Lesson 2 – Middle Class Consonants

Thai consonants are divided into three classes; Middle class, High class and Low class.  See all 44 alphabets here.

There are nine middle class consonants (อักษรกลาง [àk –sŏrn glaang]) อักษรกลางมี 9 ตัว

[1] ก.ไก่ (Gaw Gài)

ไก่  (gài) means chicken

[2] จ.จาน (Jaw Jaan)

จาน[jaan] means plate

[3] ด.เด็ก (Daw Dèk) : เด็ก [ dèk] means kid

[4] ต.เต่า (Dtaw Dtào) : เต่า [dtào] means turtle

These two letters looks similar. The turtle has a broken head, but the kid has smooth head:)

[5] ฎ.ชฎา (Daw Chá-daa) : ชฎา (chá-daa) means Thai theatrical crown

[6] ฏ.ปฏัก (Dtaw Bpà-dtàk) : ปฏัก ( bpà-dtàk) means spear

These two letters are rarely used in common words, they are used mostly in Thai names. So most of the time  ด.เด็ก([Daw Dèk) is used for ‘d’ sound.  ต.เต่า (Dtaw Dtào) is used for ‘dt’ sound.

[7] บ.ใบไม้ ( Baw Bai máai) : ใบไม้ (bai máai) means leaf

[8] ป.ปลา (Bpaw Bplaa) : ปลา (bplaa) means fish

[9] อ.อ่าง (Aw àang): อ่าง means basin

*It is both consonant and vowel.

 This is how Thai students recite the middle class consonants– > ไก่จิกเด็กตายบนปากโอ่ง /gài(ก) jìk(จ) dèk(ด,ฎ) dtaai(ต,ฏ) bon(บ) bpàak(ป) òong(อ)/ (chicken peck a child to death on top of a big earthen jar). It sounds scary but it works! 555

Middle Class Consonant

Learn how to write each letter in the next lesson.

Credit the picture from a book from my childhood:)

After this we will get to know Thai vowels, then we can start reading! Feel free to let me know if you have any questions.


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11 Responses to Lesson 2 – Middle Class Consonants

  1. Aron 06/11/2016 at 17:08 #

    Im confused, are all consonant in thai represent a thing? Animal ? Etc? Thanks mod

    • Mod 06/12/2016 at 13:42 #

      Sawatdii ka Aron,
      The consonants don’t actually represent anything they are the sounds of the language, but to make it easier for learners to remember we pair each consonant with a word that starts with the consonant i.e. ก which is ‘g’ sound is paird with the word ไก่ /gài/ which means chicken.

  2. Dylan 12/03/2015 at 10:55 #

    This confused me

    • Mod 21/03/2015 at 12:28 #

      Can you explain what you don’t understand please?

      • justine 01/11/2016 at 14:24 #

        I’m confused as well.

        as an example, using Gaw Gài: what sound does the consonant make?

        does it make a Gaw sound? is the symbol ก named Gaw Gài?

        • Mod 06/12/2016 at 15:23 #

          ก give the ‘g’ sounds similar to ‘g’ sound in the word ‘get’ in English. And yes the alphabet ก is called ‘gaw gài’. 🙂

  3. Mark 10/10/2012 at 01:48 #

    Can you please do a blog on low and high class consonants like this one. As well as short vowels. Kop kun krap Kruu Mod

  4. fajar 11/08/2012 at 22:11 #

    guess i need to go find a real thai here to teach me how to write Thai properly @_@” 😛

  5. Lennie van Lent 04/06/2012 at 21:06 #

    Is it right that each consonant has a name and a pronunciation . How do I know the sound or pronunciation of number 6 and 7.

  6. Michel 02/06/2012 at 01:07 #

    Some good memnonic to remember the middle class consonants?

    • Mod 02/06/2012 at 01:46 #

      Very good ka. Just one typo :ไก่จิกเด็กตาย”บน”ปากโอ่ง นะคะ 🙂

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