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Khmer phrasebook

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Khmer phrasebook

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Khmer is the main and official language of Cambodia.


Pronunciation guide[edit]

Knowing a few Khmer words will help you earn some respect while in Cambodia.

  • If you are male the word for 'yes' is pronounced 'baht'(បាទ) as in the sound of a sheep followed by a hard T.
  • If you are female the word for 'yes' is pronounced 'jah'(ចា) as in the first part of 'jar'.
  • The word for 'no' is pronounced 'Awt Tay'(អត់ទេ/ទេ).
  • The word for 'thank you' is pronounced 'aw-koon'(អរគុណ) sounds a little like raccoon.
  • To express greater thanks (thank you very much), use the word 'aw-koon ch'ran'(អរគុណច្រើន).
  • The word for 'hello' is pronounced 'Sues-Day" Sues is pronounced exactly like author Dr. Seuss
  • The word for 'sorry' is pronounced 'somtoh'(សុំទោស).
  • The word for 'toilet' is pronounced 'dakuhn' or 'pahkuhn'(បង្គន់/បន្ទប់ទឹក)) Similarly to how you would pronounce the kunh in thank you, but with a short 'ba' in front.
  • Scooter/mopeds with carriages pulled behind are called a 'tuk-tuk'(តុកតុក) better pronounced with the U sound from the back of your throat, like tulk-tulk.
  • Scooter/mopeds by themselves are pronounced 'moto'(ម៉ូតូ) with an emphasis on 'mo'.
  • Rickshaws are called 'cyclo'(ស៊ីក្លូ). The cy is pronounced like the word see.
Khmer script

Vowels[edit]

ា aa ia ិ e i ី ey ee ឹ u ugh ឺ eu ugghhh (gugh) ុ o u ូ oo uu ួ ooa ើ ar er (yeurng) ឿ ugh ៀ eagh (rein) េ a ey (gei) ែ ie ayy ៃ ai ighe ោ ow oew (geu) ៅ ou ough (nough) ុំ om ំ om ាំ um ះ ah ិះ eh ុះ oh េះ eh ោះ oh

Consonants[edit]

ក ka​​​ ខ kha គ ko ឃ kho ង ngo ច ca ឆ cha ជ co ឈ cho ញ ño ត ta ថ thaa ទ to ធ thoo ន no ដ da ឋ tha ឌ do ឍ tho ណ na ប Ba ផ pha ព po ភ Pho ម mo យ yo រ ro ល lo វ Wo ស sa ហ ha ឡ la អ aa

Common diphthongs[edit]

Phrase list[edit]

Basics[edit]

Common signs

OPEN 
CLOSED 
beut
ENTRANCE 
chaul
EXIT 
PUSH 
chomrounh
PULL 
tieng
TOILET 
bantub dakk
MEN 
broh
WOMEN 
satrey
FORBIDDEN 
hahmkoat


Hello. (formal
ជំរាបសួរ (chum reap suor)
should be combined with the gesture of joining your palms in front of your heart and slightly lowering the head
Hello. (informal
សួស្ដី (sous-dey)
Hello? (answering the phone
Allô ? cf. Fr.
How are you? (formal
តើលោកសុខសប្បាយជាទេ ? (tae lohk sokh sabbay chea teh?)
How are you? (informal
សុខសប្បាយជាទេ ? (sokh sabbay chea teh?)
Fine, thank you. 
ចា៎/បាទ ខ្ញុំសុខសប្បាយ អរគុណ (chah (f.)/baht (m.) khñom sokh sabbay. orkun.)
What is your name? (formal
លោកមានឈ្មេះថាមេ៉ច ? (lohk mean chmuah tah much?)
What is your name? (informal
អ្នកឈ្មេះអី ? (neak chmuah ay?)
My name is ______. 
ខ្ញុំឈ្មេះ ___ (khñomm chmuah _____.)
Nice to meet you. 
ខ្ញុំ​ត្រេក​អរណាស់​ដែលបាន​ស្គាល់​លោក (khñom trawk or nah dael bahn skoal lohk)
Please. 
សូម (soum)
Thank you. 
អរគុណ (orkun)
Thank you much. 
អរគុណឆ្រើន (orkun cheraown)
Welcome 
សូមស្វាគមន៍ (soum swa-kumm)
You're welcome. 
អត់អីទេ/សូម​អញ្ជើញ (mun ay te or soum uñjaowñ)
No problem. 
អត់បញ្ហាទេ (Ort bañe-hah teh)
Yes. 
ចា៎ (chah female) បាទ (baht male)
No. 
អត់ទេ (ort teh)
Male 
ប្រុស (proh)
Female 
ស្រី (srey)
Child 
ក្មេង (kmaing)
Excuse me/I'm sorry 
សំទោស (somm toh)
Goodbye (formal
ជំរាបលា (chum reap leah)
Goodbye (informal
លាសិនហើយ (leah sin houwy)
I can't speak Khmer. 
ខ្ញុំអត់ចេះភាសាខ្មែរទេ (khñomm ort cheh piasah khmaaer teh)
Do you speak English? 
អ្នកចេះភាសាអង់គ្លេសទេ ? (neak cheh piasah ongkleh baan teh?)
Is there someone here who speaks English? 
មានម្នកណាចេះភាសាអង់គ្លេសទេ ? (meean m'neak na cheh piasah ongkleh teh?)
I am going to work 
ខ្ញុំទៅធ្វើការ (khñom dtouw twer gahr)
Help! 
ជួយ​ខ្ញុំ​ផង! (chewy khñom pawng!)
Bad 
អត់ល្អ (ort la'or)
Good morning. 
អរុណសួស្ដី (arunn sous-dey)
Good afternoon. 
ទិវាសួស្ដី (tiveah sous-dey )
Good evening. 
សាយ័ណ្ហសួស្ដី (sayoan sous-dey )
Good night. 
រាត្រីសួស្តី (reatrey sous-dey)
I don't understand. 
មិនយល់ទេ (min yuall teh)
Where is the toilet? 
បន្ទប់ទិក​នៅ​ឯណា? (bantub dakk noew ay nah?)
Happy Birthday! 
រីករាយថ្ងៃខួបកំណើត (reek reay thgnai khom-naowt)

Problems[edit]

Numbers[edit]

Although Khmer uses base-10 numbers, the numbers for 1-9 are effectively spoken as base-5. Thus, six (prahm muay) literally means five (prahm), one (muay); whereas sixteen (dahp prahm muay) is ten (dahp), five (prahm), one (muay).

In practice, the word 'sep' is often omitted from the numbers for 30-90. However, it is generally considered more proper to include the word.

0  
០ – សូន្យ (soan)
1  
១ – មួយ (muay)
2  
២ – ពីរ (bee)
3  
៣ – បី (bei)
4  
៤ – បួន (buan)
5  
៥ – ប្រាំ (prahmm)
6  
៦ – ប្រាំមួយ (prahmmmuay)
7  
៧ – ប្រាំពីរ (prahmmbee)
8  
៨ – ប្រាំពី (prahm bei)
9  
៩ – ប្រាំបួន (prahm buan)
10 
១០ – ដប់ (dahp)
20 
២០ (ma'pei)
30 
៣០ (sam sep)
40 
៤០ (sae sep)
50 
៥០ (haa sep)
60 
៦០ (hok sep)
70 
៧០ (chet sep)
80 
៨០ (paet sep)
90 
៩០ (kao sep)
100 
១០០ (muay roy)
1,000 
១.០០០ (muay poan)
10,000 
១០.០០០ (muay meun)
100,000 
១០០.០០០ (muay saen)
1,000,000 
១.០០០.០០០ (muay liean)

Time[edit]

Time 
(Maong)

Clock time[edit]

What time is it? 
(Maong bon maan?)
Maong mouy t'ngai (day) 
(1 pm)
Maong mouy yop (night) 
(1 am)

Duration[edit]

Hour 
(Maong)
Minute 
(Neatii)

Days[edit]

Day 
(T'ngai) (ថ្ងៃ)
One day 
(Mouy t'ngai) (១ ថ្ងៃ)
Monday 
(Chhan) (ច័ន្ទ)
Tueday 
(Angkea) (អង្គារ)
Wednesday 
(Pout) (ពុធ)
Thursday 
(Pra-hoah) (ព្រហស្បត្តិ៍)
Friday 
(Sok) (សុក្រ)
Saturday 
(Sao) (សៅរ៍)
Sunday 
(A-thut) (អាទិត្យ)
what day is it today? 
("T'ngai nih chea T'ngai a vey?") (ថ្ងៃនេះជាថ្ងៃអ្វី?)
Today is Friday. 
("T'ngai nih chea T'ngai Sok") (ថ្ងៃនេះជាថ្ងៃសុក្រ។)

Months[edit]

Year 
(Chnam)
Month 
(Khae)
January 
(Makara)
February 
(Kompheak)
March 
(Meneah)
April 
(Meysah)
May 
(Osaphea)
June 
(Maytona)
July 
(Kakada)
August 
(Seyha)
September 
(Kanya)
October 
(Tola)
November 
(Vicheka)
December 
(Thnou)

Colors[edit]

Color 
(Phoa)
Red 
(Phoa Krahom)
Blue 
(Phoa Khiev)
Yellow 
(Phoa Loeung)
White 
(Phoa Saw)
Black 
(Phoa Khmao)
Green 
(Phoa Bai Thong)
Orange 
(Phoa Teuk Kroit)
Pink 
(Phoa Pkah Chouk)
Purple 
(Phoa Swai)
Brown 
(Phoa Thnout)​
Silver 
(Phoa Prahk)
Gold 
(Phoa Meas)

Transportation[edit]

Ride 
(Chis)
Car 
(Lanh)
Auto rickshaw 
(Tuk Tuk)

Bus and train[edit]

Train 
(Ah-teh-plerng)

Directions[edit]

Stop 
(Choup)
Turn 
(Bot)
Right 
(Sa-dahm)
Left 
(Ch-wang)
Straight 
(Throng)
Backward 
(K'roy)

Taxi[edit]

Accommodation[edit]

Pthaes - house

Pthaes knyom- my house

dtoh pthaes kynom- go to my house

Money[edit]

Money 
ប្រាក់ (brak) or លុយ (Loiy)
Cambodian Riel (KHR) (៛) 
លុយខ្មែរ (Loiy khmaer) or រៀល (rial)
Euro (EUR) (€) 
ប្រាក់អឺរូ (brak oeroo) or លុយបារាំង (Loiy barang)
US-Dollar (USD) ($) 
ដុល្លារ (dollaar')
Where can I find an ATM? 
អេធីអឹម មាននៅឯណា? (A-Tee-Em mean nou ey na?)
currency exchange 
ប្ដូរលុយ (ptour loiy)
How much does it cost? 
ថ្លៃបុ៉ន្មាន ? (tlay bonmaan?)
costy 
ថ្លៃ (thlay)
affordable 
ថោក (cheap)
Wouldn't you rather sell it for _____ ? 
_____ បានទេ ? ( _____ baan teh?)

Eating[edit]

Eat 
(Nham)
Food 
(Mahop)
Rice 
(Bai)

Bars[edit]

Do you serve ____? 
នៅកន្លែងនេះមាន____ទេ ? (now gonlaeng nih mee-an ____ teh?)
One glass of ____, please. 
សូម____មួយកែវ (Soum ____ muoi geao.)
One more, please. 
សូមមួយទៀត (Soum moi ti-at)
Rice wine 
ស្រា (sraah)
Beer 
ស្រាបៀរ (sraah bière)
Cocktails/Longdrinks 
ស្រាលាយ (sraah lee-ay)
Cheers! 
ជល់មួយ (choul mouy)
May I have the Bill/Check, please. 
សូមគិតលុយ ! (Soum git loi!)
He's drunk (on ____ ) 
គាត់ស្រវឹង ( ___ ) (Ko-at sraw vung ( ____ ).)
Call an ambulance! 
ជួយ​ហៅ​រថយន្តសង្គ្រោះ​មក (chewy how rot yondawsangkroh maok!)

Shopping[edit]

Buy
Tinh
Sell
Luhk
Money
Brak
I want to buy...": Kh'nom chong tinh...

Driving[edit]

baok (to drive) lanh (car)

Authority[edit]

Teacher 
(Kru)
High authority, generally monks 
(Lok)
Husband, Older Relative/Friend 
(Bong)
Wife, Younger Relative/Friend 
(Oun)
Relative that is older than your parents/your little brother and little sister kids
(Oum)
Uncle 
(Pu)
Your kids call your little sister Aunty/girl who are younger then you
(Ming)
Your kids call your little sister Aunty that carry Chinese bloodline
(Eee)
Grandma 
(Yeay)
Grandpa 
(Ta)
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