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Tibetans have their own language, in both spoken and written forms. According to geographical divisions, it has three major local dialects: Weizang, Kang and Amdo. The Tibetan script, an alphabetic system of writing, was created in the early 7th century AD. With four vowels and 30 consonants, it is used in all areas inhabited by Tibetans.

The strict social caste system was manifested even in the use of language. The Tibetan language has three major forms of expression: the most respectful, the respectful and the everyday speech, to be used respectively to one's superiors, one's peers and one's inferiors.

The Tibetan language and customs are enjoying respect and the outstanding heritage of Tibetan culture has been carried forward.

Tibetans are friendly and humorous people. This introduction of Tibetan language may help you in setting up unforgettable relationship with Tibetan people.

Pronunciation

The vowel "a" must be pronounced like the "a" in father-soft and long, unless it appears as ay, in which cast it is pronounced as in say or day. Note that words beginning with either b or p, d or t and g or k are pronounced halfway between the normal pronunciation of these constant pairs (e.g., b or p), and they are aspirated, like words starting with an h. A slash through a letter indicates the neural vowel sound uh.

Word Order

Simple Tibetan sentences are constructed as follows:
Subject --Object --Verb
The verb is always last.

Verb Tenses

Tibetan verbs are composed of two parts: the root, which carries the meaning of the verb, and the ending, which indicates the tense (past, present or future). The simplest and most common verb form, consisting of the root plus the ending-ge ray, can be used for the present and future tenses. The root is strongly accented in speech. In order to form the past tense, substitute the ending -song.

Only the verb roots are given in this glossary and please remember to add the appropriate endings.

Useful words and sayings in Tibetan language
Tashi Delek....... A Tibetan greeting Kusu dewo?........ how are you?
Pala.............. father Amala............. mother
Acha.............. sister Cho-cho........... brother
zakhang........... restaurant Thu-chi-che....... thank you
paar.............. picture gawo.............. love
Nyima............. Sunday Dawa.............. Monday
Mingma............ Tuesday Lhakpa............ Wednesday
Phurbu............ Thursday Pasang............ Friday
Pemba............. Saturday tashi deleg............Hello
kah-leh phe............. Good-bye thu-je--che............Thank You
kay-nang-gi-ma-ray.............You're Welcome kyok-tsenanda............ Excuse Me
gong-dhaa.............I'm Sorry thu-je zig / ku-chee.............Please
yag-po zhe daa............. Very good rey, yin, dhoo.............Yes
ma-rey, meyn, min-dhoo .............No ngu-ney.............Is it really??
tashi deleh ............. Good luck jay-la jay- yong............. See you later
 
     
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