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Telugu

Here are a few words, chosen for their usefulness to the traveler.  Keep your sentence structure simple.  Practice with friendly locals, and polish up your pronunciation.  You'll be surprised at the results, and will be able to pick up new words as you need them.  The polite forms have been given here, and you can also add "Sir", often pronounced "Saar".  or Madam to requests or questions.  The "~" symbol indicates where the object will go.  Usually before the verb.  There is a pronunciation guide at the bottom of the page.

greetings
yes
no (it's not)
Namaskaaram
awanu
kaadhu
don't have
I don't have a book
leedhu
book leedhu
is there (do you have) ~
Do you have a room?
~ undhaa ?
room undhaa?
there is (I have) ~
Yes, I have a room
~ undhi
awanu, room undhi
where is ~
Where is the station?
how much is ~
How much is a room?
~ yekada ?
Station yekada?
~ yentha
Room yentha?
this
that
how much is ~
How much is this?
How much is that?
idhi
adhi
~ yentha
Idhi yentha?
Adhi yentha?
please give ~
Please give coffee
~ iiyandi
coffee iiyandi
(I) want ~
don't want~
~ kaavali
~ wadhuu
I want black coffee
I don't want sugar
black coffee kaavali
sugar wadhuu
a little
a little sugar
kunjum
sugar kunjum
big ~
small ~
big car
small book
peddha ~
chinna ~
peddha car
chinna book
I know ~
I don't know ~
I know a little Telugu
I don't know Telugu
~ tellisu
~ telliyadhu
Telegu kunjum tellisu
Telegu telliyadhu
please go
please come
don't you have ~
don't you have a room?
vellandi
randi
~ leedhaa ?
room leedhaa?
Thank you
English "thanks" is common
Goodbye (I go and come)
(Said when you are leaving)
Goodbye (please go & come)
(Said when the other is leaving)
vandanaalu / thanks

velli vastaanu

velli rundi

NUMBERS

one
two
three
four
five
six
seven
eight
nine
ten
okati
rendu
muudu
naalagu
aidhu
aaru
yeerdu
yenamidhi
tomadhi
padhi

Pronunciation Simplified

Indian languages use a few more sounds than most Western languages.  Some of the constants, like "d" or "t" have a harder and a softer version than the ones in English.  There are also long and short vowel sounds, and you will be more easily understood if you greatly exaggerate the length of your long vowels.  For example, to say "yes" in Tamil you would say "aama", but it would not be wrong to pronounce it 'aaaaaaama'.  It would be very hard to over lengthen long vowel sounds.

The vowels are pronounced as follows.
The short "a" is like the sound in "aha".  
The long form - "aa" - sounds like the drawn out sound of "ah, yes"

The short "i" is like the sound in "ill".
The long form - "ii" - sounds like the drawn out sound of "eel"

The short "e" is like the sound in "hey".  
The long "ee" is like the drawn out sound of "hale"

The short "o" is like the sound in "snow".
The long "oo" is like the drawn out sound of "pole"

The short "u" is like the sound in "rue".
The long "uu" is like the drawn out sound of "rule"

The short sound "ai" is like the sound in "height".
There is no long form.

Rather than give you further complex explanations of pronunciations, we suggest you take a few minutes with a friendly waiter or room boy and ask him how to pronounce the words.  There are a few sounds in Indian languages that do not exist in Western languages, and you have to learn to hear and say them for yourself.

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