Basic Tamil Phrases: 20+ Most Useful Sentences

Are you aware that Tamil has the oldest literature among all the Dravidian languages? Learning basic Tamil phrases will help you understand the history, culture, and traditions of the language and the state.

Before we go any further, let’s take a look at some basic phrases to get you going: Do you speak English? Nīṅkaḷ āṅkilam pēcukiṟīrkaḷā? நீங்கள் ஆங்கிலம் பேசுகிறீர்களா? and Nice to meet you. Uṅkaḷai cantittatil makiḻcci. உங்களை சந்தித்ததில் மகிழ்ச்சி.

Tamil is the famous official language of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Because of its official status, this language has a special link with old Indian history. Tamil is also the classical language of India because of its ancient origin and independent tradition. 

However, regardless of their religious beliefs, all Tamils have contributed to Tamil culture and literature. Thus, knowledge of the language helps you better understand the state’s traditions. So, learning Tamil with Ling App offers wide access to art, including literature, music, and drama.

Tamil: A Dravidian Language

The Tamil language is a Dravidian language largely spoken by people in India. It is known as the official language of Tamil Nadu, an Indian state, and Puducherry, a union territory.

In addition, it is also one of the official languages of Sri Lanka, Singapore, Malaysia, Mauritius, Fiji, and South Africa. Tamil is spoken by around 66 million people in the early twenty-first century.

tamil phrases nice to meet you

Basic Tamil Phrases For Introducing Yourself  

If you plan to visit the world of cultures and traditions, you must consider going to India. Specifically, Tamil Nadu has a deep traditional history and literature.

There are formal and informal ways of introduction. 

You should speak Tamil formally with elders, but you can stay informed with Tamil speakers of your age. Keep the difference in mind when you talk to the older person as elders demand respect from youngsters.

 The most common introductory phrase that acts both formally and informally is “My name is…” “என் பெயர்…” “Eṉ peyar…” Some other introductory phrases that we use in everyday conversation are below.

English phrasesPronunciationTamil phrases
INaaṉநான்
Youநீ
Do you speak English?Nīṅkaḷ āṅkilam pēcukiṟīrkaḷā?நீங்கள் ஆங்கிலம் பேசுகிறீர்களா?
What is your name?Uṅkaḷ peyar eṉṉa?உங்கள் பெயர் என்ன?
My name is…Eṉ peyar…என் பெயர்…
Nice to meet you.Uṅkaḷai cantittatil makiḻcci.உங்களை சந்தித்ததில் மகிழ்ச்சி.
I am from…Nāṉ iruntu…நான் இhiருந்து…
tamil phrases good morning

Basic Greeting Words And Phrases In Tamil

Every traveler must know the common and basic Tamil phrases that can help greet Tamil friends. Such useful phrases assist you in starting the day. The first thing you should do when you greet Tamil people is to say “Good morning,” translated as “காலை வணக்கம்!” “Kālai vaṇakkam!” Learning Tamil basics is not difficult, so start speaking Tamil and practicing the new language. 

English phrasesPronunciationTamil phrases
Hi!Vaṇakkamவணக்கம்
Good morning!Kālai vaṇakkam!காலை வணக்கம்!
Good afternoon!Matiya vaṇakkam!மதிய வணக்கம்!
Good evening!Maalai vanakkam!மாலை வணக்கம்!
Good night!Iṉiya iravu!இனிய இரவு!
Welcome!Varavēṟpu!வரவேற்பு!
Thank you!Naṉṟi!நன்றி!
And you?Maṟṟum nīṅkaḷ?மற்றும் நீங்கள்?
Ok!Sari!சரி!
Hey friend!Ēy naṇparē!ஏய் நண்பரே!
See you later.Piṟaku cantippōm!பிறகு சந்திப்போம்!
tamil phrases for family

Some Basic Tamil Family Words And Phrases

If you are visiting a friend in Tamil Nadu, you will need to know the family words in Tamil. Do not make a mistake speaking English and sounding arrogant. Learn some basic family words like “Aunt” Tamil translation is “அத்தை” “Attai.”

Knowing only the basic phrases and talking at a slow speed is fine as Tamil is not your first language. But if you do some practice, you can give the answers to questions in the Tamil language. You will also learn to write Tamil in no time. Other family words and phrases in Tamil are below. 

English wordsPronunciationTamil words
MotherAmmaஅம்மா
FatherAppāஅப்பா
WifeMaṉaiviமனைவி
Elder sisterMūtta cakōtariமூத்த சகோதரி
Younger sisterIḷaiya cakōtariஇளைய சகோதரி
Elder brotherMūtta aṇṇaṉமூத்த அண்ணன்
Younger brotherIḷaiya cakōtararஇளைய சகோதரர்
AuntAttaiஅத்தை
She is my wife.Avaḷ eṉ maṉaivi.அவள் என் மனைவி.
I lost my mother.Eṉ tāyai iḻantēṉ.என் தாயை இழந்தேன்.
tamil phrases for help and direction

Useful And Basic Tamil Phrases For Help And Directions 

The basic helpful phrases and directions are important as they save you from getting lost in another country. So, learn them to make your journey safe and productive. Some direction phrases are below. 

English phrasesPronunciationTamil phrases
Can you help me?Nīṅkaḷ eṉakku utava muṭiyumā?நீங்கள் எனக்கு உதவ முடியுமா?
Where is the bathroom?Kuḷiyalaṟai eṅkē?குளியலறை எங்கே?
One moment, please!Oru kaṇam, tayavuceytu!ஒரு கணம், தயவுசெய்து!
Excuse me!Eṉṉai maṉṉiyuṅkaḷ!என்னை மன்னியுங்கள்!
Come with me.Eṉṉuṭaṉ vā!என்னுடன் வா!
Where is the restaurant?Uṇavakam eṅkuḷḷatu?உணவகம் எங்குள்ளது?
Can I talk to you?Nāṉ uṅkaḷiṭam pēcalāmā?நான் உங்களிடம் பேசலாமா?
Please bring a bill for my food.Tayavu ceytu eṉatu uṇavukkāṉa pil koṇṭu vāruṅkaḷ.தயவு செய்து எனது உணவுக்கான பில் கொண்டு வாருங்கள்.
common tamil phrases expressions

Common Tamil Expressions And Words

Use “Here you go” and “இதோ!” “Itō!” if you want to agree with something. Read the given Tamil expressions and words and explore the language. 

English phrasesPronunciationBasic Tamil words and phrases
Good!Nalla!நல்ல!
Today!Iṉṟu!இன்று!
Now!Ippōtu!இப்போது!
A shop!Oru kaṭai!ஒரு கடை!
Here you go!Itō!இதோ!
I really like it!Uṇmaiyilēyē nāṉ atai virumpukiṟēṉ!உண்மையிலேயே நான் அதை விரும்புகிறேன்!
I am hungry!Nāṉ haṅkēri!நான் ஹங்கேரி!
In the morning!Kālai poḻutil!காலை பொழுதில்!

Is Tamil Difficult To Learn? 

It is not difficult to learn the Tamil language. Tamil, however, is an interesting language to study because it has fewer letters than other Indian languages. Tamil, for example, contains only 12 vowels and 18 consonants, with a total of 247 letters. On the other hand, Telugu is an Indian language with over 500 letters. 

In addition, Tamil does not have any variant consonants. For example, in Tamil, you have to use only “Ka” to represent “Ka,” “Kha,” “Ga,” and “Gha.” Similarly, you use “Cha” to represent “Cha,” “Chha,” “Ja,” “Jha,” and so on. In conclusion, the Tamil script is simpler than other Indian scripts.

Thus, if you speak English, you can learn Tamil with enough practice and patience.

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Learn The Tamil Language With Ling!

Now that you know some basic Tamil phrases, you can communicate with locals and better survive in another country. As a result, if you want a more comprehensive understanding of Tamil, go to Ling app! With Ling app, you will not only learn basic Tamil phrases but also about learn Tamil vocabulary, grammar, and other important topics.

Ling app is a free application that allows you access to over 60+ different languages. It has experienced native language tutors from all around the world. Thus, these tutors can provide the best courses and content on language tips for beginners.

After learning the basics, you can jump to the intermediate or expert level. Moreover, the option of games and mini-quizzes is a key factor that provides fun learning. So, if you are ready to progress beyond simple and common phrases, start learning Tamil with Ling app now! It’s available on both iPhone and Android phones.

If you liked this, why not check out some app reviews, such as Hellotalk Vs. Pimsleur and iTalki Vs. Mondly.

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