6+ Tamil Question Words: Your Inquisitive Cheat-sheet

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To have great conversations, you will need to ask some questions. And to help you get on with this, we have some Tamil question words in this post that you can use to spice up your sentences. Fortunately, Tamil questions or words in interrogative form can be comical, so we bet you’ll find this topic easy to remember! So without further ado, let’s look at some examples for you below!

In language, the manner in which you speak is also important to note. For example, pointing and asking questions may differ depending on who you are communicating with. In the Philippines, for example, the locals may point using their finger or their lips! Yes! No need for words! The same can be said when you are in India, as the locals also use non-verbal signals.

However, we cannot just rely on our body language when communicating, right? For this reason, learning how to phrase sentences in polite and casual ways can certainly help. That is even more crucial to remember when you are thinking about formulating interrogatives in Tamil. To help you out in this aspect, keep reading below!

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Tamil Question Words

The Tamil Language

Here are some interesting facts about the Tamil language. It is the oldest living language. It is a UNESCO-approved classical language. A temple holds a goddess called “Tamil Thai,” which symbolizes the language of the Mother Tamil goddess. There are also wonderful meanings of the language itself, such as natural, beautiful, and sweet.

Spoken in several countries, Tamil literature and poetry are also highly respected. Leaders of India refer to Tamil and other Indian languages, such as Bengali and Sanskrit, as the pride of India, which carries the rich culture and heritage of this great nation.

Tamil Question Words

Before using a question word, refer to the person with a greeting. One group for people older that you can be referred to as “sir” ஐயா Aiyā and “madam” அம்மையீர் Am’maiyīr; you can refer to those younger than you as “kid” குழந்தை kulanti. A few groups are pretty relaxed in this area, including your peers and friends or maybe family, both younger and other than yourself.

There are different types of questions in the Tamil language. Here are the basic categories:

EnglishTamilPronunciationSound
Questions to clarify doubts ஐயவினா Aiya Vina
Questions for answers that are already known அறிவினாAri Vina
Questions for answers that are unknown அறியாவினா Ariyaa Vina
Inquiry questions கொளல்வினா Kolal Vina
Questions for needs கொடைவினா Kodai Vina
Questions for giving direction ஏவல் வினா Aeval Vina

The Usual Question Words

These are the usual Tamil question words and their translations into English.

EnglishTamil PronunciationSound
What? என்ன Eṉṉa
Who? யார் Yār
Where? எங்கேEṅkē
Why? ஏன் Ēṉ
When? எப்பொழுது Eppoḻutu
How? எப்படி Eppaṭi

Example Sentences Using Question Words

Here are some sentences using the different types of question words:

EnglishTamilPronunciationSound
What is your name?உங்கள் பெயர் என்ன? Uṅkaḷ peyar eṉṉa?
How old are you? உங்கள் வயது என்ன? Uṅkaḷ vayatu eṉṉa?
Where is this location?இந்த இடம் எங்கே?Inta iṭam eṅkē?
Can you tell me what this means? இதன் பொருள் என்னவென்று சொல்ல முடியுமா?Itaṉ poruḷ eṉṉaveṉṟu colla muṭiyumā?
What time shall we meet? எத்தனை மணிக்கு சந்திக்கலாம்? Ettaṉai maṇikku cantikkalām?
Where is the best place to eat? சாப்பிட சிறந்த இடம் எங்கே? Cāppiṭa ciṟanta iṭam eṅkē?
Do you know how much this costs? இதற்கு எவ்வளவு செலவாகும் தெரியுமா?Itaṟku evvaḷavu celavākum teriyumā?
When does the movie start? படம் எப்போது தொடங்கும்? Paṭam eppōtu toṭaṅkum?
Sir, could you repeat that please? ஐயா, தயவுசெய்து அதை மீண்டும் செய்ய முடியுமா?Aiyā, tayavuceytu atai mīṇṭum ceyya muṭiyumā?
Excuse me Ma’am, is this yours? மன்னிக்கவும் மேடம், இது உங்களுடையதா?Maṉṉikkavum mēṭam, itu uṅkaḷuṭaiyatā?
Is it time to go? செல்ல நேரமா? Cella nēramā?
Uncle, why don’t you come in? மாமா, ஏன் உள்ளே வரக்கூடாது? Māmā, ēṉ uḷḷē varakkūṭātu?
Mom, can I take the bags? அம்மா, நான் பைகளை எடுக்கலாமா? Am’mā, nāṉ paikaḷai eṭukkalāmā?
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Types Of Questions

Types Of Answer Sentences

For the different types of Tamil question words, there are also a variety of answers. We have tried to generalize them in the categories below:

EnglishTamilPronunciationSound
Related to “which” question words சுட்டு விடைSuttu Vidai
Negative answers மறை விடை/எதிர் மறுத்துக் கூறல் விடை Marai Vidai
Positive answers நேர்விடை/ உடன்பட்டுக் கூறுதல் Naer Vidai
Answer referring back to the questioner ஏவல் விடை Yeval Vidai
Answering with a question வினா எதிர் வினாதல் விடை Vina Ethir Vinaadhal Vidai
Answer with prediction of outcomes உறுவது கூறல் விடை Uruvathu Kooral Vidai
Answer with an excuse உற்றது உரைத்தல் விடை Utrathu Uraithal Vidai
Answer with action இனமொழி விடை Ina Mozhi Vidai

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Tamil questions and answers are quite interesting as they can help us understand a conversation and become more conscious about grammar and sentence structures. In my opinion, having knowledge of this topic will also improve the overall quality of your interactions with native speakers. After all, good questions bring great answers, right?

Want to improve your skill in the language further? Now is the best time for you to consider Ling! Ling is a language-learning resource that is perfect for anyone who wants to master languages in a fun and engaging manner. Inside, you’ll find several lessons in 60+ languages, and you can take all of these at the same time! The app has everything from grammar-based discussions to cultural points and vocabulary!

So what are you waiting for? Don’t let your learning end here! Discover more about the Tamil language by downloading Ling today on the App Store and Play Store!

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