ก. ไก่ – The first letter of the Thai alphabet

Sound

ก has the sound of .g. as golf, gun, guide in English when it is an initial consonant. กา crow (gaa), กิน to eat (gin), ไก่ chicken (gai). Note: The word "koh" that is the official name for island then misleads the foreign speaker to pronounce it wrong.

If it appears after a vowel ก will be softly pronounced as a stop "g" but not with a strong aspiration as in English. For example มาก – very (maa+soft g) รัก – to love (ra+soft g), ลูก child (loo+soft g).

Name

For the benefit of helping children to memorize the 44 consonants, Thai letters are made to have its own name which is referred to the object that is related to their daily life. By this, the learners will be able to recognize the name and the sound of the consonant connected to the meaning and order. Every consonant carries the "au" vowel to it and followed by the name. In this case, ก is therefore called "gau gai"

Cultural/historical view

ก has the same consonant sound in the word "gai" which means "chicken" and chicken was picked because of it is historically significant to the life of the Thais as honored to be the first consonant. The relationship between chicken and the Thai has been closely connected for a long time, especially for those community in the countryside chicken are kept in each house whether to be used for food or for pleasure, or even for sport (cock-fighting). Besides, the chicken are also a main character in much of Thai literature, as in Lilit Pra Law. Many Thai proverbs use the chicken as a symbol and to teach virtues such as the following:

ไก่ได้พลอย - A chicken gets a gem.

  • Meaning: A person who has a good thing, but he doesn't know about value.

ไก่เห็นตีนงู งูเห็นนมไก่ - A chicken sees the snake's foot and a snake sees the chicken's breast.

  • Meaning: Two parties who know each other secret.

ไก่งามเพราะขน คนงามเพราะแต่ง - Fine feathers make fine birds.

  • Meaning: Clothes make the man.

Consonant class

ก is classified as "mid consonant" because it has the inherent mid tone and consonants in this group when apply to a long vowel will produce mid tone syllable, for example กา (mid), while with short vowel it becomes low tone, for example กะ (low).

Form

ก as you see in the middle of the card is the official and typing form. However, when a Thai write ก it can be varied such as …. In addition, ก may appear differently in stylish design such as