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A: Top 25 Cantonese Questions You Need to Know - Lesson 5: Do you speak Cantonese? In each lesson of this 25 part series, you'll master a common question for Cantonese learners, and then learn how to answer it like a native. You'll learn how these key phrases work by breaking them down into each component. Then through repetition and new vocabulary, you'll expand your understanding of the question, its answers, and any variations.
In this lesson, you'll learn how to respond to the common question “Do you speak Cantonese?” In Cantonese this is
B: 你識唔識講廣東話?
The first word in the question is
B: 你
A: meaning “you” in English.
B: (Slow, by syllable) 你
A: Listen again and repeat.
B: 你
{Pause}
A: This pattern of first introducing a word at natural speed, providing the translation, breaking it down, and then giving it again at natural speed will be repeated throughout the series. Try to speak aloud as often as possible. The next word in the question is
B: 識唔識
A: meaning “to know or not.”
B: (Slow, by syllable) 識唔識
A: Now repeat.
B: 識唔識
{Pause}
Listen to the the first 2 words of the question and repeat.
B: 你識唔識
{pause}
And after that
B: 講
A: meaning “to speak.”
B: (Slow, by syllable) 講
A: Now repeat.
B: 講
{Pause}
Listen to the the first 3 words of the question and repeat.
B: 你識唔識講
{pause}
And after that
B: 廣東話
A: meaning “Cantonese language.”
B: (Slow, by syllable) 廣東話
A: Now repeat.
B: 廣東話
{Pause}
Listen to the entire question and repeat.
B: 你識唔識講廣東話?
{pause}
A: It literally means “Do you know or not know speaking Cantonese?
A: You will hear this common question again and again throughout your studies. Master the following pattern and responses to the question “Do you speak Cantonese?”
B: 識少少。
A: "I speak a little.” Again, slowly. Repeat the phrase.
B: (Slow) 識少少。
{pause}
A: Let's break it down from the beginning. The first word:
B: 識
A: meaning “to know. “
B: (Slow, by syllable) 識
A: Now repeat
B: 識
{Pause}
A: And after that
B: 少少
A: meaning “a bit”, “a little bit.”
B: (Slow, by syllable) 少少
A:Now repeat.
B: 少少
{Pause}
A: Listen to the speaker say, “I speak a little” and then repeat.
B: 識少少。
{pause}
A: To use a different phrase, replace “a little” with “some.”
B: 一啲
A: some
B: (slow) 一啲 (regular) 一啲
A: Listen to the phrase again, this time with “some”
B: 識一啲。
A: It mostly stays the same. Simply replace “a little” with “some.” Say “I speak some.”
{pause}
B: 識一啲。
A: To use a different phrase, replace “some” with “a little tiny bit.”
B: 啲啲
A: a (tiny) bit
B: (slow) 啲啲 (regular) 啲啲
A: Listen to the phrase again, this time with “a little tiny bit.”
B: 識啲啲。
A: It mostly stays the same. Simply replace “some” with “a little tiny bit.” Say “I speak a little tiny bit.”
{pause}
B: 識啲啲。
A: To expand on the pattern, replace “a little tiny bit” with “quite a lot.”
B: 大部分
A: quite a lot
B: (slow) 大部分 (regular) 大部分
A: Listen to the phrase again, this time with “quite a lot”
B: 識大部分。
A: It mostly stays the same. Simply replace “a little tiny bit” with “quite a lot.” Say “I speak quite a lot.”
{pause}
B: 識大部分。
A: To say "no", in a simple way, just say:
B: 唔識。
A: Which is like saying “No, I don't speak it.” in English. Let's hear it slowly.
B: (Slowly) 唔識。
A: And one more time at normal speed:
B: 唔識。
Now it's time for a quiz. Imagine you are visiting Hong Kong and someone asks you if you speak Cantonese . You want to answer that you speak a little. Respond to the question.
B: 你識唔識講廣東話? (five seconds) 識少少。
A: Now you want to answer that you speak some. Respond to the question.
B: 你識唔識講廣東話? (five seconds) 識一啲。
A: You want to answer that you speak a little tiny bit. . Answer the speaker's question.
B: 你識唔識講廣東話? (five seconds) 識啲啲。
A: Now you want to answer that you speak quite a lot. Respond to the question.
B: 你識唔識講廣東話? (five seconds) 識大部分。
A: Now you want to ask someone if they speak Cantonese. Ask the question.
(5 seconds)
B: 你識唔識講廣東話?
{pause}
A: Now it's time to answer the question with actual information about yourself.
B: 你識唔識講廣東話?
{pause}
A: This is the end of Lesson 5

6 Comments

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😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍

CantoneseClass101.com Verified
Friday at 06:30 PM
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Do You Speak Cantonese?

CantoneseClass101.com Verified
Sunday at 05:55 PM
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Hi Nazir,


Thanks for the question!


You can say:

雖然唔係大學畢業,但我教香港人英文教得好好


Romanisation is:

seoi1 jin4 m4 hai6 daai6 hok6 bat1 jip6, daan6 ngo5 gaau3 hoeng1 gong2 jan4 jing1 man4 gaau3 dak1 hou2 hou2.


Arnold

Team CantoneseClass101.com

nazir
Thursday at 05:02 PM
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how to say , I am not graduate , but I can teach english very well in hongkong.

CantoneseClass101.com Verified
Thursday at 09:35 AM
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Hi surgaev,


You're right, you can say nei5 sik1 m4 sik1 gong2 gwong2 zau1 waa2?

Although there's been a debate on whether gwong2 dung1 waa2 = gwong2 zau1 waa2, people are familiar with both terms in Guangzhou


The verb zi1 (知) is used for "knowing a fact"; while sik1 (識) is for "having the knowledge of".

Therefore we cannot use zi1 (知) for language skills, only sik1 (識).

eg. ngo5 zi1 nei5 sik1 gong2 gwong2 dung1 waa2. "I know (the fact that) you know how to speak Cantonese."


Olivia

Team CantoneseClass101.com

surgaev
Thursday at 05:56 AM
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and can i use different question - nei5 zi1 (知) gong2 gwong2 dung1 waa2?

surgaev
Thursday at 05:45 AM
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Hello. If i want to asking can somebody speak on cantonese in guangzhou, how to do question? change

nei5 sik1 m4 sik1 gong2 gwong2 dung1 waa2?

on

nei5 sik1 m4 sik1 gong2 gwong2 zau1 waa2?

is it right or not?