Learn Mongolian: Free Language Course & Worksheets
Difference between Chi & Ta: When you want to say “You” to someone, make sure it’s appropriate. They both mean you, but Chi is used when talking to someone of your own age, Ta is used when talking to someone who’s older, has higher social status, or if you just want to be polite.
To be: To be is pretty simple. Bol (бол) just means is/are. It doesn’t matter if it’s plural or singular. It stays the same. There is no feminine or masculine in the Mongolian language so it’s pretty straightforward to add any verbs.
I am – Be bol (Би бол)
You are – Chi/ta bol (Чи/та бол)
S/He is – Ter bol (Тэр бол)
We are – Bid bol (Бид бол)
They/Them are – Ted bol (Тэд бол)
They are – Ted nar bol (Тэд нар бол)
Conjugations: Present simple is also pretty easy as it always stays the same. Doesn’t matter if it’s singular or plural. Remember there is no masculine or feminine in the Mongolian language, so Present Simple verbs are constant. Let’s take the world to go as an example. In Mongolian it’s yavah or явах.
I sing – Bi duuldag (Би дуулдаг)
You sing – Chi duuldag (Чи дуулдаг)
S/he sings – Ter duuldag (Тэр дуулдаг)
We sing – Bid duuldag (Бид дуулдаг)
They/Them sing – Ted duuldag (Тэд дуулдаг)
They sing – Ted nar duuldag (Тэд нар дуулдаг)
I go – Be yavdag (Би явдаг)
You go – Chi/ta yavdag (Чи/та явдаг)
S/He goes – Ter yavdag (Тэр явдаг)
We go – Bid yavdag (Бид явдаг)
They/Them go – Ted yavdag (Тэд явдаг)
They go – Ted nar yavdag (Тэд нар явдаг)
Difference between Chi & Ta: When you want to say “You” to someone, make sure it’s appropriate. They both mean you, but Chi is…
Let’s learn a few simple phrases that you can say in Mongolian. If you know these basic phrases, you will be able to get…
Сайн байна уу? Sain baina uu? * Mean’s hello or hi – > Response: Сайн or Сайн сайн. Sain or sain sain. Means I…
Mongolians don’t always use the Cyrillic alphabet when talking with one another online via chat or sms, sometimes a converted Latin alphabet is used…
If you could have sworn that you saw Mongolian people using the traditional script in a documentary that you watched, you are mistaking Inner…
Origins of Mongolian Language
The Mongolian language puzzles a lot of linguists because the root of the language is still unclear to this day. There are many theories, one of the popular ones being the Altaic language family theory, but it still is hotly debated and some researchers even disprove that theory.
Though we all can agree that the Mongolian language does share a lot of similarities with Central Asian and Western Asian languages, especially some of the pronunciations, vocabulary, and grammar structures, the Mongolian language is mostly regarded as a language with its own roots and uniqueness.
You may also think Mongolian may seem similar to Russian or sometimes Mandarin Chinese, but besides using the Cyrillic alphabet and some loan words that sound similar, Mongolian is completely different from both those languages.
How Many People Speak Mongolian?
People who speak Mongolian are mainly centered around Central Asia, and Northeast Asia. In total there aren’t more than 10 million people who speak Mongolian and its dialects and sub languages.
While the number of speakers are small, it’s still a growing language and will likely increase in the future. There are about 3 million ethnic Mongolians in Mongolia and 5 million or so ethnic Mongolians in Inner-Mongolia, China.
North and Northeast Asian ethnicities such as Burayt, Tuvan, Yakut, etc still speak and learn their local dialect, so Mongolian language is not a dying language.
Who Should Learn Mongolian?
The Mongolian language is not easy to learn and is uniquely different from most of the major languages, so getting the pronunciation correctly can be a major difficulty, however anyone can learn the language with practice and dedication.
If you are a language enthusiast, historian, or travelling to Mongolia in the near future, I implore you to learn the language. It not only will make it easier to communicate with the locals, but it will help you get the best out of your experience and gain a deeper understanding of the Mongolian culture.
What Makes Mongolian A Difficult Langauge?
If you are mainly familiar with Latin derived or Eastern Asian languages, then Mongolian will be completely foreign to you since you won’t have the base or the necessary foundation. Essentially you are starting from scratch and in a sense learning to walk.
What makes Mongolian for most people is the pronunciation of certain gutteral words and the harsh breathy tones. Most people are not familiar with those sounds and don’t know how to move their tongue and mouth.
The grammar and conjugation aspect of Mongolian is fairly easy since there are no masculine or feminine rules and past, present, and future tense conjugations are very straighforward.
You will most likely spend a lot of time practicing your listening skills, because certain words sound almost exactly like each and also almost written exactly like one another but mean completely different things.
Understanding some of the pronunciation subtleties is the hardest part when it comes to learning Mongolian.
What Are Some Good Resources to Learn the Language?
You can always refer to my youtube channel and my eBook for resource. Otherwise, there are a few textbooks on Amazon.
The steps for learning Mongolian are as follows:
- Learn the alphabet and the pronciations
- Understand the basic conjugation principles
- Learn to count and state numbers
- Practice basic listenting exercises
- Memorize basic verbs and nouns
- Learn intermediate past, present, future tenses
- Practice practice practice 🙂