Bonjou! Learn to Speak Haitian Creole

Bonjou! ...Mèsi! ...E Orevwa! Check out our Audio bits. 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 QUESTIONS HERE 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!

Friday, January 31, 2014

Would you translate these sentences for us? We would be so grateful :)

"Would you translate these sentences for us?  We would be so grateful :) 

God made the sun.
God made oranges.
God made our eyes.
God made the moon.
God made me.
  "
"Bondye fè solèy la.
Bondye fè zoranj yo.
Bondye fè zye nou.
Bondye fè lalin nan.
Bondye fè mwen.

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

I know you said vin jwenn mwen means come to me. what are the chances that someone might be saying come find me instead?

Slight chance I guess, if spoken by a non native.  But usually "Vin jwenn mwen" means "Come to me".  And also "Vin chache m" means "Come pick me up" even though it seems to say something else.

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

what is sou moun?

As an expression?  It means cheeky, disrespectful

Al tifi soumoun!
What an impertinent girl!

Ou soumoun konsa,
You are shameless.

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What is kenbe tèt and renka? Ezayi 50:5 ...mwen pa kenbe tèt ak li (Bondye). Mwen pa renka devan li. Thanks for your help! Blessings this Christmastime, Mandaly!


I receive your blessings any time of the year  :)

Kenbe tètto hold one’s own, to persist

Renkato cower, to back away (in fear or because of shyness)

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Used clothes, at least here in the north are called pèpè or maybe pepe. Do you know which?


It’s "pèpè".  They also call them "kenedi" or "rad kenedi"
They are more specifically barely used or second hand clothing (usually from the US) sold in the Haitian flea markets.  

We may say “rad drive” (rad dreevay) – when talking about used clothing we wear at home,  clothes not used for outings.  We also say “Rad ize” (“Rad dezyèm men”) – used clothing

Rad sòti – clothes used for outings, good clothes

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

I think apiye is lean, do they say piye for lean also? When I look it up, piye is supposed to mean plunder. Are there any other meanings or uses for either of these?


Yes “apiye” or “piye” will translate to lean, to tilt

Li te apiye sou miray la. – She leaned against the wall

 

And yes, “piye” also means to plunder, to vandalize

Volè yo piye kay la nèt. – The crooks completely vandalized the house.

 

And when playing hazard games we use “piye”  as a term to determine which player goes first

Ann piyeLet’s see who goes first.

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

Are tout tan and toutotan the same? Please give the translation and examples for the correct usage of toutotan. Thanks!


Tout tanall the time, always, forever
1. Tèt mwen ap fè m mal tout tan. – My head hurts all the time.

2. Nou va viv pou tout tan. – We will live forever.

3. Se tout tan m’ap di l sa. – I tell him that all the time

 

Tout tan and toutotan as long as, as much as, equally as

4. Toutotan w’ap ede l lap rete nan kondisyon sa a. – As long as you’re helping him, he’ll remain in this condition.

5. Tanpri ede m toutotan w kapab . – Please help me as much as you can

6. Toutotan l t’ap pale dlo t’ap kouri nan je l. – As she was talking tears were rolling down her eyes.

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

Can I say "Bonjou sòt Tijan" For "Bonjou FROM Tijan"?


No. It wouldn’t sound right.  Not for this specific expression.

We do use SOT to translate “from” such as in:

Sot isit la al laba a. – From here to there

Soti Miami rive New York. – From Miami to New York.

Soti anlè a rive jouk atè a. – From up there all the way to the floor

 

But sentences such as: “From me to you” or “Hello from Tijan” may have to be rephrased. Translating “from” with “sot” doesn’t work too well here.

You CAN, however,  say:  

Bonjou! Soti depi …(a location)

or

Soti nan bouch Tijan, resevwa yon bèl bonjou!

M’ap voye yon gwo kout chapo pou ou soti depi …(a location).

Tijan salye w

M wete chapo m

Tijan di Onè Respè

Kè m salye w.

It seems that I'm a little far off the intended greeting effect:) Can you think of anything else?

 

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Thursday, January 30, 2014

I'm learning H Creole straight from Haitians and it's awesome! However...I'd like to make sure I'm not swearing and cursing and talking dirty without realizing it :( Can you give me a heads up on what I should NOT be saying, so that I don't have a potty mouth ???


Heads up: Swearing and cursing may happen unintentionally – not just with dirty words but with some Creole terms that you put together and chances are you will offend no one because you are learning.  Haitians will most likely correct you and teach you better word choices. 

As far as things that you should not say is concerned, it can be a long list.  It may as well be innocent words translated from a dictionary such as “granmoun” means “adult” in Creole, and some people may prefer to be called “pèsonaj” (which is a translation for “mature person” or “adult” in English).  Or you may be seeing “jenès” which is Haitian Creole for “youth”, but it also translates “prostitute”.  So learning to say the right words (or not to say the wrong words) is definitely a learn-as-you-go type of thing. 

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

Bonswa,kouman mwen di "dear friend"in HC?

Ou kapab di:

Chè zanmi mwen
Or
Zanmi cheri mwen
My dear friend

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What does Chèri, Mwen vlew mean?

Dear lucky one :)
Someone said that to you?  And body language did not give it away?

Cheri mwen vle w - Honey (or sweetheart) I want you.

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

Ou Temwen Jewova? M'ap gade pou li site (?)M'ap aprann Kreyol

Non m pa Temwen Jewova, men m m sèvi Bondye ak anpil lafwa.
Mwen kontan w’ap aprann Kreyòl, m’epere sit la va ede w anpil

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

Melle mouin se Haitien tankou ou m bezwen pou ou di m kisa chita tann ye

“Chita tann”?  Yon “CHITA TANN”?  NOT “chita tande”, Right?

M’ap kalkile byen, si w se Ayisyen se pa yon kesyon sou  sa mo yo vle di – w’ap pale petèt osijè ekspresyon “YON CHITA TANN” nan, non?

Yon pyèj.  Ou kapab pare yon chita tann pou yon moun ki fè w ditò (jan ekspresyon an di l la). Yon malè ki chita la ap tan mèt li ;)

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

More "get" questions. How would you say "get in the car or get in bed?"

1.
Get in /get into/get onantre, monte
Get in the car  monte machin nan, antre nan machin nan
She got into the car. - Li te monte machin nan. Or Li te antre nan machin nan

 2.
Get on the bike. - Monte bisiklèt la
When you get on the bike do not  let go of the handle bar.
Lè w monte bisiklèt la, pa lage gidon an.

 
3.
How did you get into the house?
Kouman ou te antre nan kay la?
 
4.
Get in bedmonte kabann, ale nan kabann
 
5.
Get off/ get outdesann, soti
She got off the bus at exactly 4 o’clock.
Li te desann bis la a katrè pil.

6.
They all got out of the car and took off running.
Yo tout desann machin nan enpi yo pran kouri.
 
7.
To get somewhererive
I got home early.Mwen te rive lakay bonè
When will we get there?Kilè nou va rive la?

We’ll never get anywhere in this condition. - Nou p’ap janm rive okenn kote nan kondisyon sa a

8.
Get bettervin miyò, fè mye
Get worsevin pi mal
I see that you got better. – Mwen remake ou vin miyò.
It seems that he’s getting worse – Sanble l’ap vin pi mal.

 9.
Get rid ofdebarase (pronominal verb in this case)
I need to get rid of that sofa. – Mwen bezwen debarase m ak fotèy sa.
You need to get rid of that man.Ou bezwen debarase w ak nèg sa a
 
Haitian Creole ↔ English Reference, Look up Haitian Creole and English Words

Ki sa mo yo "clothespin" e "clothespins" an Kreyol Ayisyen? Mesi anpil.

clothespin - pens, pens pou tann rad
clothespins - pens yo, pens pou tann rad

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

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Do you know the lyrics to "Masire'm nan Kris" as performed by Lochard Remi at this site?http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bBk17e3HqZI&list=RDQNPBp6VU4lA Thank-you so much. Your website is helping me so much. --Rita

What's the meaning of jeu wont jeu? Does it mean the same as de jeu kontre manti kaba? Can you use it in a sentence?

You probably mean je wont je? It's about behaving properly when you know people are watching you.
Literally it means eye shame eye... as in one is ashamed to misbehave in public .
No, it does not mean the same as "de je kontre manti kaba".

Using it in a sentence.... Misye te move kou kong. Li ta rale soulye l pou l kalote timoun nan, men je wont je, li konnen se nan lasosyete li ye e te gen anpil je ki t'ap gade l.  Li pa't vle moun konnen move mès li donk li  blije  kalme l. - He was mad as hell. He could have removed his shoes to slap the child, but "eye shame eye", he knew he was in public and there were many eyes watching him.  He didn't want people to know about his bad habits so he had to calm down.
Haitian Creole ↔ English Reference, Look up Haitian Creole and English Words

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Can you help me to translate "It won't happen again". Mesi


It won’t happen again - Sa p’ap fèt ankò, or Sa p'ap rive ankò.

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Hi! How are you? I haven't seen a new post since 12/5/13 and I am just wondering if you are ok. I really appreciate all you have done with this site! I have learned SO much! I am hoping all is well and you are just taking a little break. :)

Thanks for checking on me.   My little break is over :)

Mèsi e toujou kenbe la


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

I was talking with a cook in Cap Haitien. She was cooking chayote squash. I was told that they were called "mirliton" in French and "konkonb" in Creole. I thought konkonb was cucumber. What's the story? If chayote is konkonb, how do you say "cucumber"?


Chayote squash is Mirliton (militon in Creole)

Cucumber is konkonm (you will most likely find the small cucumber in Haiti)

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

To (as in a destination): I am walking to my room. (M'ap mâché nan chanm m? or M'ap mâché al chanm m?) Or something else? Also I'm confused by how I would say "off of": Get off of me. Fall off of the table. Etc.

I.
I am walking to my room – “M’ap mache al nan chanm mwen” is correct

You can also say: M pral nan chanm mwen  (I’m going to my room)

Adding the Creole verb “ale” helps to indicate that you’re walking towards the room.

M’ap mache nan chanm mwen meansI am walking in my room”

 
II.
You may add the verb “ale” to indicate that you are moving to …a direction.

Examples:

N’ap kondi al Miami instead of N’ap kondi Miami (We’re driving to Miami)

Mwen te mache al lakay instead of Mwen te mache lakay (I walked home)

 
III.
As far as the preposition “to” is concerned, it may not be translated in Creole in these cases:

Mwen pral lekòl (I’m going to school)

Nou prale lavil. (We’re going to town)

Eske ou  prale legliz jodi a? (Will you go to church today?)

Nou prale lakay. (We’re going home)

 

 IV.
And sometimes we use “NAN”

Nan may indicate at, to, to the, in, or in the
Examples:

Li prale nan mache. (He’s going to the market)

Mwen pral nan magazen an. (I’m going to the store)

Mwen pral nan konsè a. (I’m going to the concert)

Mwen pral nan fèt la. (I’m going to the party)

Mwen prale nan reyinyon an. (I’m going to the meeting)

Li nan travay.  (She’s at work.)

Mwen te wè li lopital la. Or M te wè l nan lopital la. (I saw her at the hospital)

 
V.
And finally… a little correction in your sentence :)

Say “chanm mwen” instead of “chanm m”

We don’t usually use contractions after consonants

Chanm mwen, not chanm m (my room) We don't use the contracted “m” after “chanm” because of the ending consonant “m” in “chanm

Liv mwen, not liv m (my book) We don't use contracted “m” after “liv” because of the ending consonant “v” in “liv

Kabann ou not kabann w (your bed) We don't use contracted “w” after “kabann” because of the ending consonant “n” in “kabann

Bagay li not bagay l (his thing)  We don't use contracted “l”  after “bagay” because of the ending consonant “y” in bagay)

Mwen prale avèk ou not Mwen prale avèk w (I will go with you)  We don't use contracted “w” after “avèk” because of consonant “k” at the end of “avèk

BUT you CAN say Mwen prale avè w (I’m will go with you) We use contraction “w” after “avè” because we have a vowel “è” at the end of “avè

You can also say:

Papa mwen or papa m (my father) because “papa” ends with a vowel “a”.  SO it's ok to use a contraction after a word that ends with a vowel.

Mwen renmen ou or Mwen renmen w (I like you) because “renmen” ends with the nasal vowel “en”

manman mwen or manman m (my mother) because “manman” ends with the nasal vowel “an”

Rele mwen or Rele m (call me) because “rele” ends with a vowel “e”   

 
VI.
OFF OF / OFF  may be translated with some Haitian Creole expressions.  We may use Haitian Creole terms "retire" or "wete" (to take away or take out), or "soti" or "sot" (out of)
Examples:

Get off of me  (Get off me?)– Soti sou mwen, wete (or retire) kò w sou mwen

   Soti sou mwen – get away from me

  Wete kò w sou mwen – remove your body from me, remove yourself from me, get away from me.

She fell off heavenLi tonbe sot nan syèl

He fell off the horseLi sot tonbe sou chwal la.

She fell off the bed. – Li sot tonbe sou kabann nan.

The spoon fell off the table . – Kiyè a sot tonbe sou tab la

Take your feet off the tableWete pye w sou tab la

He took off his hatLi wete chapo l.
He took the hat off the table. - Li wete chapo a sou tab la.

Keep off the grassRete lwen gazon an. (Rete lwen – Stay away)
Keep the car off the grass. - Wete machin nan sou gazon an.
Same as:
Get off me. - Wete w sou mwen or Sot kò w sou mwen or Soti kò w sou mwen.

She got off the car.Li te desann machin nan. (Get off – desann, soti)

I’m going to get off right here.M’ap desann la a.

(check LABELS at the bottom)
 

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

Monday, January 27, 2014

Please translate, "will you tell them that I love and miss them? I pray for them every day." And "have you been to ... recently?"


Will you tell them that I love and miss them? I pray for them every day. - Di yo mwen renmen yo e m sonje yo.  Mwen lapriyè pou yo chak jou.

 

Have you been to ….. recently? - Eske ou ale/vizite …. tou dènyèman?

Recently – tou dènyèman (recently), lotrejou (the other day), tou lotrejou (just the other day), pa twò lontan (not too long ago)

Have you been to Haiti recently?Eske ou vizite  Ayiti tou dènyèman?

Did you visit Haiti recently?Eske w te vizite Ayiti tou dènyèman?

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

How would you explain what "Tete Chargee" means to someone not familiar with Kreyol or Haitian expressions?


Tèt chaje

Tèthead

Chajefull, loaded, burdened

Tèt chajeburdened head (literally)

So it can be an expression for dilemma, trouble, predicament

You can use it as verb or noun.

Using it as noun:

1.     Fanm sa a se yon tèt chaje. – This woman is trouble

2.     Pa ban m tèt chaje tanpri. – Don’t complicate things for me please

3.     Ala tèt chaje!What a dilemma!

4.     Mwen nan tèt chaje.I’m in hot water (in trouble).

Using it as verb:

5.     Pa vin chaje tèt mwen. – Don’t give me any worries.

6.     Poukisa w’ap chaje tèt mwen konsa?  Why are you stressing me out?

7.     Pa kite mesye sa a chaje tèt ou ak problem li non.Don’t let this man stress you about his problems.

8.     Pa chaje tèt ou twòp ak bagay sa yo.Don’t worry too much about these things

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