Language Lesson

Language Lesson: India

Language Lessons: India

By: Hannah Tirzah Shunker, East India Country Director's Assistant   |   Posted: October 03, 2005

The languages spoken in India are as varied as its people. Officially, there are 14 languages in India. But thankfully, communication is never a big problem either in Chennai or in Kolkata because many people speak in English and are always willing to help. In Chennai, Tamil is as commonly spoken as English. Not many people speak in Hindi in Tamil Nadu. In Kolkata and in the rural areas of the West Bengal state, Bengali is the official language. Hindi is also widely spoken.

Here are the Bengali translations for some of the most commonly used questions and answers.

What is you name?: Tomar naam ki?

My name is ... : Amar naam _______

How are you?: Kamon Acho?

I am fine.: Aami bhalo Achi.

Nice to meet you.: Aapna shonge dakha kore bhalo laglo.

Thank you.: Dhonobad.

water: jall (pronounce it as you would say "ball")

Jesus loves you.: Jeeshu aapna ke bhalo bashen.

Included also are some commonly used Tamil phrases/words.

What is your name?: Unga peyer enna?

My name is ...: En peyer _______.

How are you?: Neenga eppadi irukeenga?

I am fine.: Naan nalla irukirane.

Nice meeting you.: Ungalai paarthadilae romba santhosham.

Thank you.: Nandr.

water: thanni

food: saapadu

milk: paal

Jesus loves you.: Yesu unnai nesikirar.

elder sister: akka

younger sister: thangachi

elder brother: anna

younger brother: thambi

father: appa

mother: amma

house: veedu

shop: kadai

male: aann

female: penn

son: magan

daughter: magal

dog: naai

cat: poonai

goat: aadu

cow: maadu

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