Turkey Research Centre

As professional translators, we have received lots of Email from people who want to learn the Turkish language. we are always happy to offer advice to anyone who wants to learn this fascinating language.
Turkish, like Hungarian and Finnish, while spoken by Europeans, is not a European language. It has more in common with Far Eastern languages like Japanese, than with the Indo-European languages like the Latinate languages, German, Greek and Hindi.

True Turkish is based on a scheme of single syllable roots, with syllables tagged on to change the meaning and grammatical role.

For instance, "Öl" is the root for death. Ölüm is the noun for death. Ölmek is the verb to die. Öldürmek is the verb to kill, and so on.

Good books on learning Turkish are hard to find. When I look at the quality of the material for people who want to learn English, the material for learning Turkish is very poor and old fashioned. One of these days, I will write a book!

Your one consolation is this: Turkish must be one of the world's most regular languages. It has only one (very slightly) irregular verb and only one (very slightly) irregular noun. Apart from that every word obeys the rules, and every word is spoken exactly as it is written! This makes very Turkish much easier to learn than, say, English or French.

You can shop for books about learning Turkish in our Turkish bookstore

Let us know how you get on with these, or any other, books.
Want more advice? Email us and we will try to help.

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Updated 7 April 2011