Bonjou! Learn to Speak Haitian Creole

Bonjou! ...Mèsi! ...E Orevwa! Check out the Audio Lesson of the Week. Do as many exercises as you need. Take an online QUIZ and get your answers right away. Finish a crossword puzzle. Reinforce your learning with the Audio/Video exercises. Search for English or Haitian Creole words translation. Also search the whole site for expressions, idioms and grammar rules. And ask questions about the language in the ASK ME ANYTHING section.
Most requested translations added here for your convenience: I love you → Mwen renmen w. I miss you → Mwen sonje w. My love!Lanmou mwen!

Thursday, February 28, 2013

I am wondering about the word RENK in haitian Creole. What is the part of speech? How do I use it (better :)? Can you give me a couple of sentences with RENK (in Creole). Thanks!

Renk, in Haitian Creole, can function as an adverb or an adjective.
Renk → only, just, all, the smallest/slightest

As you can see in #1, use it to modify a verb as in:
M renk gade w ... → I only looked at you...
Nou renk salye l ... → We only greet him....

1. Li pa't malad ditou.  Li renk di m li te gen yon ti tètfèmal, enpi l'al kouche li pa janm reveye.
    He wasn't sick at all.  He only told me that he had a little headache, he went to lie down and he never woke up.

As you can see in sentence #2, use it at the beginning of a sentence as in:
Renk sa'm ta ka di .... → All I could say
Renk sa'm te wè ... → All I saw ....
Renk parèt sèlman ... → Just show up ...

2. Mwen pa konnen sa ou vle m fè.  Renk sa m ka fè pou ou se lapriyè.
   I don't know what you want me to do.  All I could do for you is pray.

3. Fanm sa pa gen anyen serye l'ap regle.  Renk sa l'ap fè sèlman se veye zafè moun pou l'al fè tripotay.
    This woman is doing nothing important.  The only thing she does is spying on people so she can gossip.

As you can see in #4, #5, and #6 use it to modify a noun (in Creole) as in:
Renk di dola mwen genyen → I only have ten bucks.
Renk otograf ou m bezwen → I just need your autograph.

4. Nan pwen w rive la, renk Bondye sèl ki ka sove w.
     At this point, only God can help you.

5. Ki tenten w'ap fè la?  Apa w'ap fè bagay Bouki!  Ou ale lekòl pou sizan, renk yon lane sèlman w rete pou fini, enpi ou vle lage sa?
    What the hell are you doing?  Why are you acting foolishly?!  You go to school for six years, you only have one more year to go and you want to quit?

6.  Sitiyasyon an malouk.  Mari fache.  Madanm move.  Pitit fwase.  Renk youn nan yo di yon mo sèlman, sa va kont pou mennen gwo deblozay.
      The situation is tense.  The husband is upset.  The wife is angry.  The children are hurt.  Just one word from one of them is enough to cause a big racket.

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

Madanm Mandaly, I have run across "fi a" and "fi an". I realize that they are both correct, but are they always interchangeable at random or at will? Then again, which is more preferable? Kreyol definitely has a flavor of its own. Mesi anpil.

I use both.
I don't think it's about preference.

The majority of times people use definite article "an"/"lan" instead of "a"/"la" because that's how they talk in the region they are from.  
We say "Fèmen pòt la" and they say "Fèmen pòt lan" (Close the door).  
We say "Vitès la te ilegal" and they say "Vitès lan te ilegal" (The speed was illegal)
We say "Tibebe a grangou" and they say "Tibebe an grangou" (The baby's hungry)



And, other times a definite article "a" or "la" might be switched to "an" or "lan" depending on nasal sounds preceding or "surrounding" it.

For example:
instead of:
Netwaye kay la ban mwen
I could also say
Netwaye kay lan ban mwen. (influenced by the nasal sounds in ....ban mwen)
even though the rule says that we should say "kay la"

other examples:
You'll say "zanmi an" instead "zanmi a", because of the nasal sound "zan..." in zanmi
You'll say "fanmi an" instead of "fanmi a" because of the nasal sound "fan..." in fanmi.

We say:
jou a or jou an
avangou a or avangou an
bouk la or bouk lan
soukous la or soukous lan
lanmou an because of the nasal sound "lan..." in lanmou

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


Madanm Mandaly, What is the words in HC for "Louisiana" and then for "Louisianan". I am thinking it is different from LC. Pa vre?

Wi, li diferan.
Louisiana in Haitian Creole is Lwizyàn (pronounced Lwi-zjà-n)
A man from Louisiana will be called Lwizyanè in H. Creole.
A woman from Louisiana will be called Lwizyanèz.

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

Hey girl nou pa pale kèk tan.... M ap sonje w :) i need to confirm how to say "I won't be home at that time." or "I'll be away" mèsi!

Mezanmi!  Etranje sou mwen :)
M'espere tout bagay anfòm kote ou ye a.

I will not be home at that time.
Mwen p'ap la lè sa a.
Mwen p'ap la lò sa a.
Mwen p'ap lakay lè sa.
Mwen p'ap lakay mwen lè sa a.

I'll be away.
M'ap deyò.
Mwen p'ap isi.
Mwen p'ap la.
M'ap an vwayaj.

Kenbe la :)

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

Coming from .... Going to ... (in Haitian Creole)


How does one translate these sentences? "Kevin takes a flight coming from Cleveland." and "LeBron takes a flight going to Miami." How is 'going to' and 'coming from' translated as prepositional expressions and in this context?



coming from or from → soti, soti nan, soti depi, sot depi
Coming from (be born at, originate from, belonging to, produced from)

going to → ale, ale nan, ale nan direksyon, rive, rive jouk



1. Mwen soti nan gran fanmi.
    I come from a large family.

2. Bannann sa yo soti Costa Rica.
    These plantains were grown in Costa Rica.
    These plantains come from Costa Rica.

3. Mwen soti Ayiti, men vrè orijin mwen se Lafrik Ginen.
    I come from Haiti, but my true origin is Guinea Africa

4. Soti nan ri DESSALINES ale nan ri TOUSSAINT, sa fè dizuit kilomèt.  Eske w ka mache distans sa a?
    From Dessalines Street to Toussaint Street, that's 18 kilometers.  Can you walk that far?

5.  Mwen te wè nan nouvèl maten an, yon ti gason 9 ane te kondi machin papa li soti depi New Jersey ale Connecticut.  Annarivan Connecticut lapolis te met lapat sou ni ti gason an ni papa l.
     I saw on the news this morning a 9 year old boy drove his father's car from New Jersey to Connecticut.  As they arrived in Connecticut, the police apprehended both the boy and his father.

6.  Mwen kapap resite bib la pakè soti depi Jenèz rive nan liv Apokalips.
     I could recite the bible by heart from Genesis to the book of Revelation.

7.  Ou te mèt kriye depi maten rive jouk aswè, m p'ap okipe w.
     You may cry from morning till night, I 'll ignore you.

8.   Lebron pran yon vòl k'ap soti Cleveland.
      Lebron takes a flight coming from Cleveland.
 
9.  Kevin pran yon vòl k'ap fè wout Miami.
     Kevin pran yon vòl ki prale nan direksyon Miami.
     Kevin takes a flight going to Miami. (a flight that's going to Miami?)

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

What are the some Creole words for 'dizzy' other than TOUDI? "I feel very dizzy after all that spinning around."

dizzy (woozy) → toudi, gen vètij, gen tèt vire, soule, dekonstonbre

1. Mwen ta konseye pa kondi machin premye fwa w pran remèd sa a.  Li ka byen soule w.
    I would advise you not to drive the first time you take this medicine.  It might make you woozy.

2. "I feel very dizzy after all that spinning around."
     "Tout vire tounen sa a toudi m anpil."

3. This makes me dizzy.
    Sa BAN M tèt vire.

4.  Does this make you dizzy?
     Eske sa BA W tèt vire?

5.  Zafè maryaj montay ris sa a ban m vètij.
     This roller coaster marriage makes me dizzy.

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

How is 'volunteer' translated? "I volunteered in a nursing home a couple of years ago."

to volunteer 
fè volontè
bay tan "w" gratis
pwopoze tèt "ou" (to volunteer oneself for a task)

egz:
1. Lè m te gen sèz lane sou tèt mwen, mwen te konn fè volontè nan yon lopital.  Yo te rele m Candy Striper.
   When I was sixteen I used to volunteer at a hospital.  They called me a Candy Striper.

2. Lè misye tande twoup la t'ap tounen Ayiti, li te pwopoze tèt li pou misyion an, paske li pale bon Kreyòl.
   When he heard that the troupe was going back to Haiti he volunteered for the mission, because he speaks Creole well.
Haitian Creole ↔ English Reference, Look up Haitian Creole and English Words

'to be seasick, airsick, carsick,and homesick'? As verbs and/or nouns?

seasickness → maldemè n., gen maldemè v.
airsick → malavyon
carsick → malmachin n., gen malmachin v.
motion sickness → mal transpò
to be homesick → gen nostalji, sonje lakay

egz:
1. Premye fwa mwen rive nan peyi etranje, sonje lakay fè m pa ka manje.

2. M panse se laperèz ki lakòz moun gen malavyon.

3. Chak kou Jozefin vwayaje sot Okap al Pòtoprens, malmachin fèl rann tout sa k nan lestomak li.

4.  Zafè pran ti chaloup pou al Lagonav la, m p'ap fè sa menm!  Mwen gen maldemè.

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

What is the Haitian Creole equivalent to the English "Bless you!" or "Gersundheit!" in response to someone after they sneeze?

We say:
Bondye beni w.
Dye benis
Sometimes the person who sneezes say "Mèsi Senyè!".  Where I come from people think that sneezing is tied to longevity (longevity, at least, for the day they sneeze :)

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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

'even' and 'odd' in Creole? "One, three, five, seven, nine, and eleven are odd numbers." and "Two, four, six, eight, ten, and twelve are even numbers."

even numbers → chif pè
odd numbers → chif enpè

1.

en, twa, senk, sèt, ak nèf se chif enpè.
One three, five, seven, and nine are odd numbers.

2.
Sou ranje goch la w'ap jwenn kay ak chif enpè yo, e sou bò dwat la w'ap jwenn kay ki gen chif pè yo.
On the left side you'll find the houses with odd numbers, and on the right side you'll find the houses with even numbers.

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

Can I ask you to translate what you said at the end "kenbe la jouk sa kaba"?

I think "..jouk sa kaba" threw you off a bit :)

Jouk sa kaba → till the end, until the end.


1.
Kenbe la jouk sa kaba.
Hang in there until the end.

2.
N'ap lite pou jou sa kaba.
We'll fight until the end.

3.
Manman w te mennen yon vi kourajez.  Li te lite ak kansè a jouk sa kaba.
Your mom led a courageous life.  She fought the cancer until the end. 

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

How would you say 'To have the nerves'? such as in: "The pastor has the nerves to criticize a church member after his own scandalous secrets was exposed. What a hypocrite!"

Have the nerves (it's about being courageous and ballsy, non?)
gen odas (have the audacity)
gen kouray (have the courage)
sanwont  (to be shameless)
pa gen nen nan figi (to have no shame)
gen kran (have the courage)
gen kè (to have the heart)
gen grenn nan bouda (ballsy)

1.  He had the nerve to say that?!
     Li te gen kouray di sa?!
     Li gen kè di sa?!
     Li gen odas di sa?!
     Li pa wont di sa?!

2.  After what happened, I can't believe they have the nerve to show up here.
     Apre sa k te pase a, m p ka kwè yo gen odas parèt la a.

3. If I had the nerve, I would go to his face and tell him what I think.
    Si m te gen odas, m ta va al nan figi l pou m di l sa m panse.

4.  I dare you to do that!  You don't have the nerve for this.
     M defann ou al fè sa!  Ou pa gen kè ou sa.

5.  You've got some nerves showing your face around here.
     Ala w gen grenn nan bouda w, pou w vin parèt figi w la a.

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

Is your pain getting better, worse, or staying the same? Thanks!

Is the pain getting better, worse, or is it staying the same?
Eske doulè a miyò, pi mal, oubyen eske li toujou menm nan?


Is your pain getting better, worse, or staying the same?
Eske doulè ou miyò, pi mal, oubyen menm nan?


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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

franse sirèt?

franse sirèt or franse mawon → bad french

egz:
1. Tan pou ap pale franse sirèt la, poukisa w pa jis pale Kreyòl?
     Instead of speaking bad French, why don't you just speak Creole?

2. Yon move Creole pi bon mil fwa pase franse mawon.
     Bad Creole is a thousand times better than bad french.

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

What are translations for 'To be fed up', 'to have enough of it','to have it up to here'? "After two days, I am fed up with this nonsense." or "I have had it up to here with your nonsense!" or "I've had enough of this! I'm leaving!"

BASICALLY, you can translate that in Creole as: bouke, lase, gen ase, gen kont, gen degou, etc....

Examples:
1.
I'm fed up with life.
M gen degou ak lavi a.
or you could aslo say
Lavi a ban m degou.

2.
I've had enough.
Mwen gen ase.

3.
I've had enough.  I can't take this anymore.
Mwen gen kont mwen. M pa kapab sipòte ankò.

4.
"I have had it up to here with your nonsense!"
"Mwen bouke ak tenten ou you!"

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

"Benyen ak san" does this mean "bathe with blood"

Oh my!  It could very well be.
But, in case it's not, let me give you another use for the word benyen, other than to shower:

benyen (v.)→ to be immersed in, to be covered in, to be saturated with
examples:

1. Mesye te antre nan estasyon lapolis la benyen ak san.
    He came into the police station covered in blood.

2. Jou desas sa a, anpil moun te rantre lakay yo benyen ak sann.
    On the day of that disaster many people went home covered in soot.

3. Tout kò fanm nan te benyen ak maling k'ap fè pi.  Menm doktè yo te pè touche l.
    The woman's body was covered in oozing sores.  Even the doctors were afraid of touching her.

4. Lè w ap fè wout provens Ayiti, distans pou rive nan destinasyon w, tou cheve w, tout plim je w, tout figi w va benyen ak pousyè.
    When you traveling the countryside road of Haiti, by the time you get to your destination, your hair, your eyelashes and your face will be covered in dust.

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

manti kou chen?

same as in English, to lie like a dog
egz:
Lè mesye kandida yo ap pale politik, yo manti kou chen.

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

Kisa REDEVANS ye? I don't think I've encounter this word before.

redevans → debt of gratitude, duty

egz:
1. Eske peyi Ayiti genyen Olandè yon redevans?
    Does Haiti owe the Dutch a debt of gratitude? 

2. Etidyan ki diplome nan lekòl medsin Ayiti dwe peyi a yon redevans.
    Students who graduate from the school of medicine in Haiti owe the country a debt of gratitude.

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Monday, February 25, 2013

Right and wrong? "The answer is right." "This is the wrong street." "My dad is always right." "He has the wrong exam sheet." what are the many ways to express 'right' and 'wrong' for people and things?

right (correct)  → kòrèk, bon, jis, gen rezon
right (morally good) → dwat, jistifye
wrong (not correct) → move, fo
wrong (immoral) → mal, mechan, enjis, pa bon

1. My dad is always right. (right - correct in opinion)
    Papa m toujou gen rezon.

2. The answer is right. (right - correct)
     Repons lan kòrèk.

3. This is not right (right - fair, just)
    Sa pa jis.

4. You've dialed a wrong number. 
    Ou konpoze move nimewo.

5.  The pharmacy gave me the wrong medication.
     Fanmasi a ban m yon move medikaman.

6.  What you did was wrong.
      Sa ou fè a te pa't bon.
      Sa ou fè a pa't bon.


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

Mwen gen yon zami ki vle konnen plis de Sainta Therese de Lisieux. Li pa pale anglais ou francais byen. Pou sa reason, mwen vle bay li information nan nan Kreole. Eske ou konnen ki kote mwen kapab ale pou trouve information de St. Therese nan Kreole?

I have actually made a couple of calls on this one.  This will be hard to find.  If it exists in a published version in Creole, you'll probably find in a Haitian bookstore in the 'religion' section.
Have you thought of copying and pasting the info you have in English into Google translate?

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

Is there a Haitian Creole equivalent to the idiom "Seeing is believing"?

Seeing is believing
Tande ak wè se de (expression, literally: hearing and seeing are two different things)
Fò w wè pou w kwè (expression)

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

What is a Hatian word for "one who gives" or "good Samaritan?"

benefactor → byenfetè, donor
good samaritan → bon samariten

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

Chante m yon chan dodo :)

Chan dodo se pou tibebe nan bèso.

Chan dodo Ayisyen ki popilè se:
Dodo ti titit manman
Si ou pa dodo, krab la va manje w (twa fwa)
Dodo titit, krab nan kalalou

Manman ou ale larivyè
Papa ou al peche pwason
Si ou pa dodo, krab la va manje w (2 fwa)
Dodo titit krab nan kalalou

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

How does one translate 'good mood' and 'bad mood'? "Ben Afleck is in a very good mood because he won an Oscar award for his film Argo." and "Chris is in a very bad mood because he flunked his exam."

M kontan pou Affleck.  Mwen te apresye fim li an.  Malgre m te konnen finisman fim Argo a, mwen te sou sispens lè m t'ap gade l.


In good mood see link

in bad mood
chimerik
malouk
pa sou san l
move
gen figi mare

She's in a bad mood today.
Li chimerik jodi a.
Li pa sou san l.
Figi l mare jodi a.
Li move jodi a.

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

Manday, mèsi ampil pou ed ou avek mwen semenn ki te pase. Tout sa ou ap fe enpotan anpil.

M'imajinen tout bagay anfòm kounye a :)
Remèsiman se va flè sou tonm mwen.

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Sunday, February 24, 2013

can you tell me if "Fe Fet" and "Fek Fet" are different expressions, could the first one have a typo where someone forgot to add the "k"?

fè fèt → to celebrate, to have a party, to rejoice

1.  Ann fè fèt!
     Let's celebrate!
     Let's rejoice!

2.  Limane te fè fèt lè pitit gason li te tounen lakay sennesof.
     Limane celebrated when her son came back home safe and sound.

fèk fèt → just happened, just occurred, just born

3. Yo te mennen yon ti bebe ki te fèk fèt nan sal dijans lan.  Li pa't kapab respire byen, men doktè yo te fè l miyò.
     They brought a newborn baby to the emergency room.  He had difficulty breathing, but the doctor made him better.

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

It's TIME to go to work. (AUDIO)

Download link: Click here to download…

To listen to this audio click on the PLAY button and follow along :)

 

Hey... Madanm, di mwen, eske ou pa’t gen pou  al travay maten an?
Lady, tell me,  didn't you plan to go to work this morning?

Mwen prale wi.  Men Li poko pou m kite. (please see link)
Yes I AM going.  But it's not time to leave yet.

A ki lè w’ap kite?
At what time will you leave?

M’ap soti la a setè edmi paske travay mwen kòmanse a uitè.
I'll get out of here at 7:30 because my job starts a 8:00.

Ah mwen konprann.  E se a ki lè w’ap tounen?
Ah! I understand.  And at what time will you be back?

M’ap fin travay a midi.
I'll be done working at noon.

Kifèla, ou pa travay anpil!  Ou travay katrèdtan sèlman?
So, you don't work much!  You work only for four hours?

Wi se sa.  Mwen travay KAT-È-D'-TAN sèlman.
Yes that's right.  I only work four- hours-of-time.

E se kisa ou fè avèk rès tan w?
And what do you do with the rest of your time?

Ak rès tan mwen, mwen fè klas pou moun ki pa konn li ……lasemèn nan apremidi.
With the rest of my time, I teach a class for people who don't know how to read ...on weekday afternoons.

E ki sa w fè lewikenn.
What do you on weekends?

Lewikenn, mwen dòmi nèt ale.  Mwen dòmi tout lajounen, tout lannuit.
On weekends, I sleep like a log.  I sleep all day, all night.

San dout, ou merite tout repo sa a.
Without a doubt, you deserve all that rest.

Wi ….M panse m merite l vre.  Enben, m’ale wi.  N’a wè pita lè m rantre a dizè?
Yes,  I think I do deserve it.  So, I'm leaving.  See you later when I come back at 10:00?

Dakò.  N’a wè lè w retounen.
Yes.  See you when you get back.

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

Saturday, February 23, 2013

far away from ..... (in Creole?), How to say especially ...away from.

"... away from" does not have to be translated here
Far away from .... → lwen ...; some people say lwen avèk .... or lwen de .....

1. Pouki ou kanpe lwen m konsa?
    Why do you stay so far away from me?

2.  Poukisa ou sanble lwen konsa jodi a?
     Why do you seem so distant today?

3.  Mwen lwen lakay.
     I'm far away from home.

4. Ki kote Nouyòk ye?  Eske li lwen isit la?
    Where is New York?  Is it far from here?

5.  Lapolis te fè manifestan yo kanpe lwen baryè palè prezidansyèl la.
     The police had the protesters stand far away from the gate of the presidential palace.

6.  Chak kou mwen lwen w konsa, m santi m pa viv.
     Whenever I'm so far away from you I have a hard time.

7.  Tibebe pa ka sipòte rete lwen manman yo.
     Babies can't tolerate staying far from their mom.

8.  Fout mete w deyò!  Pati!  Ale lwen isit la!  Mwen pa vle wè menm lonbraj ou devan kay sa.
     Get the hell out!  Leave!  Go far away from here!  I don't even want to see your shadow passing by this house.

9.  M'atriste. M lwen lakay,  lwen fanmi m,  lwen menaj mwen,  lwen tout sa m renmen e ki renmen m.
    I'm sad.  I am far away from home, from my family, from my lover, far away from those I love and who loves me.

10.  Yon sèl bagay m'ap di w.  Rete lwen bonòm sa a tande!
       I'll telll you just one thing.  Stay away from this young guy, you hear!

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

What does anpwent mean here: "Evidamman, se pa yon sijè nou ka nye lè nou vin wè efè anpwent li sou agrikilti an Ayiti pase fòk peyi a te kòmanse debwaze pou chèche lajan pou kòmanse peye Lafrans." Védrine-'Agrikilti ta dwe premye sib nan devlopmanAyiti'

anpwent (fingerprint); I think Emmanuel Védrine is being nonconcrete here.  Anpwent, here, might mean  mark, influence, impression, or signature.

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

m'ale (in English)

M'ale.
I'm leaving.
I'm going.
I'm out of here.
So long
Goodbye

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

Number of hours

èdtan (from French heures de temps)

1. inèdtan 
    inè-d-tan
    one hour

2. dezèdtan
    dezè-d-tan
    two hours

3.  Mwen te travay pou douzèdtan ayè.
     I worked for twelve hours yesterday.

4.  Nou te jene pou vennkatrèdtan (vennkatèdtan).
     We fasted for twenty-four hours.

5. Dabitid yon fim dire inèdtan edmi.
    Usually a movie lasts one and a half hours.

6.  Nenpòt moun ki fè yon diskou ki dire plis pase demi èdtan pa gen konpasyon pou oditè l yo.
     Anyone that makes a speech longer than half an hour has no compassion for his audience.

7.  Mwen fatige paske m te dòmi yon kadè sèlman yèswa.
     I'm tired because I only slept for a quarter of an hour last night.

8.  Konbyen èdtan ou travay pa semèn?  Mwen travay karantèdtan pa semèn.
     How many hours you work per week?  I work forty hours per week.

9.  Pran medikaman an chak twazèdtan.
     Take the medicine every three hours.

10.  M te gen tranche pou trannsizèdtan anvan m akouche.
     I was in labor for thirty-six hours before giving birth.

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

Friday, February 22, 2013

Ak tout boulin? (fast?)

Wi se sa.

Ak tout boulin
An boulin
Ak tout vitès
With full speed
At great speed

1.  Kamyon pasaje Ayiti sa yo, menm si yo chaje moun, yo pran mòn yo ak tout boulin.
     These passenger trucks in Haiti, even if they're full, take the hills at full speed.

2.  Lè prezidan an ap pase sou lari a, machin li pase ak tout boulin.  Ou pa menm gen tan pou w wè ki moun ki nan machin nan.
    When the president is traveling, his car drives by at great speed.  You don't even have the time to see who's in the car.

3.   Vòlè a te rale bous mwen nan men'm enpi li pran kouri.  Mwen pete yon boulin dèyè l jouk mwen ratrape l.
      The robber snatched my purse from me and took off running.   I took off after him with full speed until I caught him.

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

I say 'kitchin' for kitchen and 'badoum or batoum' for bathroom. Are these words used by other Haitians alongside 'kwizin' and 'twalèt' respectively and are they part of the creole vocabulary?

That sounds like bad English to me.
What do you think?
Would a Haitian who's never travelled to the US, and who only had a primary education in an elementary school in the outskirts of ..... Trou du Nord (for example), understand this type of language clearly?

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

Do you know what the English equivalent to "sa w pa konnen pi gran pase ou"? Is it "Ignorance is bliss"?

No... It's not equivalent to "Ignorance is bliss".

Tout sa w pa konnen pi gran pase w.
All that you don't know is greater than you. literally

I'm not sure what the English equivalent is.  This proverb means that things that are beyond our knowledge and understanding are greater than us.  We can't control the things we don't know.  And sometimes when fate puts them in our way, they can change our lives in ways that we did not plan.  They are greater than us. "Yo pi gran pase nou."

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

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Men longè! Men lajè! Men gwosè! --- MEN means VERY or EXCESSIVELY in this case.

Men, here, translates very,  excessively, to a high degree, or to such a degree in English

1.
Fi a t'ap fè chèlbè nan lari a, men lajè dada l!  Ni gason ni fanm te oblije kanpe pou gade l.
The woman was strutting her stuff in the streets, her butt was that wide!  Men and women taken by curiosity, stopped to stare at her.

2. 
Marlèn akouche yon ti bebe kenz liv.  Si w ta wè sa!  Men gwosè machwè li!
Marlene gave birth to a 15-pound baby.  You should have seen this!  His cheeks were that big!

3.
Te gen plenn lin jou swa sa.  Lalin nan te men gwosè!  Tout lougawou, tout move je, tout zonbi te deyò.  
There was a full moon that night.  The moon was this big!  All werewolves, evil eyes, and zombies were out.

4. 
Fanm nan te ansent uit mwa.  Malgre sa li tonbe goumen ak mèt magazen an.  Men gwosè vant li.  Ou ta kouche atè pou w ri si w te wè sa.
The woman was eight months pregnant.  In spite of that she started to fight with the store owner.  Her belly was so big.  You would have rolled on the floor laughing if you had you seen it.

5.  
Lè m te tande nouvèl la, m te santi tèt mwen te men gwosè.
When I heard the news I felt my head was so big.

6. 
Je blan an te vèt.  Men longè bwa nen l. Tout moun nan vilaj t'ap gade l paske yo patko janm wè yon moun blan.
The white man's eyes were green.  The bridge of his nose was that long.  Everyone in the village was staring at him because they had never seen a white person yet.

7.
Nèg la antre nan ofis la toutouni nèt.  Men longè grenn li. Li pa te wont menm.  Tout moun te panse l te fou.
The man came into the office butt naked.  His penis hanging all the way to the floor.  He had  no shame at all.  Everyone thought he was crazy.

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

IS there a haitian Creole expression to translate 'jumping through hoops'?

Jumping through hoops
Fè anpil zefò. (zefò, jefò, or efò)
Pase nan pil.
Naje bèl nas.

egz:
I jumped through hoops to get the store to reimburse me my money.
Mwen te pase nan pil pou m fè magazen an remèt mwen lajan m.
Mwen te naje bèl nas pou m fè magazen an remèt mwen lajan m.
Mwen te fè anpil efò pou magazen an remèt mwen lajan m.

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

How do I say GET LOST! in Creole?

Get lost! (Scram!, Beat it!)
Soti la!
Retire kò w la!
Rale kò w la!
Degèpi!
Rache manyòk ou!
Òltegèt!

egz:
Retire kò w la! Pa janm parèt figi w isit la ankò!
Get lost! Don't ever show you face around here again!

Also,

To take off (to split, to run)
Degèpi
Rache manyòk
Kraze rak
Chape poul
sove

egz:
Lè touris yo te tande gen yon siklòn k'ap vini, yo te rache manyòk yo bay teren an blanch.
When the tourists heard that there was a hurricane on the way, they took off and cleared the area.

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

How exactly is the word 'alsiyis' used?

Alsiyis (to moan in pleasure, or moans of pleasure) can be used as verb or a noun.
egz:
Msye fè m alsiyis nèt. 
Se pa ti Alsiyis fanm nan bay non!
 
Haitian Creole ↔ English Reference, Look up Haitian Creole and English Words

Many ways to say "therefore (...and so)" in Haitian Creole

Therefore (...and so)
pakonsekan
kifèla
kidonk
kifèdonk
donk
konsa la
konsa menm
konsa tou
alò
alò menm
annefè

So, you mean to tell me that yon don't want to go any more?
Pakonsekan, ou vle di m ke ou pa vle ale ankò?
Kidonk, ou vle di m ke ou pa vle ale ankò?
Konsa menm, ou vle di m ke ou pa vle ale ankò?
Annefè, ou vle di m ke ou pa vle ale ankò?

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

I have just read your recent response to the post about 'an sotan''an patan'. I figured that the gerund express 'while' or 'during' even 'upon', 'though', 'when' but I wasn't sure so I didn't ask the question until now. I'm still not that sure about it. I have provided MANY examples in English and creole. A good amount of these examples are experiments. There are also alternative examples that express the same meaning. You could say I got carried away. I don't think all of my creole sentences are correct. FEEL FREE to make comments and corrections on anything you find fault with, FEEL FREE to let me know if my questions don't make sense to you. Can the gerund in creole have others meanings provided below? Can the gerund be alternatives?

Mezanmi o!  You DID get carried away :)
Kòm m te di w, sanble ou gen anpil enfliyans Franse lakay ou.  Sa parèt nan sa w ap ekri.


1.
He came into the room smiling.
Li te vin nan chanm nan souran.
Li te vin nan chanm nan tout an souriyan.
Se nan souri li te vini nan chanm nan.
Se ak yon souri li te vini nan chanm nan.

2.
She lost weight by working out.
Li te pèdi pwa nan fèzan(fèran) egzèsis.
Se nan fè egzèsis li te pèdi pwa. (I like!)

3.
He fell asleep while listening to the radio.
Li te tonbe dòmi pandan l'ap ekoute radyo a. (I like!)
Li te tonbe dòmi an ekoutan radyo a.

4.
He injured himself while playing basketball.
Li blese kò l pandan(antan) l'ap jwe baskèt. (I like!)
Li blese kò l an jouwan(jweyan) baskèt.
Or you could also say:
Li te blese pandan l'ap jwe baskèt.

5.
He slammed the door as he left.
Li klake pòt la lè li te pati. (I like!)
Li klake pòt la kan li te pati. (I like!)
Le te pati en klakan pòt la.

6.
As he was leaving, he looked worried.
Kan li te pati, li te sanble ankyè.(enkyè?)
Lè li te pati, li te sanble ankyè.
An patan, li te sanble ankyè.

7.
When I arrive in London, I shall go straight to my friends' house.
Lè mwen rive nan Lond, mwen prale touswit nan kay zanmi mwen yo.
Kan mwen rive nan Lond, mwen prale touswit nan kay zanmi mwen yo.
An rivan nan Lond, mwen prale touswit nan kay zanmi mwen yo.
How about:
Lè m rive Lond mwen prale tou dwat lakay zanmi mwen yo..?

8.
When taking her coat, she caught her foot in the rug.
Lè pran manto li, li te pran pye li nan tapi a.
Kan pran manto li, li te pran pye li nan tapi a.
An pranan(prenan) manto li, li te pran pye li nan tapi a.
How about
Pandan l ap pran manto li pye l te pran nan tapi a...?

9.
As/while she was trying to catch up with Fabienne, Nadine tripped and fell.
Kòm li te eseye ratrape Fabienne, Nadine trebiche e tonbe.
Pandan li te eseye ratrape Fabienne, Nadine trebiche e tonbe.
An eseyan ratrape Fabienne, Nadine trebiche e tonbe.
Pandan l t'ap eseye .....?

10.
On(upon) arriving, I had to change clothes because I was soaking wet.
Lè mwen rive, mwen te gen pou chanje rad mwen paske mwen te tranpe. (I like!)
Kan mwen rive, mwen te gen pou chanje rad mwen paske mwen te tranpe. (I like!)
An rivan(arivan) mwen rive, mwen te gen pou chanje rad mwen paske mwen te tranpe.
I think you mean:
Rive m rive, mwen t oblije chanje rad mwen paske m te tranpe.

11.
Upon seeing the flowers, she cried.
Lè li te wè flè yo, li kriye. (I like!)
Kan li te wè flè yo, li kriye. (I like!)
An vwayan(wèyan) flè yo, li kriye.  (wèyan..?)

12.
Upon entering the building, I saw Paul.
Lè(kan) mwen te antre nan bilding nan, mwen wè Paul.
Se nan antre nan bilding nan, mwen wè Paul.
An antran nan bilding nan, mwen wè Paul.
How about:
Kou m antre nan bilding nan m wè Paul...?


13.
I understood the political situation by/in/upon reading the newspapers.
Mwen konprann sitiyasyon politik la lè(kan) mwen li jounal yo.
Se nan li jounal yo ke mwen konprann sitiyasyon politik yo. (I like ! :)
Mwen konprann sitiyasyon politik an lizan(liyan) mwen li jounal yo.

14. 
TOUT (Emphasis)
All the while she was talking to me she was doing the ironing.
Tout pandan li te pale avèk mwen, li te pase fè.
Tout an palan avèk mwen, li te pase fè.
Se tout nan pale avèk mwen, li te pase fè.
How about:
Li t'ap repase tout pandan l'ap pale avè m...?

15.
Opposition
Despite taking the longer route he still arrived first.
Malgreke li pran yon wout pli lòng, li te rive premye toujou.
Se tout nan pran yon wout pli lòng, li te rive premye toujou.
Tout an pranan(prenan) yon wout pli lòng, li te rive premye toujou.
How about:
Malgre l te pran wout ki pi long nan, li te toujou rive an premye....?

16.
Concession
Whilst I understand his arguments, I do not agree with his plan.
Byenke mwen konprann agiman li, mwen pa dakò avèk plan li.
Se tout nan kronprann agiman li mwen pa dakò avèk plan li.
Tout an kronpranan agiman li mwen pa dakò avèk plan li.

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

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

In "I'll be in Haiti at that time." (or I'll be at school, I'll be at the party, I'll be there), when I use "Mwen pral", it seems that I'm saying I'M GOING instead of I'LL BE AT. Which future indicator do I really use? mesi pou ed ou.

m'ap or m'ava (mwen va or m va) will work just fine.

I' ll be at ....  
M'ap ...
M'ava ...

I'll be at the ... 
M'ap nan ...
M'ava nan ...

1. I'll be in Haiti at that time.
    M'ap Ayiti lè sa a.
    M va Ayiti lè sa a.

2. I'll be in New York tomorrow.
    M'ap New York demen.

3. I'll be at school by the time you arrive.
    M'ap lekòl distans pou w rive.

4. I'll be at church in the morning.  Why don't you come see me in the afternoon instead?
    M'ap legliz nan maten.  Pouki ou pa vin wè m nan apremidi pito.

5.  I'll be at home
     M'ap lakay.
     M va lakay.

6.  I'll be at your side.
     M'ap bò kote w.
     M'ava bò kote w.

7. I'll be at the movies.
    M'ap nan sinema a.

8.  I'll be in the crowd watching you sing.
     M'ap nan foul la ap gade w k'ap chante.
    M va nan foul ap gade w k'ap chante.

9. I'll be at the hospital
    M'ap nan lopital la.

10. I'll be at the party
    M'ap nan fèt la.

11. I'll be at the river
    M'ap nan larivyè a

12. I'll be at the bar
      M'ap nan ba a.


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

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

gade yon ..., gade yon tenten. Are there more expressions like these, that is to say, expressions that similar in form and in meaning.

Yes.  I think it's the same as saying "What the hell!", isn't it?
Gade yon tenten!
Gade de betiz!
Gade de salopri!
Gade yon zen!
Gade yon tèt chaje!
etc....

or almost similar expressions:
Look what I've gotten myself into.
Gade yon kwòk m'al mete nan kou m.
Gade nan kisa 'm pran.
Gade nan ki nich gèp ma'l foure pye'm.
etc...

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

Hi Mandaly, I was wondering if you could recommend any specific novels written in Hatian Creole, but not anything at an advanced reading level. Thanks for all the work you've done on your blog, I really have learned a lot. -Julia

Bonswa Julia :)
Mèsi.  I'm glad you're learning a lot.

Have you read Maude Heurtelou's Lafanmi Bonplezi, Sezisman!, or Her Creole adaptation of Jacques Roumain's Gouverneurs de La Rosée, Fòs Lawouze?  Also I found Emile Celestin-Megie's fiction AGASYA (about a young Haitian woman who, while doing research on the vodou religion, gets enthralled into a vodou sect) interesting. In these books, I would say, the Creole is of an intermediate level.

And if you're in Haiti, visit the Presses Nationales d'Haiti so you can browse their Creole novels.  A friend of mine just brought me some books from there (Which were recommended by another friend).  I hear they are very helpful.  If they do not carry a book that you're looking for, they'll will notify you when the book is available.

Also, look into these novels that I just finished reading:  Enpi Oun Jou Konsa Tèt Pastè Bab Pati, and Rete, Kote Lamèsi.  These last two are just so very addictive! So good!   Browse through the first few pages (if you can) to see if the Creole is challenging at all.  They are available at Presses Nationales d'Haiti.   I'm not sure how they fare with mail orders.   You can always contact them via the book store phone number on their website.

Bòn chans!  M espere ou va jwenn yon bon woman (novel).

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

eske mikwob pa touyen aysiyen tout bon vre?

Kibò sa mezanmi!
M si e sèten ou konn repons kesyon sa a pi byen pase m menm.  Kwake m pa konn pouki ou mande l, ni pouki moun ap kontinye di sa toujou.

Kòm pawòl sa a se yon dizon li ye, m ka konprann pouki yo toujou ap repete l.  Annefè, li plis yon ekspresyon pase yon dizon .... onswa pa :)

Anndan kò imen, dapre sa m aprann, se yon bagay esteril li ye.  Depi mikwòb antre kote l pa dwe antre, l'ap bay lafyèv, l'ap fè ravaj, l'a kraze brize jouk li fese kò a atè mò rèd.  Se remèd ak iminite w sèlman ki va sove w.  - Yo fè m konprann tou se pa tout mikwòb ki voye w al bwachat.

M panse se zafè iminite a ki ka byen NANNAN ekspresyon sa a.  (Petèt olye nou di "Mikwòb pa touye Aysiyen", nou ta dwe di: "Ayisyen gen plis iminite kont maladi pase tout pèp, akoz katafal mikwòb k'ap viv lakay yo")
Petèt yo repete ekspresyon an paske lè w'ap gade jan divès kote Ayiti sal anpil, w'ap mande tèt ou kouman yon kò imen tolere viv nan kondisyon parèy:  Moun ak kokorat dòmi sou menm kabann; moun bwose dan yo ak menm bwòs ravèt la fin bwose dan li; moun bwè dlo nan larivyè menm jan ak bèf enpi se lè w gade pi wo larivyè a, ou wè te gen yon kolonn chwal k'ap kaka nan dlo a; kò a vin tounen yon kay pou tout kalite parazit.

Grasadye, "Sa'k pa touye w va angrese w" (What doesn't kill you make you stronger).  Kòm rekonpans ou, lè w kite parazit yo fè ladesant nan kò w, chak parasit prezante w ak yon "diplòm" iminite kòmsi ou te pase "lekòl maladi".
Nan kondisyon sa a Ayisyen chaje ak "diplòm"!  Mwen pa menm ka konte konbyen m genyen meznami o!  Bagay pou ta kriye wi.... men nou genyen parazit yo rekonensans.  Nou fè dibyen avè yo. Nou ba yo kote pou yo layite deng yo, swa nan kò nou, swa nan tout kwen lakay nou, swa nan manje nou, swa nan tout fatra ak pousyè nan lari yo.   Yo menm yo fè pa nou.

Tout sa m sot di la ta ka yon bèl verite wi, men mwen panse ou konnen deja ke kolera rantre an Ayiti enpi li montre nou tout ke ekspresyon "Mikwòb pa touye Ayisyen" an pa gen verite ladan l.  Se yon gwo manti.

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

Monday, February 18, 2013

Saying "Thank You's!" and "You're Welcome"! (AUDIO)

Link to download this audio:
Click here to download…

To Listen to this audio, click on the PLAY button and follow along :)

 

Matmwazèl! (Miss!)
Plètil mesye? (Yes sir?)
Eske ou kapab di m ki lè l ye? (Can you tell me what time it is?)
Li fè sizè. (It's six o'clock.)
Mèsi! (Thank you!)
Deryen mesye! (You're welcome sir!)

Matmwazèl!
Plètil mesye?
Mwen grangou.  Fè yon ti sandwich pou mwen tanpri. (I'm hungry.  Make me a sandwich please)
Men wi mesye! (Of course sir!)
Men sandwich la wi. (Here's the sandwich.)
Mèsil anpil.  Mwen apresye sa! (Thanks a lot.  I appreciate this!)
Ak tout plezi mesye. (With all the pleasure sir!)

Matmwazèl!
Plètil mesye?
Eske w kapab pote yon vè dlo byen glase pou mwen? (Can you bring me a very cold glass of water?)
Wi mesye. (Yes sir)
Men dlo glase a wi! (Here's the cold water)
Mèsi anpil! (Thanks a lot!)
Se te yon plezi mesye! (It was a pleasure sir!)

Matmwazèl!
Plètil mesye?
Chofe yon ti dlo pou m ka benyen tanpri. (Warm up some water for my bath please)
Wi mesye.
Dlo a chofe wi. (The water's been heated)
Mèsi! (Thank you!)
Se te tout plezi m mesye! (It was all my pleasure sir!)

Matmwazèl!
Plètil mesye?
Mwen fin benyen.  Vin fèmen dlo a pou mwen. (I'm done taking my shower.  Come shut off the water for me)
Dakò mesye. (Alright sir.)
Mwen fèmen dlo a wi. (I shut off the water)
Mèsi anpil! (Thanks a lot!)
Padekwa mesye! (You're welcome sir!)

Matmwazèl!
Plètil mesye?
Etenn limyè a pou m ka dòmi. (Turn off the lights so that I may sleep)
Wi mesye.
Mwen etenn limyè a wi. (I turned off the lights)
Mwen remèsye w pou tout sa ou fè pou mwen! (I thank you for all you've done for me!)
Sa pa't anyen mesye! (That was nothing sir!)

Matmwazèl!
Plètil mesye?
Vin kouche bò kote m pou w ka grate do m. (Come lie down next to me so you can scratch my back.)
O!  Non non non Mesye! (Oh no no no sir!)
O O! Poukisa w di non? (Why do you say no?)
Paske sa se yon travay pou madanm ou, pa pou mwen menm! (Because this a job for your wife, not for me!)
Enben, eske w ta vle marye avè m pou w kapab vin madanm mwen? (Well would like to marry me so you can become my wife?)
Non mèsi mesye. Ou pa bezwen yon madanm. Se yon bòn ou bezwen! (No thanks sir.  You don't need a wife.  You need a servant)
Enben, mèsi kanmenm! (Well, thanks anyway!)
Se te yon gran plezi mesye! (It was a great pleasure sir!)

Track: Ede m chante chante sa a by Boukan Ginen

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