Questions tagged [thai]

A Tai-Kadai language spoken in Thailand.

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8
votes
1answer
2k views

Is Thai a stress- or syllable-timed language, and does it matter?

We are gearing up for the new semester at the Thai university where I teach English. One course I’ll be helping out with is on English pronunciation. In the unit on sentence stress, the course ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Lexical similarity among languages used in Southeast Asia

Among many languages used in Southeast Asia (especially I want to talk about Malay, Tagalog, Vietnamese, and Thai), is there any study about which pair of languages is close to each other in ...
6
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2answers
1k views

(Why) did the Thai script convert Sanskrit द /d/ to /th/ and then introduce its own character for /d/?

The first section of the Thai alphabet/abugida seems to follow Sanskrit pretty closely, with just a couple of additions. I believe that Sanskrit had the consonant /d/, which is represented by द in ...
5
votes
1answer
731 views

Is there a theory challenging the "strict" distinction between Thai and Vietnamese?

I understand Thai and Lao and all their dialects, and Vietnamese and all its dialects to be of totally different language evolutionary families (Tai Kra-Dai and Astroasiatic). I can speak and read ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

Could the Mandarin word "要" (yāo) and the Thai word "เอา" (ao), both meaning "to want" be related?

After a couple of weeks in Thailand and learning how to say "I don't want it" I've just realized the word for "want" is very similar to the word for "want" in Mandarin Chinese. I know the coincidence ...
5
votes
1answer
354 views

What's the origin of the Lao (ຈິງໂຈ້) and Thai (จิงโจ้) words for "kangaroo"?

I just found out that the Lao word for "kangaroo" doesn't appear to be a direct loan from English. Both words are pronounced more or less as "ching choh". In fact it doesn't seem to be from French, ...
5
votes
1answer
174 views

What might account for different numbers of formants in plots of male and female speakers pronouncing the same vowel?

I have been looking at a Thai vowel in Praat. I have several exponents from native speakers, though only one of them is male. The female plots all show four formants. The male plot shows five ...
4
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2answers
525 views

Are the Russian "фрязин" and Thai "ฝรั่ง" (farang) related?

In old Russian the word фрязин ([fr'az'in], apostrophe means a soft consonant) was used to denote a westerner. Although the word is not used any more, it is kept as part of some place names, such as a ...
4
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2answers
441 views

Do the Thai and Lao negative particles, "ไม่" (mai) and "ບໍ່" (bo) have reflexes in the other language?

In my continuing interest in this pair of closely related languages I have noticed each uses an unrleated word for the negative particle meaning "no", "not", etc. Thai: ไม่ (mai) Lao: ບໍ່ (bo) Does ...
4
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2answers
298 views

Intrusive misspelling - does it have any origin?

I've seen many cases when people who speak different languages make a common mistake spelling words. They add an extra sound (usually, a consonant) while there is no historic or linguistic evidence ...
4
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2answers
868 views

Do the Thai masculine & feminine "polite particles" have counterparts in Lao?

In Thai there are particles which can be used at the end of many sentences to make them more polite. Different particles are used by male and female speakers: "ครับ" (kráp) : male "ค่ะ" (kâ) : female ...
4
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1answer
435 views

Why is the Lao word for tea "ຊາ" (saa) and not "ຈາ" (chaa)?

In just about every language, the word for "tea" can be traced to one of two variants of the same word. Te, from the Amoy tê of Fujian Province and Taiwan. Cha, from the Cantonese chàh of Guangzhou (...
4
votes
1answer
178 views

'Interstitial' tones in Thai

You don't have to listen to authentic Thai for very long to realize that comparatively few words are pronounced with the dictionary tone. All the learning material out there seems to be focused on ...
3
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1answer
1k views

Looking for Thai letter-frequency resource

I'm currently in Thailand and a bit frustrated with the difficult writing system here. Normally after a week in a country I can learn the writing system to a functional degree (except Han characters ...
3
votes
1answer
555 views

Google Translate Thai with IPA transcription?

IPA is international standard for transcribing phonetic of any language (AFAIK, I am not a linguist), and https://translate.google.com/ is excellent tool for translating between languages. But when I ...
3
votes
1answer
539 views

I need a list of common minimal pairs in Thai

I'm looking for a list of minimal pairs in Thai where the only difference is an accent mark/diacritic. One example would be ห่าง (far) =/= ห้าง (store) Is there someplace to find this? My Thai ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Thai alphabet romanizations?

Is there any standard system of romanization for the Thai alphabet (including consonants, vowels, tones, numbers, and their combinations), or is any such romanization system quite arbitrary? Can ...
3
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0answers
102 views

What was the original pronounciation of the Thai consonant symbols?

The Thai language was devised to serve two main purposes: to write Thai words and to write Sanskrit (or Pali) words. For this reason, the Thai alphabet has one consonant symbol for each Sanskrit sound ...
2
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1answer
266 views

Why does Thai have no words for "yes" or "no"?

There are words like /chaj/ and /mej/, but as far as I understand they are not exactly yes and no.
2
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1answer
119 views

Modern Thai writing system and modern Khmer writing system and the sharing of Non-Sanskrit symbols

I understand that both old and modern Khmer and old and modern Thai, effected one another and share lots of words or "roots" of words. For example Modern Thai words derived from Old Khmer ឆ្លាតor ...
2
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2answers
887 views

What type of trilled R shows up in Thai?

I am one of those native English speakers who always had a very difficult time learning how to roll r's when learning other languages as a child. Now that I'm an adult, I'm trying to learn Thai, and I ...
2
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1answer
99 views

How common are the “politeness particles” in Thai?

A Thai speaker (I’m not sure about their fluency or what regional variants they use) told me that 1) the particles ครับ and ค่ะ are essentially only taught to foreigners and have very little usage ...
2
votes
1answer
84 views

Are there human general communication languages without a future tendency?

In Thai language there is no past tense, at least not for negative sentences: A Thai person might say "I don't go" (ฉัน ไม่ ไป) while the listener is expected to guess from the context if ...
2
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2answers
1k views

Modern Khmer and modern Vietnamese genetic proximity

I know that Khmer and Vietnamese are considered genetically related (Austroasian language family) but I don't know what were and/or are significant commonalities to justify that consideration. I also ...
2
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0answers
541 views

Thai pronunciation symbols and rules on IPA

Where can I find a set of IPA symbols for Thai language pronunciation and its rules? I know IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) was mainly created to represent the differences in sounds of words ...
1
vote
1answer
201 views

How Thai Vowels Work

I am trying to put together a worksheet to understand how the Thai script works. I am looking here and here. The wiki page seems to suggest that there are two types of symbols: combining characters ...
1
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2answers
88 views

Concept / function duplication

I'm looking for a name for the phenomenon whereby some languages like to put chains of words together that mean the same thing, while others don't - just some terminology that would help me search for ...
1
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1answer
241 views

Was the Thai letter ด really derived from ต?

Understanding the relative chronology of implosivization in Thai and Khmer, and how it interacted with the development of the scripts, is difficult (at least for me). In the first answer to this ...
1
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1answer
187 views

When is a conjunction not a conjunction?

I am trying to get to the bottom of Thai constructions which I can only gloss along the lines of: (1) Because of the fact that her friends helped her escape prevented the soldiers from catching her; ...
1
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0answers
1k views

Can someone confirm the Lao language tones in the greeting "sabaidi" [closed]

In Thai สบายดี is sà-bāɪ-dīː(sà with a low tone, bāɪ and dī with mid tones). In Lao ສະບາຍດີ is sá-bàɪ-dìː (sá with a high tone, bàɪ and dìː with low tones). Okay, I need confirmation on the tones in ...
0
votes
1answer
120 views

How does the Thai language express the instrumental?

In English and many European languages the instrumental is expressed with a preposition: I eat noodles with chopsticks. (But "with" is not dedicated to this function and has other uses such as the ...
0
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1answer
72 views

Thai basic day time-units [closed]

To ease my learning of Thai basic day time-units I have made the following chart consisting of these parts: Hour number in global enumeration Hour name in Thai General times of day for hour Specific ...
0
votes
1answer
327 views

Which language among South East Asia has the most and least loanwords from English? [closed]

Among different languages used in Southeast Asia, which language has the most and least loanwords from English in lexicon? In different languages, I assume Tagalog, Malay, Thai, Vietnamese. I know ...
0
votes
2answers
121 views

Does Vietnamese mười reflects the Thai/Lao/Khmer uu sound?

When I was in Vietnam I tried to pronounce the word mười (10) with the Thai/Lao/Khmer uu sound: Thai: ◌ู Lao: Khmer (ou): ូ Khmer (uə): ួ I recognized that sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn'...
0
votes
0answers
58 views

Are Vietnamese lệnh and Thai เลย related?

Are Vietnamese lệnh and Thai เลย related? If I understand correctly both words are vague in both languages in the sense that they can have various meanings depends on context but in general used as ...
0
votes
0answers
192 views

Genderless referral to a person as existent in Thai language

While learning Thai I came across something I never knew from other languages: The titles Khun (คุณ) and Than (ท่าน) while Than is said in down tone ('): Thai people would most often refer ...
-1
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4answers
7k views

Is Thai language related or a descendant of Sanskrit?

Why is the Thai language classified as Sino-Tibetan/Sino-Burmese when its script looks like Sanskrit to me?
-1
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1answer
309 views

How complex contour tones get in languages

So I have seen a few tonal languages, such as Thai, Mandarin Chinese, and Cantonese: I'm not too familiar with which other languages have tonal features. But I'm wondering if there are any ...
-1
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1answer
73 views

Politeness particles `krap`/`ka` [closed]

What is the original meaning of krap/ka politeness particles and what are their equivalents in Indo-European languages?
-1
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1answer
59 views

Language identification [closed]

Does this appear to be Thai to you? The script is on a piece of pottery a friend of mine found in the U.S. Thanks
-2
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2answers
461 views

Phonemes or allophones?

In our coursebook, introducing phonology by David Odden, one of the exercise questions asks us to decide if the obstruents of Thai are phonemes or allophones. My teacher says they are allophones but ...
-2
votes
1answer
158 views

Is there is a theory according to which both West Asian and East Asian form a sprachbund?

I have noticed that Southwest Asian Languages (SWAL) such as Arabic and Hebrew and Southeast Asian languages (SEAL) such as Thai and Vietnamese and maybe also others, tend to share usage of different ...
-2
votes
1answer
216 views

Is it true to say that in Thai languages past is default or generally guessed from context?

I understand that in Thai language (and perhaps other Thai Kra-Dai languages) there is no such thing as what I can name default past pattern in common/daily conversation, such as: I did or she did ...