A collection of useful phrases in Jamaican, an English-based creole with influences from languages of West and Central Africa spoken mainly in Jamaica.
Note: there is no standard way of spelling Jamaican, and there are different ways of writing many words.
Key to abbreviations: frm = formal, inf = informal, sg = singular (said to one person), pl = plural (said to more than one person).
|Phrase||Jimiekn / Patwah (Jamaican)|
|Hello (General greeting)||Ello
Waa gwaan? (What's going on?)
|Hello (on phone)|
|How are you?||Waa gwaan? (What's going on?)
Wat a guh dung? (What's going down?)
Weh yuh a seh? (What are you saying?)
How yuh stay? (How's your status?)
Howdeedo? (How do you do?)
How yu feeling?
|Reply to 'How are you?'||Everyting criss
Everyting cook an curry
All fruits ripe
Mi deh yah, everyting criss
Everyting cris n curri
|Long time no see||A long time mi nuh si yuh|
|What's your name?||Wah yuh name?|
|My name is ...||Mi name ...|
|Where are you from?||Frah wha pawt yuh deh?|
|I'm from ...||Mi deh ...|
|Pleased to meet you||Nice fi meet yuh|
|Good night||Gud nite|
|Mi gaan (I'm gone)
Likkle more den
Inna di morrows (In the tomorrows)
|Good luck!||Gud luck|
|Cheers! Good Health!
(Toasts used when drinking)
|Have a nice day|
|Bon appetit /
Have a nice meal
|Bon voyage /
Have a good journey
|I don't know||Mi nuh nuo|
|I don't understand||Mi nuh undastand|
|Please speak more slowly|
|Please say that again|
|Please write it down|
|Do you speak English?||Do yuh speak english?|
|Do you speak Jamaican?||Do yuh speak Patwah?
Yuh know how fi chat Patwah?
|Yes, a little
(reply to 'Do you speak ...?')
|Speak to me in Jamaican|
|How do you say ... in Jamaican?|
|Excuse me||Jus a word
Beg yuh pass (Can I pass?)
|How much is this?||Oomuch fi dis?|
|Please||A beg yuh|
|Reply to thank you|
|Where's the toilet / bathroom?||Weh ah de bawtroom?|
|This gentleman will pay for everything|
|This lady will pay for everything|
|Would you like to dance with me?|
|Do you come here often?|
|I miss you||Mi miss yuh|
|I love you||Mi luv yuh|
|Get well soon|
|Leave me alone!||Galang!|
|Call the police!||Call di police!|
|Christmas greetings||Merri crissmuss|
|New Year greetings||Appy new year|
|Easter greetings||Happy easta|
|Birthday greetings||Happy earthstrong
|One language is never enough||One language neva enuff|
|My hovercraft is full of eels|
If you would like to make any corrections or additions to this page, or if you can provide recordings, please contact me.
Other collections of Jamaican phrases
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