Below is the vocabulary list for lesson four of the Basic Course. The lesson introduces basic questions along with classroom objects. I’ve transcribed it as close as I was able to, notes below.
- 早晨 · dō sïn · good morning
- 該尼 · kwọi nāi · these, this
- 係 · hài · is, are, am, were, was
- 乜(野) · mōt (yẹ) · what?
- 嚀尼 · nịng nāi · those, that
- 乃尼 · nại nāi · which? every
- 該一尼 · kwọi yīt nāi · these, these ones
- 嚀一尼 · nịng yīt nāi · those, those ones
- 乃一尼 · nại yīt nāi · which? which ones?
- 書 · si · book
- 筆 · bīt · pen
- 部 · bù* · notebook, exercise book
- 椅 · ī · chair
- 紙 · jī · paper
- 枱 · họi* · table, desk
- 畫報 · wà bo* · magaine
- 再見 · doi gen / doi ging · good bye, see you again
- 該一 · kwọi yīt · this one
- 嚀一 · nịng yīt · that one
Some of these words seem to have no corresponding Chinese character. In the Basic Course, all the Chinese is handwritten, and the author used a character radical 口 to produce a corresponding word for Taishanese. Add 口 to 該 for kwọi “this” and to 乃 for nāi “some.” I wasn’t able to make new characters myself, so I adapted some of the characters used by Deng Jun (鄧鈞) in his Kaiping Dialect Character Dictionary (開平方音字典).
The word 尼 nāi is important to know. It corresponds to the Cantonese word 尐/啲 dī “some.” You use this word before plural nouns, like 我尼朋友 “my friends” or 我尼毛/頭髮 “my hair.” In quick speech, this word is often reduced to nā. Deng Jun transcribes this word with the character 尼, and I continue to do so here.
Tomorrow I’ll post the corresponding dialogue.