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Thread: Falang or Farang?

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    Falang or Farang?

    Another post sparked this thread.

    So what do most here think the correct way to pronounce the word for westerner in Thai is? is it farang or falang?

    Going by the Royal Thai system (that's often flawed) its farang.

    So why do so many people who have been to Thailand numerous times say falang?

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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน supersub's Avatar
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    Probably because most Thais can't pronounce their r's and replace them with an l. ฝรั่ง - fa rang.

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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน supersub's Avatar
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    ...and expats probably just copy along with how they hear the locals talk.
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    Quote Originally Posted by supersub View Post
    ...and expats probably just copy along with how they hear the locals talk.
    I agree, but it's interesting that the word ฝรั่ง is pronounced with an r in Thai when so many Thai's can't pronounce that letter.

    Would be interesting to know where the word came from as its very close sounding to the Khmer word barang which means the same thing.

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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน RakThai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phaisan View Post
    I agree, but it's interesting that the word ฝรั่ง is pronounced with an r in Thai when so many Thai's can't pronounce that letter.

    Would be interesting to know where the word came from as its very close sounding to the Khmer word barang which means the same thing.
    From Wiki:
    The word farang may have either originated from the Hindi word firangi (Devanāgarī: फिरंगी, "foreign"), a derogatory term for Europeans that was coined during British colonial rule in India, or from the Persian word farang (فرنگ) or farangī (فرنگی), meaning "Frank, European". This in turn comes from the Old French word franc, meaning "Frank", a West Germanic tribe that became a major political power in Western and Central Europe during the early Middle Ages, and from which France derives its name. Because the Frankish Empire ruled a large part of Europe (France, Germany, Switzerland, Italy and Low Countries) for centuries, all Europeans and even Middle Easterners associated the word "Frank" with Latins who professed the Roman Catholic faith. Frangistan (Persian: فرنگستان‎) was a term used by Muslims and Persians in particular, during the Middle Ages and later periods, to refer to Western or Latin Europe.

    According to Rashid al-din Fazl Allh, farang comes from the Arabic word afranj.[5] In Ethiopia faranj means white/European people. In either case, the original word was pronounced paranki (പറങ്കി) in Malayalam, parangiar in Tamil, entered Khmer as barang, and Malay as ferenggi. From there the term spread into China as folangji (佛郎機), which was used to refer to the Portuguese and their breech-loading swivel guns when they first arrived in China.
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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน supersub's Avatar
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    Whilst learning Thai, the way I've interpreted this is that unless you are a TV personality or are an academic then you don't need to bother with pronounce your r's. Like a lot of things with the Thai alphabet it's a bit bizarre.

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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Stillearly's Avatar
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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Moo Uaon's Avatar
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    Farang is also the Thai word for the guava fruit, introduced by Portuguese traders over 400 years ago, which of course can lead to jokes when western foreigners are seen eating a guava in Thailand. Farang khi nok (Thai: ฝรั่งขี้นก) is a particular variety of guava, feijoa. Scruffy Westerners, especially backpackers, may also be called farang khi nok. This means "bird-droppings farang", as khi means waste and nok means (wild) bird; but, while khi nok may mean guano, it is also a species of fish, Diagramma pictum, a species of grunts Haemulidae.[6]

    farang and kee nok sounds credible.

    i heard that it was a term for low lying fruit that is easily picked.
    Last edited by Moo Uaon; 26th January 2018 at 18:48.
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    Lamai Beach Bum Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน bacwaan's Avatar
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    "Man Farang" is potato...I guess they think we are all potato eaters...555

    "Farang Set" is French...why is it that only the French farangs get to come..555

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    Quote Originally Posted by bacwaan View Post
    "Farang Set" is French...why is it that only the French farangs get to come..555
    Calling them "set (เศษ) farang" pisses them off more though (farang remnants)
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    Organic AI Quarky's Avatar
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    Isn't there a country nearby that turns "Ls" into "Rs"? Wercome to Thairand?
    My only experience was in a pie making factory managing the gravy team


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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน MarcTwoSix's Avatar
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    Those R's can be tricky for a lot of people in different places 555

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    Organic AI Quarky's Avatar
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    If you have a risp it's tough....
    My only experience was in a pie making factory managing the gravy team


  14. #14
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน MarcTwoSix's Avatar
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    Honestly.....who the hell needs R's

    The greatest city in the world doesn't even use them 555

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    Quote Originally Posted by RakThai View Post
    From Wiki:
    I am unconvinced by this wiki link as the references are dubious and there is no link as to how it became to be used in Thailand

    At least the Khmer version Barang is well explained .

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    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Zablive's Avatar
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    Falang is pidgin Thai/English.

    Farang is correct, if you are an English speaker.

    Isn't Barang also used in the Philippines?
    How does that fit the Khmer narrative?
    Last edited by Zablive; 27th January 2018 at 16:13.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bacwaan View Post
    "Man Farang" is potato...I guess they think we are all potato eaters...555
    Potato is a derogatory word for white westerns in many South east asian communities.

    Due to link with westerners (especially expats) who are seen as white, fat and inert, much like a potato.

    Its gets better (Potato = Westerner)

    Potato Salad = A large gathering of westerners, usually around hotel swimming pools.

    Mashed Potato = A motorbike accident involving at least one westerner, Often includes a muffler burn.

    Baked Potato = A sunburnt westerner

    Potato Famine = A westerner who orders a meal at a local restaurant. On arrival he realises it is completely inedible.

    Bubble and Squeak = An older westerner who has hooked up with a younger, beautiful local girl.

    So the next time you hear SEA talking about potatoes, pay attention 555
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zablive View Post
    Falang is pidgin Thai/English.

    Farang is correct, if you are an English speaker.
    I don't disagree, especially when westerners say it. I find it rubs me the wrong way when they do, its cringe worthy.

  19. #19
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน MarcTwoSix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phaisan View Post
    I don't disagree, especially when westerners say it. I find it rubs me the wrong way when they do, its cringe worthy.
    A westerners has never heard of the word before......he goes to Thailand and hears people calling him "falang"
    Why would he be wrong to then use it that way? Since his initiation to the word is "falang"

    If the proper word is farang, which many on here don't even seem to know for absolute sure.....but the locals use falang

    I figure you can use both

    To compare
    Many Thais insert an N when a word has an L sound near the end
    Like Hospital=Hospitan
    Like Bottle=Botten

    Those are known words in our vocabulary so we know the correct pronunciation

    But farang is not in our vocabulary so I don't see anything cringeworthy about someone using the same pronunciation as locals

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    Lamai Beach Bum Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน bacwaan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phaisan View Post
    Potato is a derogatory word for white westerns in many South east asian communities.

    Due to link with westerners (especially expats) who are seen as white, fat and inert, much like a potato.

    Its gets better (Potato = Westerner)

    Potato Salad = A large gathering of westerners, usually around hotel swimming pools.

    Mashed Potato = A motorbike accident involving at least one westerner, Often includes a muffler burn.

    Baked Potato = A sunburnt westerner

    Potato Famine = A westerner who orders a meal at a local restaurant. On arrival he realises it is completely inedible.

    Bubble and Squeak = An older westerner who has hooked up with a younger, beautiful local girl.

    So the next time you hear SEA talking about potatoes, pay attention 555
    555...some good ones in there....

    My former wife is eurasian...half HK Chinese/half Euro Kiwi...she can speak reasonable Mandarin and pretty good Cantonese but the HK Chinese (even her cousins, uncles and aunts) would often call her "Banana" to her face...yellow on the outside/white on the inside, when we visited HK...funny as it made her blush and go bright red...555

    They just called me "Gwailo"...white ghost...hell I didn't care...quite often I'd get in early and call myself Gwailo or Ghost to break the ice...everyone had a good old laugh...especialy Grannie

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