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Lesson Transcript

สวัสดีค่ะ, ดิฉันปรารถนาค่ะ! Welcome to Thaipod101.com’s ตัวอักษรไทย Made Easy!
The fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn the Thai alphabet: ตัวอักษรไทย!
In the last lesson you learned the letters ผ and ฝ, and the vowels สระ เอือะ and สระ เอือ. Do you remember how to write them all?
In this lesson, you’re going to learn about a very important high class consonant that is used to change the class of other consonants.
This is the letter ห (hǎaw hìip). It's named after the word หีบ (hìip), which means "trunk" or "chest". ห makes the sound "h" as an initial consonant, like the H in "Hello". It isn't used as a final consonant.
ห looks a little bit like a capital letter H, so that might help you associate its shape with its sound.
Let's practice writing ห. Get out your pen, and follow along.
Start with the head. Go down, up diagonally. Make a loop, and down.
Let's learn a new pair of vowels to make a word with ห.
These are the vowels สระ อัวะ (sà-rà ùa) and สระ อัว (sà-rà uua). They make the vowel sound อัว (uua), which is like a combination of อู (uu) and อะ (à).
When it has no final consonant following it, สระ อัว is written using ไม้หันอากาศ over the consonant and ว to the right of it.
We can make it into the short vowel สระ อัวะ by also adding สระ อะ to the right of that.
Okay, time to write them:
สระ อัวะ (sà-rà ùa), สระ อัว (sà-rà uua).
Here is the word หัว (hǔua) which means "head". It is written with ห as the initial consonant, then it has ไม้หันอากาศ and ว making up the vowel สระ อัว.
ห, ไม้หันอากาศ and ว to make สระ อัว ...หัว
หัว is said with a rising tone because it has a high class initial consonant with a live syllable ending.
สระ อัว has to be written differently when it has a final consonant following it. In that case, we just write it as the letter ว sandwiched between the initial and final consonants. For example, here is the word สวน (sǔuan), which means garden.
It has the initial consonant ส, the vowel สระ อัว written using ว, and the final consonant น.
Okay, your turn:
ส, สระ อัว using ว, น... สวน
สวน has a rising tone because it has a high class initial consonant combined with a live syllable ending.
Let's look at ห again because it's a very important letter. It can also be used to make low class consonants act like high class consonants. In this case, it will act like a silent letter that makes the *next* letter follow the tone rules for high class initial consonants.
To do this, we put it right in front of an initial low class consonant.
For example, here is the word หมี (mǐi), which means "bear". It starts with ห, but the real initial consonant is ม.
The word หมี is said with a rising tone, but ม is a low class consonant, and there is no tone rule that lets low class consonants make a rising tone on their own. So it has to team up with a silent ห to get the job done.
Let's write หมี together.
Start with a silent ห, then ม, and the vowel สระ อี... หมี
There's one other tone, besides the rising tone, that low class consonants can't make on their own. Do you know which one it is?
Let's review the tone rules to find out.
The tone rules for syllables with low class initial consonants are:
With a live ending, it's a mid tone.
With a dead ending and short vowel, it's a high tone.
And with a dead ending and long vowel, it's a falling tone.
So on their own, low class consonants can't make rising tone or low tone.
But with the help of ห, they can make both tones.
Here is an example of ห helping to make a low tone. This is the word หลอด (làawt), which means "straw". The initial consonant is ล, which makes a sound like the letter L. อ is acting as the vowel สระ ออ, and the final consonant ด is making a T-stop, which is a dead ending. If we didn't have ห the word would be a falling tone. But the silent ห out front makes ล act like a high class consonant. Then we follow the rule: High class initial consonant with a dead ending makes a low tone.
So, หลอด is said with a low tone.
One last word to write this lesson!
ห, ล, อ, ด... หลอด
Now it's time for Pradthana’s Points.
Thai has many compound words that are made up of 2 or more short words. Because we don't put space between words, you might think a compound word is actually two short words that mean something else. For example, ผี (phǐi) means "ghost", and เสื้อ (sûuea) means "shirt". But together, ผีเสื้อ (phǐi-sûuea) doesn't mean "ghost shirt" -- it means "butterfly". So if you think you know all the words in a sentence, but it doesn't seem to make sense, check with a Thai dictionary to see if any of the words are forming a compound word that you didn't know about.
Have you ever heard the Thai word ภูเขา (phuu-khǎo)? In the next ตัวอักษรไทย Made Easy Lesson you'll learn what it means, and most of all, how to write it! See you there! สวัสดีค่ะ!

41 Comments

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ThaiPod101.com Verified
Friday at 06:30 PM
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What Thai words can you write using ห (The class-changing hǎaw hìip), อัวะ (Short ua), or อัว (Long ua)?

ThaiPod101.com Verified
Wednesday at 02:23 PM
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Hello Choib,


Thank you. No that is not correct ไม้หันอากาศ is from "sa-ra ะ" วัน ฉัน จันทร์ while "sa-ra uua วั in the middle ไม้หันอากาศ will disappear and only ว is left. สวย รวย ด้วย and ัวะ(rare) is a short version of ัว it does not change. Hope that helps. Please let me know if you have any future questions. I will be glad to help.


Have a good day.

ปริษา Parisa

Team ThaiPod101.com

Choib
Saturday at 11:49 AM
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hello there!

if sara-uua is in the middle of the of the word,ไม้หันอากาศ is not written thus leaving waaw wen alone.but how about the short version,sara-ua?does it change or sara-a is still written after that?


thank you!

ThaiPod101.com Verified
Sunday at 11:34 PM
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Hello Syaz,


Thank you. Yes, ห will be silent when it is follow by "m /n /ng/ y/ w" letter sound in low class consonants. In front of middle class it will not be silent, like หก , check out a bit more here. http://www.thai-language.com/ref/double-consonants

Hope that’s helpful. Please let me know if you have any future questions. I will be glad to help.


Have a good day.

ปริษา Parisa

Team ThaiPod101.com

Syaz
Friday at 04:21 PM
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Hello! I just wanna confirm, ห will be silent and make the next letter to follow high class IS only for low-class consonants? What happen if it's placed before mid-class consonants?


Thank you!

ThaiPod101.com Verified
Sunday at 02:44 PM
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Hello Ghaniy,


Thank you for comment. straw (หลอด) are you referring to straw that use for drinking. In Thailand most cow ate in the filed and we used different word for "fodder straw" for cow to eat. Hope that helps. Please feel free to let me know if you have questions. I will be glad to help.


Have a nice day.

ปริษา Parisa

Team ThaiPod101.com

Ghaniy
Friday at 05:13 AM
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Hello there!


I've been wondering what straw (หลอด) are you referring to. the tool kind of straw that you use for drinking, or the fodder kind of straw that cow eats?


thanks😄

ThaiPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 03:54 PM
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Hello Florence,


Thank you. haaw hìip is high class consonant so tone will be follow by this order, class of consonant , tone mark(if there is), life or dead syllable ending consonants and short or long vowel in the syllable (if there is no ending syllable). Practice this principle with some word like our example:

หลอด หีบ หัก dead ending = low tone

หัว หาย หลาย หนา หวย life ending = rising tone

ห้า หน้า ห้าม (maai-too tone mark) = falling tone

ห่า ห่ม ห่วย (maai-eek tone maark) = low tone

Hope that's help. Please let me know if you have any future questions. I will be glad to help.


Have a good day.

Parisa

Team ThaiPod101.com

Florence
Friday at 06:21 AM
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When haaw hìip is there, how do you know what tone that silible will be?

ThaiPod101.com Verified
Thursday at 10:39 PM
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Hello Blythe,


Thank you for comment. ห is not used as a consonant cluster, it can be used not only as a silent letter. ห it could make sound "h" by itself as in examples ห้า หก หาย ห้าม หิ้ว หาบ . If ห is used in front of ง ญ น ย ณ ร ว ม ล as one syllable it would appear silent no matter with any vowels. หน้า หนึ่ง หญ้า หรอก หลาบ หงาย Hope that's help. Please let me know if you have any future questions. I will be glad to help.


Have a good day.

Parisa

Team ThaiPod101.com

Blythe
Wednesday at 06:52 PM
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😮 I was wondering if ห is ever used to make a cluster consonant, or is it always silent when put in front of a low class consonant with no obvious vowels?


Thank you 😄