Letter Elimination

‘H’ in the beginning of the word

In daily conversation some words are nasalised by not pronouncing or eliminating a letter such as words with letter ‘h’, ‘s’ or ‘m’.

Word After Elimination Meaning Word After Elimination Meaning
habis abis finish hangat anget warm
hati ati heart, feeling hancur ancur crushed, shattered
hafal afal recite hampir ampir almost
halus alus soft, smooth handuk anduk towel
hidup idup alive, life hilang ilang lost, dissapear
hisap isap/isep to suck hitung itung count, calculate
hitam item black hutang utang loan, debt, owe
hujan ujan rain hijau* ijo green

*) In this case, the word ‘hijau’ also change its diphthong ‘au’ into ‘o’. See Diphthong chapter for more information.

‘H’ in the middle of the word

Word After Elimination Meaning Word After Elimination Meaning
bohong bo’ong to lie, a lie jahil jail to bug, to tease, naughty
jahit jait to sew jodoh jodo soul mate, partner
lihat liat look pahit pait bitter
sahut saut answer, reply tahu tau know, aware
tahi tai excrement, feces tahun taun year

‘M’ in the beginning of the word

Word After Elimination Meaning
memang emang indeed

‘S’ in the beginning of the word

Word After Elimination Meaning
sudah udah done, finish
sama ama with
saja aja only, just
sampai ampe* until, up to, to (that) extent

*) In this case, the word ‘sampai’ also change its diphthong ‘ai’ into ‘é’. See Diphthong chapter for more information.

For more information or articles about colloquial, colloquial Indonesian, colloquial Jakartan Indonesian by Dr. Timothy Hassall from ANU, Canberra, Australia, click here.

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