Turkish (Türkçe) is the most widely-spoken of the Turkic languages and is the official language of the Republic of Turkey - as well as being the most useful language in Turkish-ruled northern Cyprus. Outside of Turkey itself, knowledge of Turkish is helpful in several neighbouring countries including Azerbaijan. While the Central Asian "stans" speak Turkic languages, the similarities between Kazakh and Turkish (for example) are only very rudimentary.
Unlike many languages, Turkish forms words by a process known as "agglutination", where prefixes and suffixes are attached to words to mark different parts of speech and so on. Thus, an English phrase such as "I am an Australian" is rendered in Turkish with the one word "Avustralyalıyım - Avustralya-lı-y-ım".
Turkish pronunciation looks daunting to non-native speakers, as many of the words are very long and look like tongue-twisters. With a bit of practice, however, it becomes much easier.
The Turkish vowels are
A - a short sound, as in the English car
E - a short sound, as in the English pet
İ - the sound in the English hit and at the beginning of İstanbul
I - a "neutral" sound with no real equivalent in English. The closest sound is the "uh" which replaces the "e" in the second syllable of open
O - as in the English order
Ö - pronounced as in German, a blend of "o" and "e"
U - short as in the English put
Ü - pronounced as in German, a blend of "u" and "e"
Remember that, in lower case, the two letters İ and I look different as well. The lower case form of İ is i, while the lower case form of I is ı.
B - as in bed
C - pronounced as the initial letter in the English jump
Ç - the "ch" sound in the English chapel
D - as in drum
F - as in far
G - as in girl
Ğ - a silent letter, which serves to lengthen the previous vowel
H - as in hello
J - pronounced as in the French name Jean
K - as in king
L - as in love
M - as in man
N - as in new
P - as in print
R - as in run
S - as in snake
Ş - the "sh" sound in the English shake
T - as in take
V - roughly the mid-point between the "v" in very and the "w" in was
Y - as in yet
Z - as in zoo'
Merhaba. (mehr hah bah)
Selam. (sell um)
How are you? (polite)
Nasılsınız (na suhl suhn uhz)
Fine, thank you.
İyiyim, teşekkürler. (ee yee yeem teh shek ür lerr)
What is your name? (polite)
Adınız ne? (ad uhn uhz ne)
My name is ______ .
Benim adım ______ . ( Benn im ad uhm _____ .)
Nice to meet you.
Memnun oldum. (mem noon oll doom)
Lütfen. (Luet fen)
Teşekkür ederim. (teh shek uer eh der eem)
Bir şey değil. (Bir shey de yeel)
is/are there (any/some) ____?
____ varmi (var muh?)
no / there isn't any
Yok (yock) usually said with a upward movement of chin and eyebrows