E S P E R A N T O   C O U R S E

                                Lesson Four

Now let's look at statements, questions, and answers:

A statement:   La pano estas bruna.
               The bread is brown.

A question:    Ĉu la pano estas bruna?
               Is the bread brown?

The answer:    (a)  Jes, la pano estas bruna.
               (b)  Ne, la pano ne estas bruna, ĝi estas blanka.

Note:  Every question is based on a statement; we identify that statement,
placing the 'doubting' word ĉu (literally, 'whether') in front, and then
we are asking "Is this true?"  Also note that the word order in Esperanto
is not changed; only the word 'ĉu' is placed in front of the statement.

English question:        Will the boys sell the cake?

Underlying statement:    (The boys will sell the cake.)
                         (La knaboj vendos la kukon.)

Esperanto question:      Ĉu la knaboj vendos la kukon?

All 'yes-or-no' questions are handled in the same way.

__________________________ extract from here ____________________________

                         Ekzercoj, Leciono Kvar (parto unu)

Change the following statements into questions:

Mia filo forgesis la teon.    ->

Lia patro faras panon.        ->

La tago estas griza.          ->

__________________________ extract to here ____________________________

In the first three lessons, you have learned how to write simple statements
correctly, and now know how to make questions and give answers.  As soon as
you have learned all the sounds of Esperanto (detailed, as best as possible
in writing, see below) we can start in on conversations, in Lesson Five.
(Remember to complete the exercises at the bottom.)

The Esperanto alphabet:

a b c ĉ d e f g ĝ h ĥ i j ĵ k l m n o p r s ŝ t u ŭ v z

Note that the names of the letters (used when spelling aloud, etc.)
are a, bo, co, ĉo, do, e, fo, go, ĝo, ho, ĥo, i, etc.  That is, the
consonants get an 'o' after them, and the name of each vowel is the
sound of the vowel itself.  Note that "ŭo" is pronounced sort of like
English 'wo'.

There are 26 letters in the English alphabet; 28 in Esperanto.  In
Esperanto there is no q, w, x, or y.  In Esperanto there are 6 letters not
found in English (all 6 have accent marks):  ĉ, ĝ, ĥ, ĵ, ŝ [all
circumflexes], and ŭ [a u-breve].

The Esperanto letters 'j' and 'ŭ' are not vowels and can combine with real
vowels (a, e, i, o, and u) to make 'vowel glides' which must be learned as
separate sounds (below).

Pronunciation Guide

Remember, in Esperanto:  one letter - one sound.  No exceptions.

Vowel Sounds (accented/emphasized vowels are capitalized)

a as in Ma, father:      blANka    sAna      grAnda    vArma
e as in send, met:       bEla      plEna     vErda     pEti
i as in me, three:       vIvi      Ami       trInki    fIlo
o as in more, or:        Ovo       dOmo      kIo       nOva
u as in two, soon:       Unu       plUmo     sUno      butIko

Consonant Sounds (mainly as in English, except:)

c pronounced 'ts' in nests:    dAnco        leciOno      bicIklo
ĉ pronounced 'ch'in church:   ĉAmbro      sandvIĉo    ĉokolAdo
g pronounced 'g'  in great:    sagEto       gustUmi      geografIo
ĝ pronounced 'g' in George:   mAnĝi       lOĝi        sEĝo
ĥ pronounced 'ch'in Bach:     jAĥto       ĥOro        Eĥo
j pronounced 'y'  in yet:      jEs          jAro         jUna
ĵ pronounced 's' in leisure:  ĵurnAlo     teatrAĵo    ĵalUzo
ŝ pronounced 'sh'in shoe:     ŝAti        pOŝo        ŝUo

ŭ is used most often in the combination 'aŭ' or 'eŭ' (otherwise it has a
'w' sound, as in weather).

Remember:  All sounds presented in this Pronunciation Guide are
approximations.  They are the closest approximations for North American

Vowel Glides (diphthongs).  The following combinations between a vowel (a,
e, o, u) and 'j' or 'ŭ' make one sound:

aj pronounced as 'eye':            mAjo      kAj       semAjno
oj pronounced as in 'boy':         knAboj    vojAĝi   ĝOjo
ej pronounced as in 'they':        plEj      mEjlo     lernEjo
uj pronounced 'oo-ee' (quickly)    tUj       AnglUjo   monUjo
aŭ pronounced as in 'cow':        nAŬ      Antaŭ    ĵAŬdo
eŭ pronounced as in 'wayward':    EŭrOpo   neŭtrAla EŭklIdo

In all the examples above, the vowel of the stressed (or accented) syllable
has been capitalized.  This follows the rule without exception that every
word in Esperanto is stressed on the next-to-last syllable.

Here is a list of words (and translations) that represent sounds in
Esperanto [not just those covered above].  Practice them carefully and your
pronunciation will get better and better.

Anglujo        England                  lernejo        school
antaŭ         before                   majo           May
aĉeti         to buy                   manĝi         to eat
biciklo        bicycle                  mejlo          mile
ĉambro        room                     monujo         purse
ĉokolado      chocolate                neŭtrala      neutral
danco          dance                    ovo            egg
domo           house                    plej           most...
eĥo           echo                     plena          full
Eŭropo        Europe                   poŝo          pocket
Eŭklido       Euclid                   sageto         dart
geografio      geography                sandviĉo      sandwich
gustumi        to taste                 seĝo          seat, chair
ĝojo          joy                      suno           sun
ĥoro          choir                    ŝati          to like
jaĉto         yacht                    ŝuo           shoe
juna           young                    teatraĵo      (theatrical) play
ĵaluzo        jealousy                 tuj            immediately
ĵaŭdo        Thursday                 vojaĝi        to travel
ĵurnalo       newspaper
kio            what (thing)
leciono        lesson                   best advice:  practice! practice!
libro          book                     practice!
loĝi          to reside

__________________________ extract from here ____________________________

                         Ekzercoj, Leciono Kvar (parto du)

(translate, but don't answer!)

1.   Is father making a cake?

2.   Did the son forget the milk?

3.   Will father sell the cakes?

4.   Does a healthy boy drink warm milk?

5.   Will the daughter eat a sandwich?

6.   Did the new teacher forget your sugar?

7.   Do they sell tea and coffee?

8.   Did the sick girl write badly?

9.   Is he healthy?

10.  Are seven days one week?

Answer in Esperanto; use complete sentences, not just jes or ne.

11.  Is milk white?

12.  Is water dry?

13.  Is the sun warm?

14.  Is your mother a man?

15.  Are you wearing an empty shoe?

16.  Do two and two make four?  [Use "estas"]

17.  Do you eat water?

18.  Is coffee blue?

19.  Are seven days one week?

20.  Do you drink cakes?

(Sorry about the silly questions, but the answers are easy.)

On to Lesson 5!

Or go back to the index for other lessons.