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Lesson Transcript

Nei5 ho2, ngo5 hai6 Olivia. Hi everybody! I’m Olivia.
Welcome to CantoneseClass101.com’s “saam1 fan1 zung1 gwong2 dung1 waa2”. The fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn Cantonese.
In the last lesson, we learned the phrase M4 ho2 ji3 si1, nei5 sik1 m4 sik1 gong2 jing1 man2? "Excuse me, do you speak English?" We mentioned the word m4 ho2 ji3 si1 which means "excuse me" in Cantonese.
In this lesson, we’re going to learn how to use m4 ho2 ji3 si1 and other words when apologizing in Cantonese.
We should use m4 ho2 ji3 si1 in formal situations, such as when we are talking to, or asking a stranger for help. For example:
m4 ho2 ji3 si1, jap6 hau2 hai2 bin1? "Excuse me, where is the entrance?"
m4 ho2 ji3 si1, nei5 caai2 zyu6 ngo5 go3 doi2.
"Excuse me, you’re stepping on my bag."
Sometimes we also hear people say m4 goi1. As mentioned in lesson 2, m4 goi1 means “thank you”, but it also means “excuse me” as used to draw somebody's attention. It is commonly used when ordering food, or pushing your way through a crowd. We can use this phrase in both formal and informal speech.
m4 goi1, jat1 bui1 jit6 naai5 caa4.
“Excuse me, a cup of hot milk tea please.”
m4 goi1 ze3 ze3.
“Excuse me, please let me through.”
But unlike m4 ho2 ji3 si1, we cannot use m4 goi1 when apologizing. So when you do something bad, remember to put on that sorry face and use m4 ho2 ji3 si1.
m4 hou2 ji3 si1, ngo5 jau6 ci4 dou3.
“sorry, I’m late again.”
m4 ho2 ji3 si1 can be used for either “excuse me” or “I’m sorry.” But if you really want to apologize for something, it might be better to use a different phrase.
That phrase is deoi3 m4 zyu6. It means “I am sorry.”
[slowly] deoi3 m4 zyu6
For example:
deoi3 m4 zyu6, ngo5 daa2 laan6 zo2 nei5 bou6 din6 nou5.
“Sorry, I broke your computer.”
Now it’s time for Olivia’s Insights.
If you accidentally bump into someone in Hong Kong, you can say m4 ho2 ji3 si1, "excuse me" or deoi3 m4 zyu6 “I’m sorry”, but never m4 goi1.
Are you able to count in Cantonese? In the next lesson we will learn the numbers in Cantonese from one to ten!
I'll be waiting for you in the next lesson of saam1 fan1 zung1 gwong2 dung1 waa2. haa6 ci3 gin3!


Please to leave a comment.
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CantoneseClass101.com Verified
Friday at 06:30 PM
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Hi listeners! Have you ever been in the situation of not being able to apologize in Hong Kong?

CantoneseClass101.com Verified
Wednesday at 01:21 AM
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Hi Nao,

Thanks for your question.

When someone says 唔好意思 (m4 hou2 ji3 si1) ~ Excuse me/ Sorry, it is common to respond with 唔緊要 (m4 gan2 jiu3) ~ Never mind. 😉


Team CantoneseClass101.com

Saturday at 11:55 AM
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How do you respond to 唔好意思 ?

Sunday at 09:51 AM
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Hello Frank,


deoi3 m4 zyu6, ngo5 daa2 laan6 zo2 nei5 bou6 din6 nou

"Sorry, I broke your computer."

咗 (zo2)~ past tense suffix, already

打爛咗(daa2 laan6 zo2) ~ have already broken, broke

部(bou6)~ is the measure word for electronic devices such as TV, cell phone or computer

一部電腦(jat1 bou6 din6 nou) ~ one computer

Thank you for your comment and feel free to send us any other questions.


Team CantoneseClass101.com

Tuesday at 02:26 AM
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Excuse me. We are trying to understand and break down the sentence

Sorry I broke your computer.

We understand ngo5 (I) daa2 laan6 (broke) nei5 (your) and din6 nou5 (computer) What are the other words zo2 and bou6 saying in this sentence.

Thanks for the great lessons

Sunday at 09:55 AM
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Hello Andrew G,

I am using the Cantonese Google Input Tool. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vwp5TwYGsnw

To study more Chinese Characters, you can visit the links at our site...

The Chinese Radicals


The Basic Rules of Stroke Order


Honzi Basics & Stroke Orders


Introduction to Cantonese Writing



Team CantoneseClass101.com

Andrew G
Tuesday at 02:05 AM
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How to make it possible to write comments in honzi?

Tuesday at 11:35 PM
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Hi Llama Corn,

Funny name! :grin:

Thank you for your comment! Glad to know that you're enjoying our lessons! :thumbsup:


Team CantoneseClass101.com

Llama Corn
Friday at 01:22 PM
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You guys are the best!

Wednesday at 11:45 AM
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Hi Louis Nguyen,

Thank you for your comment! :grin::thumbsup:


Team CantoneseClass101.com

Louis Nguyen
Tuesday at 10:39 PM
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