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How to tell what consonant to use at the end
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  1. #1
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    How to tell what consonant to use at the end

    So I was wondering if there was a easy way to know what letter to use at the end of a word.
    For example if it ends with a dt sound, how can I tell what consonant I should use?,,,,,,,...

    Or is this just memorisation?

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    Re: How to tell what consonant to use at the end

    I am sorry this is long, perhaps it will be of value to you.. Believe me it reads more complicated than it is to use in real life.

    The short answer to your question IS: you can't know 100% what the ending consonant will be with anything except syllables or words that end in (NG), (M), (Y) or (W). Those ending sounds only have a single character.

    As you can see from what follows, IF a thai syllable has a D ending sound there are actually 16 possible consonants which can come at the end and will make the D ending sound!!!

    BTW: (no matter what you hear or how you're being taught); no thai words make a T or a DT sound at the end. That ending sound is taught to thais as a D ending. Even though sometimes it's written with a T in karaoke (writing thai sounds with english characters) it's still really pronounced as a D. This is also why sometimes if you ask a thai "does that end in a T", they look confused because they learned NO words end in a T, to them they all end in a D instead.

    Okay, here's how it works:

    There are 8 ways a thai syllable or word can end. They are broken down into groups. Three of the groups are "dead endings" (a final stop consonant sound) and five of the groups are "live endings" (a sonorant consonant sound).

    Here's the groups, the ending sounds they make and the consonants in those groups that make the same sound when they end a syllable or word;

    衡 - G () dead ending - , , ,
    衧 - NG () live ending -
    衴 - D () dead ending - , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
    衹 - N () live ending - , , , , ,
    衺 - B () dead ending - , , , ,
    - M () live ending -
    - Y () live ending -
    - W () live ending

    There is also another word ending protocol and it is for "open" syllables or words. That's the ones that have NO final consonant. It's called

    Like I said, what it really comes down to is, you have to memorize how thai words are spelled. There's almost no way you can "guess" the correct ending consonant for those groups which have multiple consonants making the same ending sound..

    This link shows how they're broken down
    http://www.thai-language.com/ref/consonant-endings

    Good luck, again sorry that was oh-so long..

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    Re: How to tell what consonant to use at the end

    It seems to me that "everyday" words are pretty likely to end in , or . More literary and Sanskrit-derived type words would be a guessing game. I'm just a newb though. Any truth to this observation?

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    Re: How to tell what consonant to use at the end

    Thanks for the help guys!

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    Re: How to tell what consonant to use at the end

    Quote Originally Posted by tempogain View Post
    It seems to me that "everyday" words are pretty likely to end in , or . More literary and Sanskrit-derived type words would be a guessing game. I'm just a newb though. Any truth to this observation?
    You're correct, "real thai words" will almost all end in the "base ending consonant" for a group..

    Unfortunately the thai language as it exists today is a hodge-podge of original thai, chinese, pali, sanskrit, cambodian and now a TON of english words too.

    It's not as cut and dried as you might think guessing the ending consonants.

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