Chadic language spoken by the Hausa people
Phrasebooks > Hausa phrasebook

Hausa (Yaren Hausa or Harshen Hausa) is the Chadic language with the largest number of speakers, spoken as a first language by about 80 million people, and as a second language by about 20 million more. Native speakers of Hausa are mostly to be found in northern Nigeria and in Niger (where it is an official language in the north), but the language is widely used as a lingua franca (similar to Wolof in Senegal) in a much larger swathe of West Africa. It is especially prevalent in the Northern Region of Ghana, commonly used by the Fulani herdsmen who originate from Nigeria.

Pronunciation guideEdit


like 'a' in "cat"


like 'b' in "bat" but there is also an implosive b, a sound not in English

Phrase listEdit


Sannu, but the commonest polite greeting is Assalamu alaikum, Peace be upon you. Assalamu alaikum is a Muslim greeting, more commonly used by both men and women.
A gaishe ka (ki) or Ina gaishe ka (ki) Hello, or I greet you. Used as a more formal salutation, or if you find someone at hard at work.
How are you?
ا نا لافييا /Kana Lafiya (addressing males) or Kina lafiya (addressing females)?
Lafiya lau. (in health)
What is your name?
yaya sunan ka?
My name is ______ .
suna na _____.
You may do best to simply respond to friendly greetings as they come at you. Lafiya or lafiya lau is nearly always a polite response.
Sannu da aiki (said to someone at work)
sannu kadai (hello back)
Sannu da zuwa (welcome, greetings on your arrival)
sannu kadai (hello back)
ina gajiya (how is the tiredness)
ba gajiya (fine, no tiredness)
ina dan uwa'en ka (ki) (how are your relatives, your family)
lafiya lau
Ina kwana (good morning, literally how did you sleep)
I do not speak Hausa (literally I do not hear Hausa)
Ba na jin Hausa
I do not understand
Ban gane ba

Nice to meet you.
Ina farin cikin haduwa da kai (an English greeting, not a Hausa one)
Don Allah
Thank you.
Na gode.
You're welcome.
barka da zuwa or sannu da zuwa (in the sense of welcoming someone)
Ba kome (in response to someone thanking you)
A (sounded as letter 'a' but drawn out like 'ayyy' not 'ahhh')
A'a (sounded as 'ah ah')
Please listen to me
(getting attention) : Don Allah ji mana
Excuse me please
(begging pardon) : Gafara Don Allah
I'm sorry.
Yi hak'uri
Sai an jima.
See you tomorrow
Sai Gobe
I can't speak 'Swedish' [well].
Ba na jin harshen Swedish
Do you speak English?
Ka na jin harshen turanci kuwa?
Is there someone here who speaks English?
Akwai mai jin harshen turanci kusa?
Look out!
A lura sosai!
Good morning.
Ina kwana?
Good evening.
Barka da yamma
Good night.
Allah ya ba mu alheri
Good night (to sleep)
Mu kwana lafiya
I don't understand.
Ban gane ba
Where is the toilet?
Ina makewayi ya ke?

In Daily LifeEdit

Let's go
Mu je
Let's go to the market
Mu tafi kasuwa
Let's go home
Mu tahi gida
Where are you going?
Ina za ka je? (Masculine), Ina za ki je(Feminine)
Small boy
mai noma
Where do you come from?
Daga ina ka zo? or ina ka zo daga?
What country do you come from?
Wani gari kafai to?
zo or Zo nan (come here)
Where did you going?
ina ka na je
Do you understand (Hausa)
Kana jin harshen Hausa
Small Small
Ka'dan ka'dan
Is it good?* or It is good
yena da kyau? or tai kyau?
What is this?
Menene wan nan?
What are you doing?
Menene Ka na yi?
Okay, yes, you're welcome*
Too, Yoo *common in Ghana to use when speaking Hausa
I like you
Ina so'n ka (mas.) ina so'n ki (fem.)

In the MarketEdit

Good Market With you
Allah abiba kasuwa
How much?
Can I buy some?
zan siya abu
Can I have some?
Nasu mu
Densay (Madera)?
Can I buy (Milk)
Last price?
Nawane gaskiya
Give me clean water to drink
Bani ruwa in sha
Drinkable water
Ruwan Shah
Food is delicious (Literally Food gets delicious)
Abinchin ku yana dadi
traditional meal


  • Sannu: Hello
  • Na gode: Thank You
  • Ina jin yunwa: I'm Hungry
  • Ina son ruwa: I want water
  • Ko ba ha'ka ba? Is that not so?
  • Gaskiya? True?
  • Sai wata rana. Until another day (Goodbye)
  • Akwai labari? Is there any news?
  • Na ji dadi. I am pleased
  • Madallah! Excellent! (often used at the end of the greetings if all is well)
  • Na gaji. I am tired.

I na zaka(ki) je? Where do you want to go?

Bin iya yi ba. I don't know how to do it.

Zan tafi. I'm leaving.

Na gane. I understand.

A kwai abinchi? Is there food?

Na koshi. I'm full (after eating).

Me ka(kin) ce? What did you say?

Bari. Leave it.

Zauna. Sit down.

Ta fita. She has gone out.

Ya je aiki? He has gone to work?

Ka iya yi? Do you know how to do it?

Ina son mota dan Allah. I would like a car please.

Ina zan tsaya? Where would I stay?

Kana da Kudi? Do you have money?

Bani de kudi. I don't have money.

Ba na so. I don't like it.

Ina so. I like it.

Shanu Cattle

Zomo Hare

Rakumi Camel

Rakumin dadje Giraffe

Doki Horse

Dan doka Police

Kanna sha taba? Do you smoke? (lit; Do you drink cigarettes)

Kana/Kina shan giya? Do you(masculine/feminine) drink alcohol?

Sarki King

Aboki Friend

Zaki Lion

Giwa Elephant

Giwan Ruwa Nile perch (Lit: Elephant of the waters)

Bai kome It doesn't matter

Wasa Playing

Kadaka zo gobe Don't come tomorrow

Matar ka ta gudu. Your wife has run away.

Wuta fire/electricity What is your nationality? Kai ɗan wace ƙasa ne?

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