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Learn a Thai word a day


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I live in Thailand. Actually I have lived here for more than 20 years already. And I found the Thai language to be a very interesting language. So here's my contribution to the learning of the Thai language.

The word for today is 'thiau'. If you pronounce it slowly, it sounds like 'thee yau'.

'thiau' has a meaning that is not directly translatable into English because it embodies a uniquely Thai concept.

When you say 'ma thiau thi ban', it means 'come visit me at my house'. However, if you reverse translate, you will end up with 'ma yeam poom thi ban poom' because Thai has another word for 'visit' which is 'yeam'.

'thiau' is used when you mean to say you are going somewhere with no specific business in mind.

Hope this helps you to understand the Thai language.

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  • 11 months later...
  • 1 month later...

I like the idea of this post. So here is another word.

khâo jai (เข้าใจ); literally: entering the heart

Khâo jai means to "understand", as in understanding a language or understanding what someone says. This word is one of many words that include jai (ใจ) which is the shorter version of the  word "heart". If you want to understand something, it has to enter your heart. I like the idea of it. There are tons of other words with ใจ, this is something that makes the Thai language special.

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The word for this day is suăy (สวย), which means beautiful (used for girls only, nature, views..not for males)..This word is very important in Thailand, everything should be สวย if you ask the Thais.  The rising tone here is very important, otherwise it means "bad luck" (suay;ซวย).A very common mistake.

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Pôm (ผม) is the personal pronoun I +(me,mine), it is used for male speakers. One of the first words you learn in Thai, but did you know that the exact same word, written exactly the same way also means hair?

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On 12/1/2014, 8:47:54, Victor Leigh said:

Hope this helps you to understand the Thai language.

Ok, I know this is an old post, but here goes. It's not helpful because you aren't using Thai script, which leads to mispronunciation.

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The word for today is mâe nám (แม่น้ำ) which means river.  The word mâe nám consists of two smaller words. Mâe (แม่) which means mother and น้ำ (nám) which means water. So "Mother Water" is basically how you say river in Thai.

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another word with jai(ใจ). jai dee (ใจดี̣̣̣) means "friendly, someone who is kind". Dee (ดี) is the Thai word for "good" and you might have seen it before (sawad DEE krap/kha).
By the way if you say dee jai (ดีใจ) it becomes the verb to be glad (about sth.).

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I'm glad to find this thread. I'm interested in learning Thai. I watch lakorns with subs. Unfortunately, now channels don't allow drama's to be subbed hence it's become a task to understand them. Look forward to learn Thai words through this thread. Thank you Victor Leigh and Picadilly :)

I've learned few words like Nam, Khop khun, Kow chai, mai ow, mai roo, mai yom, fun dee,  pai, fai and some more. I'm really excited to learn more. Thank you :)

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2 hours ago, Coral said:

I'm glad to find this thread. I'm interested in learning Thai. I watch lakorns with subs. Unfortunately, now channels don't allow drama's to be subbed hence it's become a task to understand them. Look forward to learn Thai words through this thread. Thank you Victor Leigh and Picadilly :)

I've learned few words like Nam, Khop khun, Kow chai, mai ow, mai roo, mai yom, fun dee,  pai, fai and some more. I'm really excited to learn more. Thank you :)

You already know a lot of words, thats great. Which lakorns do you watch?

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4 minutes ago, Piccadilly said:

You already know a lot of words, thats great. Which lakorns do you watch?

I watch few Daras' lakorns. Mostly Nadech, Kimberley, Yaya, Mark, James Ma and others. I'm a huge fan of Koo Jins - MK and NY so I watch theirs along with JMa. While watching the lakorns with sub, I concentrate on what they are saying. That's how I've learned few sentences

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2 minutes ago, Piccadilly said:

https://www.viki.com/explore?country=thailand

Check out viki.com, they offer many movies and series from Asia with subtitles 

Viki cannot sub Lakorns anymore due to copyrights issue. There are some fan clubs which sub in their private FB.

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 Gâo (เก้า)= nine/9. Gâo is a very common nickname in Thailand because Thais believe that 9 is a lucky number. It comes from the Cantonese word gao (9)

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 1/25/2016, 3:03:17, Coral said:

Viki cannot sub Lakorns anymore due to copyrights issue. There are some fan clubs which sub in their private FB.

This isn't true. There are plenty lakorns with English subs on Viki. Sure, it's an unstable situation, and many shows are removed due to copyright issues (usually on the youtube end). But please don't go around saying viki can't sub lakorns. 

Personally, I don't use English subs very often - I prefer Thai subs or a Thai transcript. Here are some free Thai transcripts for one of my favorite lakorns:

Transcripts for the Thai TV drama สูตรเสน่หา (Sood Sanae Ha/Love recipe)

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  • 7 months later...

This thread is alive. I am so glad. I have been away for quite a while. Many things have changed. I no longer live in Thailand because of my health. No, no, it's not that Thailand is not healthy for me. It's just that I am not that healthy anymore and I live alone in Thailand which makes it rather risky. So, now I am back in Malaysia, living with my son, but my heart is in Thailand. Always.

Here, in Kuala Lumpur, the capital city of Malaysia, we are able to fix up satellite dishes to get TV transmissions from Thailand. Also, there are lots of Thai TV shows which are uploaded to Youtube, so if you want to listen to how native Thais talk, just search in Youtube.

So what's my word for today?

I think I will expand on the word 'jai' (ใจ). 'jai' is the shorter form of the Thai word for 'heart'. The full word is 'hua jai' (หัวใจ) which translates literally as 'head of the heart'. The word 'jai' can be used together with many other words to give different meanings. One combination has already been given earlier, which is 'khao jai' ie 'understand', formed from the words 'khao' ie 'enter' and 'jai' ie 'heart'. So 'khao jai' literally is 'enter heart'. In other words, to understand is to have something enter our heart.

Thai is a rather literal language. Another word formed with the word 'jai' is 'jai dam'. 'Dam' means 'black', so 'jai dam' is 'black heart'. No prizes for guessing what that means. It's the same as what we mean when we say 'black hearted' in English. Interestingly, Chinese also uses the same combination to mean 'wicked'. The Chinese say 'hei xin' (黑心) which translates literally as 'black heart'.

As you would have noticed here, in Thai, the adjective tends to follow the noun. In English, we would put the adjective before the noun. In Chinese, the adjective comes before the noun, too. I think this may have something to do with the structure of questions in the various languages. In English, we ask "What is it?" In Thai, the same question would be re-phrased as "Man ker arai?" (มันคืออะไร) which would translate literally as "It is what?"

That should do for today. Over to you.

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