Lesson 8: Burmese Adverbs | ကြိယာဝိသေသန
Imagine yourself driving a red Ferrari down the long and winding mountain road. Suddenly, at the steep corner turn, you lost control, and you find yourself in the clouds. You quickly press the emergency button with your shaken hand, and the parachute opens. As you take a deep breath, you see the blue mountain behind the clouds in your rear-view mirror. You will now never forget the meaning of MOUN3, (to drive) on the MOUNtain road. That's a memory technique where you are learning to associate the word MOUN3 with MOUNtain. Here is a video clip with less power than a red Ferrari.
Imagine yourself driving a red Ferrari down the long and winding mountain road. Suddenly, at the steep corner turn, you lost control, and you find yourself in the clouds. You quickly press the emergency button with your shaken hand, and the parachute opens. As you take a deep breath, you see the blue mountain behind the clouds in your rear-view mirror. You will now never forget the meaning of MOUN3, (to drive) on the MOUNtain road. That's a memory technique where you are learning to associate the word MOUN3 with MOUNtain. Here is a video clip with less power than a red Ferrari. [28 seconds]Posted by Naing Tinnyuntpu on Monday, May 16, 2016
Verbs in the previous lesson are quite useful in telling others what you want to do. But, sooner or later you discover that you still
cannot communicate what you really want to say. Something seems to be missing. For example, you need to go to the embassy in a hurry.
You know the words သွား | thwa3
means to go and မောင်း |
means to drive.
You have memorized some useful nouns such as သံရုံး |
thun2-yone3 for embassy.
In addition, you know the general formula for constructing a sentence which says you want to do something:
xxxx ချင်တယ် | xxxx chin2 deare2 -- I want to xxxx.
So, you can tell the driver:
သံရုံး သွားချင်တယ် | thun2-yone3 thwa3 chin2 deare2 -- I want to go to the embassy.
You can follow up with the order:
မောင်း | moun3 -- drive!
or using the softer tone:
မောင်းပါ | moun3 ba2 -- Please drive!
You still find the sentence unsatisfactory because you have expressed only half of what you really want to say: You are in a hurry. You want him
to drive fast.
သံရုံး အမြန်သွားချင်တယ် | thun2-yone3 a-myan2 thwa3 chin2 deare2 -- I want to go to the embassy fast. (embassy + quickly + go + want + affirmative)
မြန်မြန်မောင်းပါ | myan2-myan2 moun3 ba2 -- Please drive fast!
The five types of Burmese Adverbs
The Adverb in the Burmese grammar has a Pali origin, and is known as ကြိယာဝိသေသန | kri1-ya2 wi1-thay2-tha1-na1. The word ကြိယာ | kri1-ya2 refers to the action words (Verbs), and ဝိသေသန | wi1-thay2-tha1-na1 means to modify or to qualify. Burmese adverbs qualify the verbs similar to English.
Words that describe "how" part of the action words known as အမူအရာပြ ကြိယာဝိသေသန | a-mu2-a-ya2-pya1 kri1-ya2 wi1-thay2-tha1-na1 belong to a type of Myanmar adverbs that show gestures, manner, facial expressions, and behavior of human and other living beings. Examples:
- ရိုရိုသေသေ ကိုင်ပါ။ | yo2-yo2 thay2-thay2 kine2 ba2 - Please handle with care.
- နှေးနှေးကွေးကွေး | hnay3-hnay3 kway3-kway3 - sluggishly.
wome3-wome3 dine3-dine3 - noisily.
Myanmar grammar put the conditions of things such as road conditions affected by the heavy storm in a different classification of adverbs. It is called အခြေအနေပြ ကြိယာဝိသေသန | a-chay2-a-nay2-pya1 kri1-ya2 wi1-thay2-tha1-na1. Examples:
Examples in complete sentences:
မိုး အကြီးအကျယ် ရွာနေတယ်။ |
ywa2 nay2 deare2 - Rain is pouring down
တဲပုတ်တွေ ဖရိုဖရဲ ဖြစ်ကုန်ပြီ |
pfyit kone2 byi2
- Huts are in disarray.
- မိုး အကြီးအကျယ် ရွာနေတယ်။ | mo3 a-kji3-a-kjeare2 ywa2 nay2 deare2 - Rain is pouring down heavily.
Another type of Burmese adverb known as အချိန်ပြ ကြိယာဝိသေသန | a-chain2-pya1 kri1-ya2 wi1-thay2-tha1-na1 shows time or "when" part of action words:
အခုသွား | a-khu1 thwa3 -- Go now!
Note that this adverb time word a-khu1 meaning "now" will be a noun a-khu1 if used with the descriptive adjective word such as "sunny" or "raining".
More examples of adverbs that show time in relation to the action word (verb):
- I am about to go now.
ခဏနေ စားကြမယ်။ |
sa3 ja1 meare2 - We shall eat
in a while.
- အခုသွားတော့မယ်။ | a-khu1 thwa3 dau1 meare2 - I am about to go now.
အမေး ကြိယာဝိသေသန | a-may3 kri1-ya2 wi1-thay2-tha1-na1 are interrogative adverbs such as "when" and "how" questions in relation to the verbs. Examples:
The fifth type of Burmese adverbs known as ပမာဏပြ ကြိယာဝိသေသန | pa1-ma2-na1-pya1 kri1-ya2 wi1-thay2-tha1-na1 shows the magnitude or size. Examples:
Examples in complete sentences:
လုံးဝ သဘောမတူဘူး။ |
bu3 - I absolutely disagree.
- Just put a little.
- လုံးဝ သဘောမတူဘူး။ | lone3-wah1 tha1-bau3-ma1-tu2 bu3 - I absolutely disagree.
Adverb example in a song
The song in the video clip below used the adverb တစ်ကြိမ်တစ်ခါ | da1-jain2-ta1-kha2 meaning once in a while.
တစ်ကြိမ်တစ်ခါ | da1-jain2-ta1-kha2 -- once in a while (adverb)
သာ | dtha2 -- only (particle)
ရ | yah1 -- have (verb)
သော | dthau3 -- (particle) convert the clause into adjective to mean "rare"
ပွဲတော် | pweare3-dau2 -- festive occasion (noun)
အတူတူ | a-tu2-tu2 -- together (adverb)
ပျော် | pyau2 -- be happy (verb)
တစ်ကြိမ်တစ်ခါသာ ရသောပွဲတော် အတူတူပျော် | da1-jain2-ta1-kha2 dtha2 yah1 dthau3 pweare3-dau2 a-tu2-tu2 pyau2 -- We have this festival only once in a while. Let's be happy together.
Once in a while only
We have this festival only once in a while. Let's be happy together. [29 seconds] da1-jain2-ta1-kha2 -- once in a while (adverb) dtha2 -- only (particle) yah1 -- have (verb) dthau3 -- (particle) convert the clause into adjective to mean "rare" pweare3-dau2 -- festive occasion (noun) a-tu2-tu2 -- together (adverb) pyau2 -- be happy (verb)Posted by Naing Tinnyuntpu on Saturday, May 14, 2016
More Burmese Adverb Examples
Now, we will add adverbs to the verbs we have met in the previous lesson. The following are mixtures of complete sentences, verbal commands, suggestions and phrases. They are organized in the same sequence as in lesson 7.
အများကြီး စား |
a-mya3-ji3 sa3 -- Have your fill of the stomach!; eat
a lot. (a lot + eat)
ချက်ချင်း သွား | chet-chin3 thwa3 -- Go immediately! (immediately + go)
ကောင်းကောင်း လုပ် | -- Do it nicely! (good + good + do)
မြန်မြန် ပြေး | myan2-myan2 pyay3 -- Run quickly! (quick + quick + run)
အသေချ | a-thay2 cha1 -- Attack! ; Charge! ; fight till the death! (deadly + fight)
မှန်မှန် လာပါ | hmun2-hmun2 la2 ba2 -- Please come regularly. (regularly + come + suggestion)
You will note that many of those Burmese adverbs are formed by doubling of words. For example, koun3 means ကောင်း | good (adjective), and ကောင်းကောင်း | koun3-koun3 means nicely (adverb), or in a good manner. Those double-word adverbs are frequently used in spoken form and they are further classified as နှစ်ကြိမ်ထပ်ကြိယာဝိသေသန | hna1-kjain2-htut kri1-ya2- wi1-thay2-tha1-na1 in Burmese grammar, which means "two-times-repeat adverbs".
Busy Street Activities
သိပ် | thate - so much (adverb)
ကူ | ku2 - help (verb)
ချင် | chin2 - want to (particle used as verb suffix to mean "ku2-chin2" - want to help)
တာ | ta2 - modifies "want to help"(verb) to "the thought that wants to help" (noun)
ပဲ | beare3 - emphasis ending word: "exactly! (particle)
လူတွေ | lu2-dway2 -- people (human + plural)
အရမ်း | a-yan3 -- too much (adverb)
တိုး | toe3 -- to push and shove (verb)
နေ | nay2 -- particle equivalent to present participle "ing"
ကြ | ja1 -- particle that modifies the verb "to push" to plural
တယ် | deare2 -- affirmation ending word (postpositional marker)
When you are sick
In Burmese, the word သောက် | thout (to drink) is used for "taking" medicine in both liquid and tablet forms.
Waking up in the morning
အိပ်ရာ စေါစေါ ထပါ | ate-ya2 sau3-sau3 hta1 ba2 -- Please wake up early! (bed + early + to wake up (or) to stand upright + suggestion)
Preparing to go to work
မိတ်ကပ် လှလှပပလိမ်း | mate-kut hla1-hla1-pa1-pa1 lain3 -- Put on the make-up (beautifully); put on cosmetics to make oneself attractive and beautiful (cosmetic + beautifully + rub)
Morning Rush Hour
ma1-net tine3 -- every morning (morning [noun] + every [particle])
အလုပ် | a-loat -- work (noun)
စေါစေါ | sau3-sau3 -- early (adverb)
သွား | thwa3 -- go (verb)
တယ် | deare2 -- affirmation ending word (postpositional marker)
မနက်တိုင်း အလုပ် စေါစေါသွားတယ် | ma1-net tine3 a-loat sau3-sau3 thwa3 deare2- - [he, she, I] go(es) to work early every morning.
ဘတ်စကား | but-sa1-ka3 -- bus (noun)
အကြာကြီး | a-kja2-ji3 -- for a long time (adverb)
စေါင့် | soun1- - wait (verb)
နေရ | nay2-yah1 -- had to (particle)
တယ် | deare2 -- affirmation ending word. (postpositional marker)
but-sa1-ka3 a-kja2-ji3 soun1 nay2-yah1 deare2 -- I had to wait for the bus for a long time.
ဘတ်(စ်)ကား အကြာကြီး စောင့်နေရတယ် | but-sa1-ka3 a-kja2-ji3 soun1 nay2-yah1 deare2 -- I had to wait for the bus for a long time.
အချိန် | a-chain2 -- time (noun)
သိပ် | thate -- too much (adverb)
မ | ma1 -- not (particle)
ဖြုန်း | pfyone3 -- to waste (verb)
ပါ | ba2 -- polite emphasis (particle)
နဲ့ | neare1 -- negative imperative (particle)
Although let is a singular form meaning hand, it is understood to refer to both hands of a single person. The plural let dway2 refers to hands of many people. (See lesson 32 for singular and plural terms.)
Near the end of Shift
နာရီ မကြာခဏ ကြည့် | na2-yi2 ma1-kja2 kha1-nah1 kji1 -- Watch the clock every now and then. (clock or watch + not + take a long time + again and again + to look or to glance)
This word is interesting. မကြာခဏ | ma1-kja2 kha1-nah1 is a coined word using မကြာ | ma1-kja2, which means not + take a long time, and ခဏခဏ | kha1-nah1 kha1-nah1, which means again and again. So, မကြာခဏ | ma1-kja2 kha1-nah1 means you do something again and again before a long time. The appropriate English translation is every now and then.
End of Shift
အခုပဲ အလုပ်ဆင်းတယ် | a-khu1 beare3 a-loat hsin3 deare2 -- I just finished work, as in "the shift is just over." (now + just + work + to go down + affirmation)
အိမ် | ain2 -- house or home (noun)
ချောချောမွန်မွန် | chau3-chau3 moon2 moon2 -- smoothly; smooth-sailing without obstacles on the way (adverb)
ပြန်ရောက်လာ | pyan2-yout-la2 -- return (verb) (return + arrive + come)
ပြီ | byi2 -- ending word "has/have" (postpositional marker)
ain2 chau3-chau3 moon2 moon2 pyan2-yout-la2 byi2 -- [ He, she, I] has/have come back home safely!
အိမ် ချောချောမွန်မွန် ပြန်ရောက်လာပြီ | ain2 chau3-chau3 moon2 moon2 pyan2-yout-la2 byi2 -- [ He, she, I] has/have come back home safely!
ဖိနပ် | pfa1-nut -- shoes, slippers, footwear (noun)
ကို | go2 -- to (postpositional marker that makes slipper the "object" of the sentence.)
ဒီမှာ | de2 hma2 -- here (adjective in English = Burmese pronoun + postpositional marker)
သပ်သပ်ရပ်ရပ် | thut-thut-yut-yut - neatly (adverb)
ချွတ် | choot -- remove from body; take off (verb)
ပါ | ba2 -- polite ending word (particle)
ဖိနပ်ကို ဒီမှာ သပ်သပ်ရပ်ရပ် ချွတ်ပါ | pfa1-nut go2 de2 hma2 thut-thut-yut-yut choot ba2 -- Please remove your shoes neatly here.
Time to cook
ဟင်း | hin3 -- dishes such as fish, meat, chicken, and vegetable to be eaten with rice (noun)
တွေ | dway2 -- (particle that makes the noun plural)
ဖြစ်ကတတ်ဆန်း | pfyit-ga1-dut-hsun3 - carelessly; not properly done (adverb)
မ | ma1 - negative (particle)
ချက် | chet -- cook (verb)
ပါ | ba2 -- polite word (particle)
နဲ့ | neare1 -- negative imperative telling not to (particle)
ဟင်းတွေ ဖြစ်ကတတ်ဆန်း မချက်ပါနဲ့ | hin3 dway2 pfyit-ga1-dut-hsun3 ma1 chet ba2 neare1 -- Please don't anyhow cook the dishes.
Taking a bath
ပန်းကန် | ba1-gun2 -- plates (noun)
စင် | sin2 -- be clean; be free from impurities(verb)
အောင် | oun2 -- in order to (conjunction)
သေသေချာချာ | thay2-thay2-cha2-cha2 -- thoroughly (adverb)
ဆေး | hsay3 -- wash (verb)
ပန်းကန် စင်အောင် သေသေချာချာ ဆေး | ba1-gun2 sin2 oun2 thay2-thay2-cha2-cha2 hsay3 -- Thoroughly wash the dishes in order to be clean.
ရေ | yay2 -- water (noun)
လုံ | lone2 -- to keep something tight (verb)
အောင် | oun2 -- in order to (conjunction)
ဘယ်လို | beare2-lo2 -- how (adverb)
ပိတ် | pate -- close (verb)
မလဲ | ma1 leare3 -- ending question word.
ရေလုံအောင် ဘယ်လိုပိတ်မလဲ | yay2 lone2 oun2 beare2-lo2 pate ma1 leare3 -- How do I shut the faucet tight so that water will not be dripping?
The word အောင် | oun2 is a positive word which means "to pass", such as in "to pass the exam" (verb). It can be appended to several other words as conjunction to mean "in order to make it happen". For example, စင်အောင် | sin2 oun2 means "in order to make it clean", where စင် | sin2 means "be spotlessly clean".
ရေဒီယို | yay2-di2-yo2 -- Radio
အကျယ်ကြီး | a-kjeare2 ji3 -- loudly
နားထောင် | na3-htoun2 -- to listen
ရေဒီယို အကျယ်ကြီး နားထောင် | yay2-di2-yo2 a-kjeare2 ji3 na3-htoun2 -- listen to the radio so loudly.
တီဗီ | TV
တိုးတိုး | toe3-toe3 -- opposite of "loudly"; in low volume
ပဲ | beare3 -- only
ဖွင့် | pfwin1 -- to open
တီဗီ တိုးတိုးပဲ ဖွင့် | TV toe3-toe3 beare3 pfwin1 -- Don't turn on the TV volume so loud; watch TV with low volume
Note that in Burmese, the above sentence is not a negative imperative, but a positive suggestion.
Say your prayers
ဆု အမြဲတောင်း | hsu1 a-myeare3 toun3 -- Always say your Grace [Christian rituals] (wish or trophy + always + to ask for)
ညတိုင်း ဘုရားမှန်မှန် ရှိခိုး | nya1-dine3 pfa1-ya3 hmun2-hmun2 shit-kho3 -- Say prayers regularly every night. (night + every + God or the Buddha or a symbol representing the Buddha + regularly + to pay respect)
Time to sleep
ခဏနေ အိပ်ချင်မူးတူးနဲ့ မီးပိတ်မယ် | kha1-na1-nay2 ate-chin2-mu3-tu3 neare1 mi3 pate meare2 -- Later on, [I will be] sleepily switching off the light. (later on + sleepily + with + light or fire + to close + going to)
Take note of the omission of "you" and "I" in the above Burmese phrases. They are implicitly implied and unnecessary in such phrases.
အပတ်တိုင်း | a-pup-tine3 -- every week (week + every)
မှန်မှန် | hmun2-hmun2 -- regularly (adverb)
ဈေး | zay3 -- market (noun)
ဝယ် | weare2- - buy (verb)
တယ် | deare2 -- affirmation (postpositional marker)
အပတ်တိုင်း မှန်မှန် ဈေးဝယ်တယ် | a-pup-tine3 hmun2-hmun2 zay3 weare2 deare2 -- I shop regularly every week.
Myanmar housewives probably shop for dry goods every week. Majority of households in Myanmar buy fresh vegetables and small portions of meat, fish, or chicken almost every day in the neighborhood market. There are also sellers -- usually women-- going around some neighborhood every morning, each carrying a big basket of grocery items on their heads and crying out the melody of their signature voices.
Adverbs should be studied after the verbs. In Burmese language grammar, particles and postpositional markers are also important because verbs or adverbs alone will not work. Those parts of speech will be discussed later in detail.