Thai self-study language courses for download

Thai is the official language of Thailand. Thai is a part of the Tai language family who's origins are disputed, but certain linguists place it in the larger group called Tai-Kauai language. Thai, which is spoken by 46-50 million people has a relatively simple grammar without any word inflections, where for example tense and plural inflections do not exist. On the other hand every syllable in the language has one of five phonemically distinguishable tones (like musical notes) low notes, high notes, middle notes as well as falling and rising notes. For a westerner, this might be difficult to learn the pronunciation, because phonemic tones do not exist in European languages (even if some, like Swedish and Norwegian have a distinctive accent in some two syllable words, like Anden (meaning the bird duck) and Anden (meaning then nursery rhyme spirit).
In transcription some symbols placed above the vowels show which tone the syllable has. Thai is written with an alphabet that probably derives from the older Khmer script, which in turn is a Brahmin writing system in the Indian writing language group. Modern Thai writing has 44 consonants,(older Thai used to have 46 consonants) which represents 21 distinct consonant sounds and a number of vowel letters which are combined to achieve the vowel and diphthong extant in the language. Apart from that, there are four tone tags and three other special symbols for repeats, abbreviation and so on.



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