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Thursday, January 31, 2013

I see lot so of double words in just one sentence, I understand they're not typos. How can I use them in my own sentences? Especially what do they exactly mean? Ive used "anpil anpil". Can I say "se kontan m kontan"?

YES, you can say "Se kontan m kontan" :)

Those "double words" that you see may be expressing different things.
There are a lot of them.  It's good to understand how to use them before you use them.
The following examples are many, but you probably need to see them in USE, in order to use them yourself.  Right?

Here are some examples:

Verb + subject + verb is used to express as soon as, when, or once something is done
And you can use different verb tenses as seen in example 4

1. Rive nou rive lakay, nou te rele fanmi nou.
    can be translated as:
    When we arrived home, we called our family.
    Once we got home, we called our family.
    Upon arriving home, we called or family

2. Fini li fini manje, l'al kouche.
    As soon as he was done eating, he went to lie down.

3. Soti l soti deyò a, lapolis te arete li.  
    Once he came out, the police apprehended him.  

4.  Dòmi l dòmi, li pa't janm leve ankò. →Once he fell asleep, he never woke up.
     Dòmi l te dòmi, li pa't janm leve. → Once he fell asleep, he never woke up.
     Dòmi l ta pral dòmi li pa t'ap janm leve. → Once he would have fallen asleep, he would not have woken up.

5. Bwè m fin bwè dlo a, m te tonbe malad lamenm.
    Once I was done drinking the water, I immediately fell ill.

Verb + byen + verb expresses emphasis.  It describes how well, how enthusiastically or how meticulously something was done.

6. Li benyen byen benyen pou l te retire labou a sou kò l.
    He took a good shower in order to clean out the mud from his body.

7.  Lè mesye a te pile flè yo, fanm nan te joure l byen joure.
     When the man stepped on the flowers, the woman really cursed at him.

8.  Carol te abiye byen abiye lè li ta prale nan konsè a.
     Carol dressed really nicely when she was going to the concert.

9. Fèt la te anfòm.  M anmize m byen anmize.  E m danse byen danse.
    The party was great.  I really enjoyed myself.  And I danced all I could.

Nan + verb + verb is a dependent clause.  It expresses persistence of one action which may cause something else to happen

10. Nan kouri kouri, li pran yon bèl so.
     He ran so much, that he sustained a bad fall.

11. Nan reflechi reflechi, tèt li pati.
     She thought so much that she lost her mind.

12. Nan chache chache, mwen jwenn $20 ki te pèdi depi dezan.
      In digging and digging, I found $20 that was lost since two years ago.

13. Nan fè bagay fè bagay ak nenpòt moun, li te tonbe ansent.
      In sleeping around so much, she became pregnant.

This next one simply says to keep doing something.

14.  Pa okipe moun k'ap gade w.  Danse danse w tande!
       Don't you worry about people that are looking at you .  Keep dancing you hear!

15. Pale pale w non! Di sa'k ki nan lespri w.  Pa okipe w sa moun va panse.
      Keep talking. Say what's on your mind.  Don't worry about what people will think.

And then, we have double adjectives or adverbs that's simply express how extremely, very much, truly, really real something is or feel.

16.  Mesyedam yo t'ap danse kole kole.
       The couple was dancing very tightly.

17. Fanm nan te parèt kagou kagou.
      The woman seemed very weary.

18.  N'ap koumanse plante bonè bonè.
      We start planting very early.

19.  Nou te rankontre ak yon bèl bèl nègès.
       We met a very beautiful woman.

20. Mwen renmen w anpil anpil.
      I love you very much.

And these last ones ust express an occurrence, an action, a condition, etc... in any tense (past, future, present, etc....)

21. Se danse nou t'ap danse.
      We were dancing.

22.  Se pale n'ap pale sèlman.
       We're only talking.

23. Se kontan m kontan konsa.
      I'm so happy.

24. Linette pa reponn telefòn nan paske se dòmi l'ap dòmi.
      Linette didn't answer the phone because she's sleeping.

25. Se renmen li renmen w konsa kifè li pa kite w deja.
      He loves you so much that's why he hasn't left you already.
      He hasn't left you yet because he loves you so much.

26. Eske se fou w fou kifè w'ap pale pou kont ou? 
      Have you lost your mind, that's why you're talking so much?
      Are you talking on your own, because you've lost your mind?

24. Se benyen m t'apral benyen lè w frape pòt la.
      I was going to take a shower when you knocked at the door.
25. Ou wè m pa al travay, se kapab m pa kapab wi.
      You see that I don't go to work.  It's because I can't.

26. Poukisa ou rejte mwen?  Eske ou pa wè se ede m'ap eseye ede w?
      Why have you rejected me?  Don't you se I'm trying to help you?

27. Se grangou m grangou kifè lestomak ap bouyi.
      I'm hungry, that's why my stomach is growling.

28. Se fache m te fache kifè m te kalote w.
      I was angry, that's why I slapped you.

29. Sispann pale fò konsa.  Moun ap panse se joure n'ap joure.
      Stop talking so loud.  People will think that we're arguing.

30. Se damou mwen damou kifè mwen pa ka manje.
      I'm in love, that's why I cannot eat.
      I cannot eat because I'm in love.

31. Se anraje ou anraje kifè w'ap pale anpil konsa?
      Is it deranged you are deranged that makes you talk so much?
      Are you talking so much because you are deranged?

Haitian Creole ↔ English Reference, Look up Haitian Creole and English Words


  1. This explains a lot. I'm going to have to study this one a bit.

    1. Wi, zanmi m, sa se anpil anpil enfòmasyon :)
      M'espere w'ap kapab itilize kèk nan konvèsasyon.

      Kenbe la, kòm toujou.

  2. For the construction: verb + byen + verb, that is used to express emphasis, can other intensifiers be used in place of "byen" to express emphasis?

    1. Of course you can always say anpil, trè .....
      But there are other ways to express it too, as you can see in the post
      For example:
      Se pati dòmi te dòmi ......