Thai Written with Chinese Characters?

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Thai Written with Chinese Characters?

Postby sokuban » Mon 12 Sep 2011 4:05 am

Ok, so I was bored and randomly watching videos, then I came across this:

http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XNDg3NTMwOTY=.html

It is the Thai version (or at least I think it is the Thai version; I don't know what Thai sounds like so I can't be sure), but it is strangely subbed in Chinese Characters. The funny thing is, the characters seem to match!

I know Thai is another monosyllabic (I think) language closely related to Chinese (I think), so I figure it should be possible to write it in Chinese characters if you improvise hard enough, but I never have heard of such a practice ever before.

Is this really Thai written in Chinese? Is Thai ever/often written in Chinese in other contexts as well? What sort of system is used?

Thanks
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Re: Thai Written with Chinese Characters?

Postby sokuban » Mon 12 Sep 2011 6:06 am

One of my friends suggested it might be a simple phonetic transliteration into Cantonese, which seems likely after I sit down and think about it.

I guess it's boring then.
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Re: Thai Written with Chinese Characters?

Postby kaenif » Mon 12 Sep 2011 10:28 am

Thai is always the "victim" of transliteration into Cantonese, as they sound so alike, and some words that are normal in Thai may be funny or even vulgar in Cantonese.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIcc9Vsxrvk
This is an excerpt of a TV show in Hong Kong, in which Tony Jaa was invited to teach the words of colours in Thai. The hosts just started laughing uncontrollably (which is very rude IMO) when he said the words, as the words had very "unfortunate" meanings in Cantonese.

Colour, "see", means "s***" in Cantonese.
Sky blue, "see fa" means "s*** flower"
Green, "see keau" is literally "s*** bridge" which means "a bad idea"
Brown, "see nam dang" means "I don't give a f***"
Colourful, "lai lai see" sounds like "you s*** yourself"

It's very impolite to laugh at languages of other people, but Thai is just a natural "Buffalax language" for Cantonese. :? I wonder if it is also true in the other way round.

EDIT: Thai is in the Tai-Kadai language family, which is unrelated to Sinitic languages. They sound similar though.
Can you recognise this character?
Nope, it's not shāng. It is a 囧 with a hat which 囧ed its chin off!
囧囧囧囧囧囧囧囧囧!
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Re: Thai Written with Chinese Characters?

Postby spartacandream » Tue 13 Sep 2011 2:26 pm

Is a long distance relationship between Tai-Kadai and Sino-Tibetan likely?

I'm completely unfamiliar with the Tai-kadai languages, and sadly only know a handful of chinese phrases. I only know the characters that they share with the Japanese, well some of them.
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Re: Thai Written with Chinese Characters?

Postby ocowan » Wed 23 May 2012 11:14 am

Sea Fa means sh*** Flowers? ^^ why that? I actually love serenata flowers ltd so that seems a bit weird to me. :D where does this expression come from?
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Re: Thai Written with Chinese Characters?

Postby sokuban » Mon 02 Jul 2012 3:58 pm

Wow, this thread is old. Back then I didn't know Cantonese so much. Now I know quite a lot more; enough to understand the Thai jokes. (And I have heard them elsewhere too.)

The main thing about the "see" sounding like "sh**" is the tone. It uses a very distinctive rising tone, and just saying "see" alone plainly won't have any such meanings attached. Only thing is, Thai is also a tonal language, and the Thai word for colour also has such a rising tone.

One time I had got a Thai friend to say a bunch of words for me, and couldn't help laughing because Thai "see" really sounds like "sh**". I know it is sorta bad, but he was studying Cantonese too, so I'm sure he understood my feelings.
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