Politeness

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Lesson Notes

Formal and informal speech

In Bulgarian, like in French or in Spanish, there are 2 levels of speech that you can use when you address someone ("you"). We'll call them formal and informal:

ти You, singular and informal (friend, family, younger person...)
вие You, plural or formal (stranger, elder person, your boss...)

In short, formal speech means that you'll talk to someone like there's several of them! (use the plural "you").

When вие is used for politeness (rather than for the informal plural), it is capitalized ("Вие").

Greetings

By politeness, can be used all day:

Здрасти! Hi! (most informal, to be used between friends and family)
Здравей! Hello! (used to greet one person, informal)
Здравейте! Hello! (when addressing multiple people, or one person politely)

By time of the day, can be used for all levels of politeness:

Добро утро! Good morning!
Добър ден! Good day! (can be used any time during daytime)
Добър вечер! Good evening!
Лека нощ! Good night! (literally "light night")

Saying goodbye:

Довиждане! Goodbye!
До скоро! See you soon! (literally, "till soon")
Лек ден! Have a good day! (literally, "light day")
Лека вечер! Have a good evening! (literally, "light evening")
Чао! Bye! (more casual)

"Чао" is not too casual. You can use it when leaving a shop.

Asking politely and saying thanks

Моля Please
Може ли ...? Can I have ...?
Благодаря Thank you
Мерси Thanks (more casual)

"Може ли ...?" (literally "could it?") is a very useful phrase to ask something politely:

"Може ли две кафета?" - Can I have two coffees, please?
"Може ли да питам ...?" - Could I ask ...?

To which the person might answer "може", for yes (literally, "it can")

"Мерси" (like in French!) is appropriate to say thanks for small things like getting your change in a shop, or saying "не, мерси" (no, thanks).

How to type Cyrillic on your keyboard?

In this exercise you will need to type sentences in Cyrillic.

If you already have a Cyrillic keyboard, that's great! Otherwise, don't worry, there's a way to type Cyrillic on your phone or your classic (say, QWERTY) keyboard.

Check out these links to find out how to install another keyboard layout (such as Bulgarian Cyrillic), on your operating system:

Exercises

Exercise 1

до, довиждане, здравей, здравейте, здрасти, скоро, чао

Start

Exercise 2

вечер, ден, добро, добър, лека, нощ, утро

Start

Exercise 3

благодаря, едно, кафе, ли, мерси, може, моля

Start
2018-11-05T14:29:59.9908889Z