Dear All Singapore Stuff,

Singlish is a unique language, Singaporeans speak it, love it and sometimes hate it. But did you know Singlish is one of the most efficient language in the world? Singlish is able to transmit a message or feeling with one of the least number of words used. It is simply incredible lah.

To understand the crux of what Singlish is about, check out Gwee Li Sui's simple but powerful illustration of how Singlish is constructed.

He said

Singlish has something like adjectives but it modifies the entire sentence. It is gives the emotional tenor of what is being said. If you get it right, you got 50% for Singlish.

There are at least 9 of them. They are:

lah = i dun have lah: i really don't have it

leh = i dun have leh: for some reason, i don't have it

lor = i dun have lor: i wish i had it, but sadly i don't

liao = i dun have liaoi used to have it but don't have it anymore 

ha =  i dun have ha: i remind you – i don't have it!

hor =  i dun have hor: don't look at me, i don't have it. 

meh =  i dun have meh?: You think i don't have it?

mah =   i dun have mah: It would help if i had it, but i don't. 

siah  =  i dun have siah: i can't freaking believe i don't have it!


Do you know of any other Singlish adjectives that Singaporeans use to thoroughly express our complex emotions? 🙂 


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