Learn Thai with Fast Track Thai

Essential Grammar

Word Order

Basic Thai word order is subject + verb + object, just like in English. Adjectives come after the noun that they describe:

Chǎn mii jàkgràyaan mài.ฉันมีจักรยานใหม่I have a new bicycle.

Adverbs (words that qualify verbs) come after the verb that they qualify:

Khun phûut phaasǎa thai gèng jang.คุณพูดภาษาไทยเก่งจังYou speak Thai very well.

Ownership is expressed by stating the owner after the thing being owned:

The polite particle khráp/khâ is placed at the end of the sentence.

Word Omission

Either subject or object (or both) can be omitted when they have been established in the context, and omission does not result in a misunderstanding. The tendency to drop unnecessary words extends also to many other language constructs, which you'll encounter later.

Another thing to be aware of is that Thai adjectives can also act as verbs. E.g. the word sǔay can mean "beautiful" or "to be beautiful". Therefore, there is no need for a separate "to be" verb in sentences like:

Khun sǔay mâak.คุณสวยมากYou are very beautiful.

Tense

Verbs do not change form to indicate time (past/present/future). Instead, time is either implied by context; or expressed with other words, such as láew (past tense) or (future tense).

Plurality

Nouns do not have different forms for singular and plural. Plurality is either understood from context, or indicated by other constructs, such as by stating the number of items. For a few nouns, plurality can be expressed by repeating the noun:

Particles

Thai has many particles that change the feel of a sentence, but can't be directly translated. The most common ones are the polite particles khráp/khâ, and the softening particle .

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