work in some cases. We might also use "Hmmm!" in some cases, which would indicate that you've just learned something that is surprising or maybe a little bit incriminating. Any of these can be used in a joking, light-hearted way.

  • 1
    I see. I just coundn't find it in google, and though that it must be spell differently. 'Ah-ha!' sounds good too.
    – klm123
    Commented Dec 3, 2014 at 22:38
  • Yes, interjections don't always Google well. ;) Glad that helped.
    – michelle
    Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 14:15

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