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Pocket Burmese Dictionary: Burmese-English English-Burmese (Periplus Pocket Dictionaries) Paperback – December 15, 2008
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Nyi Nyi Lwin, a native of Mandalay, Burma, is an experienced editor and layout designer.
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Top Customer Reviews
But this dictionary is exactly what I've been looking for! As a low-intermediate speaker of Burmese, I took this dictionary along on a recent trip to Myanmar and found it quite useful for day-to-day conversations. I was able to look up many words quickly and likewise when conversations came to a halt, some of my Burmese friends were able to find the word they were looking for and show it to me so I could understand.
Is this dictionary perfect? No. Could it include some more words? Yes. But I loved it and found it quite helpful. And since the product only advertises itself as a pocket dictionary and not more, I give it five stars.
One thing I found unnecessary was the first half of the book; the Burmese-English section that lists transliterated versions of the words in alphabetical order by the "sound" of the word. Maybe some learners like having this to use as an option, but I rarely look at that part of the book. Really, it's just a waste of space that they could have used to list more words. And some of the definitions in the English-Burmese section are defintely open to debate, such as telling you that "saga mya-de" is the phrase for "argue " Every Burmese that I show that to tells me that's not correct. But at least this book gives you proper tone markers (essential for correct pronunciation) and the transliteration system is the same as that one that most other Burmese courses use. All in all this is a very useful dictionary for beginners and the slim/thin size makes it easy to carry with you. Truly, a "pocket" dictionary. If you are looking for bigger, more complete Burmese dictionary, there is a much more comprehensive one (and much thicker) from Paiboon Publications.
I've found that every single word in it I've come across on a daily basis. They reckon languages have 100,000 words in them (who knows, that's just what I heard) but some words (about 1000-3000) recur a lot and make up most of what we say. They're the ones you've got to learn to be able to talk to people. It's good to know that too, it means you can spend your time learning useful words that'll occur and reoccur. This dictionary has heaps of foundational words from daily experience like eating, time, jobs etc.
The best way to use this dictionary is to just learn all the words in it because they're all really common. There's only 3000 so it's not an impossible task. Get a bigger dictionary for use at home, but make sure you think about the transliteration systems of rendering Burmese into English. This one uses the same system as the Lonely Planet phrasebook and John Okell's textbook series (get them, they're good). Also, make sure you get a dictionary like this one that you can look up the Burmese words in Roman letters (not just Burmese letters).
On the other hand, it is extremely limited. On page iv of the introduction it says that it contains 3,000 of the most frequently countered Burmese words. 3,000 is hardly anything and much less than is normally used in daily speech.
Whenever I've tried to use this dictionary, I've often run into problems. i.e. the other day when trying to teach a refugee how to drive the roadbook stated "Research shows that awareness is the key to reducing risk of collisions."
"Research," "awareness," "risk" and "collision" are all words that are not in this dictionary.
There are some words in this dictionary that are not in the Lonely Planet Phrasebook, but not terribly many. I still carry it around when I visit refugees but I don't really expect much from it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Decent pocket dictionary very much aimed at beginners making their first steps into the language. I suspect that most people who are seriously learning Burmese will need to upgrade... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Jonathan
I had a Burmese friend at work who speaks no english and I needed to find a way to communicate with him. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Ron Penn
I really needed one with certain words and was glad it had them in this one, since other one I got had more of only tourist phrases.Published 22 months ago by jacki
This small book is very affordable and very useful for the Burmese Chin to learn English. Everyone in class can have one.Published on September 21, 2013 by no more bugs