Meaning: good, fine, well, nice, swell, kind
Synonym: Bagus. ‘Baik’ is used more for the character, ‘Bagus’ is the expression for the appearance. ‘Bagus’ can replace ‘baik’ but ‘baik’ can not necessarily replace ‘bagus’.
Application: baik, baik-baik, kebaikan, sebaiknya, kebaikan, perbaikan, memperbaiki, terbaik, baiklah, sebaik-baiknya, sebagus-bagusnya.

Kabar saya baik/baik-baik/bagus
Pemandangannya bagus sekali.
Wanita itu baik sekali.
Dia anak baik-baik.
Dia pemimpin yang bagus.
Dia pemimpin yang baik.
Saya selalu ingat kebaikannya.
Sebaiknya dia menelepon ibunya.
Perbaikan sistem di perusahaan kami berjalan baik.
Perbaikan jalan.
Baiklah kalau begitu.
Sebaiknya kamu berbaik-baik dengan dia.
Kita harus memanfaatkan fasilitas ini sebaik-baiknya.
Berbuatlah sebaik-baiknya.
Baik* Ana maupun Ira tinggal di Jakarta.
I am good/well/fine.
The view is really good.
That woman is very nice.
She is a good girl.
He is a good leader.
He is a nice leader.
I always remember his kindness.
He’d better call his mother.
The sistem improvement in our company went well.
Okay if that’s the case.
You’d better be on good terms with her.
We have to make the most out of this facility.
Do your best.
Both Ana and Ira live in Jakarta.*

*Correlative Structure: Emphasis can be placed on the fact that what is said to two words or phrases in coordination by placing ‘baik‘ before the first and ‘maupun‘ before the second. These are a correlative pair because ‘baik‘ anticipates the addition of what follows ‘maupun‘.


Meaning: very
Synonym: amat, sangat, sekali
Application: The common word for ‘very’ in formal Indonesian is ‘sekali’ which follows the word it refers to. The words ‘sangat’ and ‘amat’ also occur in formal Indonesian preceding the word they qualify where both can occur together for emphasis. The word ‘banget’ does not occur in formal Indonesian but is by far the most common word in colloquial Indonesian.

Orang itu bego sekali.
Orang itu sangat bego.
Orang itu amat bego.
Orang itu bego amat.
Orang itu amat sangat bego.
Orang itu bego banget.
That person is very stupid.
Saya ingin sekali bekerja di kedutaan Amerika.
Gua pengen banget kerja di kedutaan Amerika.
I really want to work in the American Embassy.
Michael Jackson banget sih! Oh, very Michael Jackson(very much like Michael Jackson)!


Meaning: many, much
Application: banyak, banyaknya, banyak-banyak, kebanyakan, sebanyak-banyaknya, memperbanyak, terbanyak.

Terimakasih banyak/Banyak-banyak terima kasih.
Dia selalu banyak akal.
Di pasar ini selalu banyak orang.
Saya banyak pikiran.
Anak itu banyak mulut.
Yang datang ke pesta itu kebanyakan orang Surabaya.
Jangan makan banyak-banyak.
Ambil saja sebanyak-banyaknya.
Dia mendapat suara terbanyak dalam pemilihan.
Thank you very much.
He is always full of ideas.
It’s always crowded in this market.
I have so many things in my mind.
That kid talks too much.
Those who came to that party mostly people from Surabaya.
Don’t eat too much.
Just take as much as you want.
He got the most votes during the election.


Meaning: correct, right, true, valid, real, actual
Synonym: betul, bener(colloquial)
Application: benar, sebenarnya, kebenaran, pembenaran, betul, kebetulan, pembetulan, sebetulnya

Jawaban kamu benar(betul).
Saya betul-betul(benar-benar) tidak tahu.
Sebenarnya .. (Sebetulnya..)
Kebetulan ….
Kebenaran cerita kamu …
Your answer is right(correct)
I really don’t know
Actually …
Coincidently ..
The truth(validity) of your story …
justification, confirmation
correction, amendment

Biar* and Supaya

Meaning: Benar has a number of related meaning in both formal and colloquial Indonesian. It can mean 1) let, allow; 2) although, even though; 3) so that, in order that
Synonym: supaya
Application: In formal Indonesian ‘biar’ does not occur with the meaning ‘so that, in order that’. ‘Supaya’ is the most frequent word used. Another word for this meaning is ‘agar’ but rarely used.

Jangan ikut campur, biar aja mereka urus sendiri.
Aku, biar anak bungsu, nggak manja.
Dia rajin belajar biar lulus ujian.
Don’t get involved, let them take care of it themselves.
Although I’m the youngest child, I’m not spoiled.
He studied hard so that he can pass the exam.


Meaning: to say
Synonym: katakan, kata
Application: It is strongly associated with informal speech and rarely occur in formal Indonesian. ‘Dibilang‘ is the passive form. It can also occur with suffix -in: ‘dibilangin‘, ‘bilangin‘, or reduplication ‘bilang-bilang‘.
‘Katakan’ is the formal Indonesian. Other high variants include: berkata(to say), kata(said), katanya(they/he/she/it said), katakanlah(please say it).

Dia bilang apa?
Dia berkata apa?
Apa katanya?
Gue dibilang kurang ajar sama ibunya.
Kata ibunya saya kurang ajar.
Katanya saya kurang ajar.
Udah berapa kali dibilangin?
Sudah berapa kali dikatakan?
Bilangin temen lu besok ada ujian.
Katakan pada temanmu besok ada ujian.
Jangan bilang-bilang!
What did he say?
What did he say?
What did he say?
It’s been said by her mother that I was discourteous.
It’s been said by her mother that I was discourteous.
It’s been said that I was discourteous.
How many times has it been said?
How many times has it been said?
Tell your friend there will be an exam tomorrow.
Tell your friend there will be an exam tomorrow.
Don’t say anything!(It’s a secret)


Meaning: 1) able, can; 2) venom
Synonym: 1)dapat, mampu ; 2) racun
Application: 1) bisa; 2) bisa, berbisa

Apakah kamu bisa pergi ke toko?
Saya tidak bisa pergi.
Ular itu sangat berbisa.
Bisa ular sangat berbahaya
Can you go to the shop?
I can not go.
That snake is very venomous.
Snake’s venom is very dangerous.


Meaning: father
Synonym: ayah, bapak, papa, papi.
Application: The word ‘bokap’ is used to refer to one’s own or someone else’s father. They are from Prokem, the argot common among Jakarta’s youth. The term for mother is ‘nyokap’. These words are highly informal and the most popular Prokem words. However they are not used in formal Indonesian. They can occur in combination as nyokap-bokap or bokap-nyokap for parents.


Meaning: 1) make; 2) for what concerned, for
Synonym: 1) bikin; 2) untuk
Application: buat, buatan, buatkan(buatin – colloquial), perbuatan, pembuatan, dibuat-buat

Buat siapa?/Untuk siapa?
Buat apa?/Untuk apa?
Buatan Amerika
Buatan mana?/Bikinan mana?
Tolong buatkan saya secangkir kopi.
For whom?
What for?
Doesn’t act normal
Made in USA
Where is it made?
Who made (this/that)?
construction, production,execution
doing, deed, act

*) Reference: Colloquial Jakartan Indonesian by James Neil Sneddon, 2006

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