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Thai language

Thai language
Thai ??????? phasa thai Pronunciation Spoken in pʰāːsǎːtʰāj Thailand, Northern Malaysia, Cambodia, Southern Myanmar, Laos 70–75 million 39 Kradai Tai Southwestern East Central Chiang Saeng Thai Thai script

phonology can make Thai difficult to learn for those who do not already speak a related language. Thai is mutually intelligible with Lao.

Languages and dialects
Standard Thai, also known as Central Thai or Siamese, is the official language of Thailand, spoken by about 65 million people (1990) including speakers of Bangkok Thai (although the latter is sometimes considered as a separate dialect). Khorat Thai is spoken by about 400,000 (1984) in Nakhon Ratchasima; it occupies a linguistic position somewhere between Central Thai and the Isan on a dialect continuum, and may be considered a variant or dialect of either. A majority of the people in the Isan region of Thailand speak a dialect of the Lao language, which has influenced the Central Thai dialect. In addition to Standard Thai, Thailand is home to other related Tai languages, including: • Isan (Northeastern Thai), the language of the Isan region of Thailand, considered by some to be a dialect of the Lao language, which it very closely resembles (although it is written in the Thai alphabet). It is spoken by about 15 million people (1983). • Nyaw language, spoken mostly in Nakhon Phanom Province, Sakhon Nakhon Province, Udon Thani Province of Northeast Thailand. • Galung language, spoken in Nakhon Phanom Province of Northeast Thailand. • Lü (Tai Lue, Dai), spoken by about 78,000 (1993) in northern Thailand. • Northern Thai (Lanna, Kam Meuang, or Thai Yuan), spoken by about 6 million (1983) in the formerly independent kingdom of Lanna (Chiang Mai). • Phuan, spoken by an unknown number of people in central Thailand, Isan and Northern Laos. • Phu Thai, spoken by about 156,000 around Nakhon Phanom Province (1993). • Shan (Thai Luang, Tai Long, Thai Yai), spoken by about 56,000 in north-west

Total speakers Ranking Language family

Writing system Official status Official language in Regulated by Language codes ISO 639-1 ISO 639-2 ISO 639-3

Thailand The Royal Institute

th tha tha
This page contains Indic text. Without rendering support you may see irregular vowel positioning and a lack of conjuncts. More...

Thai (???????, Phasa Thai , transcription: phasa thai, transliteration: p̣hās̄ʹāthịy; IPA: [pʰāːsǎːtʰāj]), is the national and official language of Thailand and the mother tongue of the Thai people, Thailand’s dominant ethnic group. Thai is a member of the Tai group of the Kradai language family. The Kradai languages are thought to have originated in what is now southern China, and some linguists have proposed links to the Austroasiatic, Austronesian, or Sino-Tibetan language families. It is a tonal and analytic language. The combination of tonality, a complex orthography, relational markers and a distinctive

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Thailand along the border with the Shan States of Burma (1993). • Song, spoken by about 20,000 to 30,000 in central and northern Thailand (1982). • Southern Thai (Pak Dtai), spoken about 5 million (1990). • Thai Dam, spoken by about 20,000 (1991) in Isan and Saraburi Province. Statistics are from Ethnologue 2003-10-4. Many of these languages are spoken by larger numbers outside of Thailand. Most speakers of dialects and minority languages speak Central Thai as well, since it is the language used in schools and universities all across the kingdom. Numerous languages not related to Thai are spoken within Thailand by ethnic minority hill tribespeople. These languages include Hmong-Mien (Yao), Karen, Lisu, and others. Standard Thai is composed of several distinct registers, forms for different social contexts: • Street Thai (???????, spoken Thai): informal, without polite terms of address, as used between close relatives and friends. • Elegant Thai (?????????, written Thai): official and written version, includes respectful terms of address; used in simplified form in newspapers. • Rhetorical Thai: used for public speaking. • Religious Thai: (heavily influenced by Sanskrit and Pāli) used when discussing Buddhism or addressing monks. • Royal Thai (?????????): (influenced by Khmer) used when addressing members of the royal family or describing their activities. Most of the Thais can speak and understand all of these contexts. Street and Elegant are the basis of all conversations; rhetorical, religious and royal Thai are taught in schools as the national curriculum.

Thai language
has Indic origins), the Thais adopted and modified the Khmer script to create their own writing system. While the oldest known inscription in the Khmer language dates from 611 CE, inscriptions in Thai writing began to appear around 1292 CE. Notable features include: 1. It is an abugida script, in which the implicit vowel is a short /a/ in a syllable without final consonant and a short /o/ in a syllable with final consonant. 2. Tone markers are placed above the consonant just before the vowel sound of the syllable. 3. Vowels sounding after a consonant are nonsequential: they can be located before, after, above or below the consonant, or in a combination of these positions.

Transcription
There is no universal standard for transcribing Thai into the Latin alphabet. For example, the name of King Rama IX, the present monarch, is transcribed variously as Bhumibol, Phumiphon, phuuM miH phohnM, or many other versions. Guide books, text books and dictionaries may each follow different systems. For this reason, most language courses recommend that learners master the Thai alphabet. What comes closest to a standard is the Royal Thai General System of Transcription (RTGS), published by the Thai Royal Institute.[1] This system is increasingly used in Thailand by central and local governments, especially for road signs. Its main drawbacks are that it does not indicate tone or vowel length. It is not possible to reconstruct the Thai spelling from the RTGS transcriptions.

Transliteration
The ISO published an international standard for the transliteration of Thai into Roman script in September 2003 (ISO 11940) [1]. By adding diacritics to the Latin letters, it makes the transcription reversible, making it a true transliteration. This system is intended for academic use, but is rarely used in any context.

Script
The Thai alphabet is derived from the Khmer alphabet, which is modeled after the Brahmic script from the Indic family. The language and its alphabet are closely related to the Lao language and alphabet. Most literate Lao are able to read and understand Thai, as more than half of the Thai vocabulary, grammar, intonation, vowels and so forth are common with the Lao language. Much like the Burmese adopted the Mon script (which also

Grammar
From the perspective of linguistic typology, Thai can be considered to be an analytic language. The word order is Subject Verb

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Object, although the subject is often omitted. The Thai pronominal system varies according to the sex and relative status of speaker and audience.

Thai language
all, so ???? (laeo) is not always used to indicate the past.

Verbs
Verbs do not inflect (i.e. do not change with person, tense, voice, mood, or number) nor are there any participles. Duplication conveys the idea of doing the verb intensively. The passive voice is indicated by the insertion of ??? (thuk, IPA: [tʰuːk])) before the verb. For example: • ???????? (khao thuk ti, IPA: [kʰǎw tʰuːk tiː]), He is hit. This describes an action that is out of the receiver’s control and, thus, conveys suffering. To convey the opposite sense, a sense of having an opportunity arrive, ??? (dai, IPA: [daj], can) is used. For example: • ???????????????????????? (khao cha dai pai thiao mueang lao, IPA: [kʰǎw tɕaʔ dâj paj tʰîow mɯːaŋ laːw]), He gets to visit Laos. Note, dai (IPA: [daj] and IPA: [daːj]), though both spelled ??? , convey two separate meanings. The short vowel dai (IPA: [daj]) conveys an opportunity has arisen and is placed before the verb. The long vowel dai (IPA: [daːj]) is placed after the verb and conveys the idea that one has been given permission or one has the ability to do something. Also see the past tense below. • ???????? (khao ti dai, IPA: [kʰǎw tiː dâːj]), He is/was allowed to hit or He is/was able to hit Negation is indicated by placing ??? (mai, not) before the verb. • ????????, (khao mai ti) He is not hitting. or He doesn’t hit. Tense is conveyed by tense markers before or after the verb. Present can be indicated by ????? (kamlang, IPA: [kamlaŋ], currently) before the verb for ongoing action (like English -ing form), by ???? (yu, IPA: [juː]) after the verb, or by both. For example: • ???????????? (khao kamlang wing, IPA: [kʰǎw kamlaŋ wiŋ]), or • ??????????? (khao wing yu, IPA: [kʰǎw wiŋ juː]), or • ???????????????? (khao kamlang wing yu, IPA: [kʰǎw kamlaŋ wiŋ juː]), He is running. Future can be indicated by ?? (cha, IPA: [tɕaʔ], will) before the verb or by a

Adjectives and adverbs
There is no morphological distinction between adverbs and adjectives. Many words can be used in either function. They follow the word they modify, which may be a noun, verb, or another adjective or adverb. Intensity can be expressed by a duplicated word, which is used to mean "very" (with the first occurrence at a higher pitch) or "rather" (with both at the same pitch) (Higbie 187-188). Usually, only one word is duplicated per clause. • ?????? (khon uan, IPA: [kʰon ʔuan ]) a fat person • ??????? (khon uan uan, IPA: [kʰon ʔuan ʔuan]) a very/rather fat person • ???????????????? (khon thi uan reo mak) a person who becomes/became fat very quickly • ????????????????? (khon thi uan reo mak mak) a person who becomes/became fat very very quickly Comparatives take the form "A X ???? B" (kwa, IPA: [kwaː]), A is more X than B. The superlative is expressed as "A X ??????" (thi sut, IPA: [tʰiːsut]), A is most X. • ?????????????? (khao uan kwa chan) S/he is fatter than me. • ????????????? (khao uan thi sut) S/he is the fattest (of all). Because adjectives can be used as complete predicates, many words used to indicate tense in verbs (see Verbs:Tense below) may be used to describe adjectives. • ?????? (chan hiu) I am hungry. • ???????? (chan cha hiu) I will be hungry. • ??????????? (chan kamlang hiu) I am becoming hungry. or I am hungry right now. • ?????????? (chan hiu laeo) I am already hungry. or I was hungry already. • ?????????? mostly means "I am hungry right now" because normally, ???? (laeo) is a word used to indicate the past, but sometimes it is used for euphony without meaning. For example, ?????????????? (laeo thoe cha pai nai): Where will you go?. In this sentence ???? did not indicate at

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Word ?? ????? ??? ??? ???? ??? ??? ??? ??? ?????? ??? ???? ?????? ??????? RTGS phom dichan chan khun than thoe rao khao man phuak khao phi nong IPA [pʰǒm] [dìːtɕʰán]) [tɕʰǎn] [kʰun] [tʰân] [tʰɤː] [raw] [kʰǎw] [mɑn] [pʰûak kʰǎw] [pʰîː] [nɔːŋ] Meaning I/me (masculine; formal) I/me (feminine; formal) I/me (masculine or feminine; informal) you (polite) you (polite to a person of high status) you (informal), she/her (informal) we/us, I/me/you (casual) he/him, she/her it they/them

Thai language

older brother, sister (also often used loosely for older cousins and non-relatives) younger brother, sister (also often used loosely for younger cousins and non-relatives) cousin (male or female)

luk phi luk [luːk pʰiː nong luːk nɔːŋ]

time expression indicating the future. For example: • ????????? (khao cha wing, IPA: [kʰǎw tɕaʔ wiŋ]), He will run or He is going to run Past can be indicated by ??? (dai, IPA: [daːj]) before the verb or by a time expression indicating the past. However, ???? (laeo, :IPA: [lɛːw], already) is more often used to indicate the past tense by being placed behind the verb. Or, both ??? and ???? are put together to form the past tense expression, i.e. Subject + ??? + Verb + ????. For example: • ????????? (khao dai kin, IPA: [kʰǎw daːj kin]), He ate • ?????????? (khao kin laeo, IPA: [kʰǎw kin lɛːw], He (already) ate or He’s already eaten • ????????????? (khao dai kin laeo, IPA: [kʰǎw daːj kin lɛːw]), He (already) ate or He’s already eaten

Nouns and pronouns
Nouns are uninflected and have no gender; there are no articles. Nouns are neither singular nor plural. Some specific nouns are reduplicated to form collectives: ???? (dek, child) is often repeated as ????? (dek dek) to refer to a group of

children. The word ??? (phuak, [pʰûak]) may be used as a prefix of a noun or pronoun as a collective to pluralize or emphasise the following word. (?????, phuak phom, [pʰûak pʰǒm], we, masculine; ?????? phuak rao, [pʰûak raw], emphasised we; ?????? phuak ma, (the) dogs) Plurals are expressed by adding classifiers, used as measure words (????????), in the form of noun-number-classifier (????????, "teacher five person" for "five teachers"). While in English, such classifiers are usually absent ("four chairs") or optional ("two bottles of beer" or "two beers"), a classifier is almost always used in Thai (hence "chair four item" and "beer two bottle"). Subject pronouns are often omitted, while nicknames are often used where English would use a pronoun. There are specialised pronouns in the royal and sacred Thai languages. The following are appropriate for conversational use: The reflexive pronoun is ?????? (tua eng), which can mean any of: myself, yourself, ourselves, himself, herself, themselves. This can be mixed with another pronoun to create an intensive pronoun, such as ???????? (tua phom eng, lit: I myself) or ????????? (tua khun eng, lit: you yourself). Thai does not have a separate possessive pronoun. Instead, possession is indicated by the particle ??? (khong). For example, "my mother" is ???????? (mae khong phom, lit:

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Word ??? ???, ??? or ??? ?? or ??? ?? ?? Tone mid low falling high rising Thai ?? ???? ???? ??? ??? RTGS cha cha la si na Phonemic /nāː/ /nàː/ /nâː/ /náː/ /nǎː/ IPA [tɕa] [tɕaː] [la] [si] [na] Meaning indicating a request indicating emphasis indicating emphasis indicating emphasis or an imperative softening; indicating a request English a paddy (a nickname) face

Thai language

Phonetic [naː˥˧] [naː˧˩] [naː˥˩] [naː˧˥] [naː˨˩˧]

aunt/uncle(younger than your parents) thick students always address their teachers by "??? ?????? ???????" (each means teacher) rather than ??? (you). Teachers, monks, and doctors are almost always addressed this way.

mother of I). This particle is often implicit, so the phrase is shortened to ????? (mae phom). Above is only a short list. Thai language has many more pronouns. Their usage is full of nuances. For example: • "?? ??? ??? ????? ???? ??? ?? ??? ????? ???????? ???????? ?????" all translate to "I", but each word expresses different gender, age, politeness, status, and relationship between the speaker and listener. • ??? (rao) can be first person (I), second person (you), or both (we), depending on the context. • When speaking to someone older, ??? (nu) is a feminine first person (I). However, when speaking to someone younger, the same word ??? is a neuter second person (you). • The second person pronoun ??? (thoe) (lit: you) is semi-feminine. It is used only when the speaker or the listener (or both) are female. Males usually don’t address each other by this pronoun. • Both ??? (khun) and ??? (thoe) are polite neuter second person pronouns. However, ?????? (khun thoe) is a feminine derogative third person. • Instead of a second person pronoun such as "???" (you), it’s much more common for unrelated strangers to call each other "??? ???? ??? ??? ??? ?? ?? ???" (brother/sister/ aunt/uncle/granny). • To express deference, the second person pronoun is sometimes replaced by a profession, similar to how, in English, presiding judges are always addressed as "your honor" rather than "you". In Thai,

Particles
The particles are often untranslatable words added to the end of a sentence to indicate respect, a request, encouragement or other moods (similar to the use of intonation in English), as well as varying the level of formality. They are not used in elegant (written) Thai. The most common particles indicating respect are ???? (khrap, IPA: [kʰráp], with a high tone) for a man, and ??? (kha, [kʰâ], with a falling tone) for a woman; these can also be used to indicate an affirmative, though the ???(falling tone) is changed to a ??(high tone) Other common particles are:

Phonology
This article contains IPA phonetic symbols. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Unicode characters.

Tones
There are five phonemic tones: middle, low, high, rising and falling. The table shows an example of both the phonemic tones and their phonetic realization, in the IPA.

Consonants
Thai distinguishes among three voice/aspiration patterns for plosive consonants:

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Bilabial Labio- Alveolar dental Nasal [ m ] ? [ [ pʰ p ] ] ?,?,? ? [ b ] ? [f] ?,? [t] ?,? [n] ?,?

Thai language
PostPalatal Velar alveolar [ ŋ ] ? [ [ kʰ ] k ?,?,?,?,? ] ? [ʔ] ?** Glottal

Plosive

[ tʰ ] [d] ?,?*,?,?,?,? ?,?*,?

Fricative Affricate

[s] ?,?,?,? [ tʃ [ tʃʰ ] ] ? ?, ?, ? [r] ? [j] ?,? [ w ] ?

[h] ?,?

Trill Approximant

Lateral approximant • unvoiced, unaspirated • unvoiced, aspirated • voiced, unaspirated Where English has only a distinction between the voiced, unaspirated /b/ and the unvoiced, aspirated /p/, Thai distinguishes a third sound which is neither voiced nor aspirated, which occurs in English only as an allophone of /p/, approximately the sound of the p in "spin". There is similarly an alveolar /t/, /tʰ/, /d/ triplet. In the velar series there is a /k/, /kʰ/ pair and in the postalveolar series the /tʃ/, /tʃʰ/ pair. (These are laminal, but not palatalized like Chinese /tɕ, tɕʰ/.) In each cell below, the first line indicates International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA), the second indicates the Thai characters in initial position (more letters appearing in the same box have identical pronunciation). * ? can be pronounced as [tʰ] or [d] depended on Thai words.
**

[l] ?,?

Vowels
The basic vowels of the Thai language, from front to back and close to open, are given in the following table. The top entry in every cell is the symbol from the International Phonetic Alphabet, the second entry gives the spelling in the Thai alphabet, where a dash (–) indicates the position of the initial consonant after which the vowel is pronounced. A second dash indicates that a final consonant must follow.

The glottal plosive is implied after a short vowel without final, or the silent ? before a vowel. Monophthongs of Thai. From Tingsabadh & Abramson (1993:25)

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Front unrounded short Close Close-mid Open-mid Open /i/ -? /e/ ?-? /ɛ/ ?-? long /iː/ -? /eː/ ?/ɛː/ ?/a/ -?, -? Short IPA /aː/ /iː/ /uː/ /eː/ /ɛː/ /ɯː/ /ɤː/ /oː/ /ɔː/ /fǎːn/ /krìːt/ /sùːt/ /ʔēːn/ /pʰɛ́ː/ /kʰlɯ̂ːn/ /dɤ̄ːn/ /kʰôːn/ /klɔːŋ/ Gloss ’to slice’ ’to cut’ ’to inhale’ ’to recline’ ’to be defeated’ ’wave’ ’to walk’ ’to fell’ ’drum’ Short IPA /aːj/ /aːw/ /iːa/ – /uːa/ /uːj/ /eːw/ /ɛːw/ /ɯːa/ /ɤːj/ /ɔːj/ /oːj/ Thai ?–*, ?–?* ?–??? –?? –??? –?? ?–?? – – – – – ?–*, ?–? Thai script –? –? –? ?–? ?–? –? ?–?? ?–? ?–?? IPA /a/ /i/ /u/ /e/ /ɛ/ /ɯ/ /ɤ/ /o/ /ɔ/ /fǎn/ /krìt/ /sùt/ /ʔēn/ /pʰɛ́ʔ/ /kʰɯ̂n/ /ŋɤ̄n/ /kʰôn/ /klɔ̀ŋ/ /aː/ -? Back unrounded short /ɯ/ -? /ɤ/ ?-?? long /ɯː/ -? /ɤː/ ?-?

Thai language

rounded short /u/ -? /o/ ?-? /ɔ/ ?-?? long /uː/ -? /oː/ ?/ɔː/ -?

Long Thai –? –? –? ?– ?– –? ?–? ?– –? Long Thai –?? –?? ?–?? – –?? –?? ?–? ?–? ?–?? ?–? –?? ?–?

Gloss ’to dream’ ’dagger’ ’rearmost’ ’ligament’ ’goat’ ’to go up’ ’silver’ ’thick (soup)’ ’box’

IPA /aj/ /aw/ /ia/ /iw/ /ua/ /uj/ /ew/ – – – – – The basic vowels can be combined into diphthongs. Tingsabadh & Abramson (1993) analyze those ending in high vocoids as underlyingly /Vj/ and /Vw/. For purposes of determining tone, those marked with an asterisk are also classified as long:

The vowels each exist in long-short pairs: these are distinct phonemes forming unrelated words in Thai,[2] but usually transliterated the same: ??? (khao) means he or she, while ??? (khao) means white. The long-short pairs are as follows:

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Thai ?–??? –?? ?–??? IPA /iow/ /uɛj/ /ɯɛj/

Thai language

Notes
[1] Royal Thai General System of Transcription, published by the Thai Royal Institute only in Thai. [2] Tingsabadh & Abramson (1993:25)

References
• Higbie, James and Thinsan, Snea. Thai Reference Grammar: The Structure of Spoken Thai. Bangkok: Orchid Press, 2003. ISBN 974-8304-96-5. • Nacaskul, Karnchana, Ph.D. (??????????????????? ??.?????? ???????) Thai Phonology, 4th printing. (????????????????, ????????????? 4) Bangkok: Chulalongkorn Press, 1998. ISBN 978-9-746-39375-1. • Nanthana Ronnakiat, Ph.D. (??.?????? ?????????) Phonetics in Principle and Practical. (??????????????????????????????) Bangkok: Thammasat University, 2005. ISBN 974-571-929-3. • Segaller, Denis. Thai Without Tears: A Guide to Simple Thai Speaking. Bangkok: BMD Book Mags, 1999. ISBN 974-87115-2-8. • Smyth, David. Thai: An Essential Grammar. London: Routledge, 2002. ISBN 0-415-22614-7. • Tingsabadh, M.R. Kalaya & Arthur Abramson (1993), "Thai", Journal of the International Phonetic Association 23 (1): 24–28

Diphthongs of Thai. From Tingsabadh & Abramson (1993:25) Additionally, there are three triphthongs, all of which are long: For a guide to written vowels, see the Thai alphabet page.

Vocabulary
Other than compound words and words of foreign origin, most words are monosyllabic. Historically, words have most often been borrowed from Sanskrit and Pāli; Buddhist terminology is particularly indebted to these. Old Khmer has also contributed its share, especially in regard to royal court terminology. Since the beginning of the 20th century, however, the English language has had the greatest influence. Many Teochew Chinese words are also used, some replacing existing Thai words. Thailand also uses the distinctive Thai six hour clock in addition to the 24 hour clock.

External links
• • • • • Thai phrasebook in wikitravel Ethnologue write-up on Thai IPA and SAMPA for Thai Thai-English dictionary Thai2english.com: LEXiTRON-based ThaiEnglish dictionary • The Royal Institute Dictionary, official standard Thai-Thai dictionary • Say Hello in the Thai Language

See also
• Thai numerals • Literature in Thailand • The Royal Institute of Thailand

Retrieved from "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thai_language"

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Thai language

Categories: Languages of Thailand, Thai language, Tonal languages, Isolating languages This page was last modified on 18 May 2009, at 07:53 (UTC). All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. (See Copyrights for details.) Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a U.S. registered 501(c)(3) taxdeductible nonprofit charity. Privacy policy About Wikipedia Disclaimers

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