Thai language has no plurals



(Re: Michael Nightingale’s response: “Yes but it is not possible to use the word ‘farangs’ since you cannot pluralise a Thai word. Despite this the error is so frequent that one might begin to think it’s legitimate” in PM Mailbag “When an R is really an N – or an L”, Friday, 08 March 2013) – Michael, you are correct Thai language has no plurals. But as English is my mother language it is the norm for me to use plurals. Speaking or writing in English it’s ok for me to say 10 farangs. However, as Thais have no plurals they fall back to using “classifiers”. The nearest I find in my studies to farang is the fruit known as guava (a pink fleshed fruit about the size of a small apple). If I use the classifier “look” or sometimes “bia” I can write “farang sip look”. Ten guava fruit. If I change the classifier to farang sip “khon” I am changing it to read farang ten person. I enjoy learning to read & write Thai but have a long road ahead of me. I realise I may never become perfect and welcome any constructive criticism.

Bryan Patricks