Ama, Fakat, Lakin or Ancak?

I've been doing much research on this topic lately but no one seems to be giving an accurate answer. What is the difference between ama, fakat, lakin or ancak?

I know that they all pretty much mean "but" or "however", but when exactly should one use these words in a sentence? Is there a slight difference in their meanings? Are there instances where you can't replace one with the other?

Clarifications and examples are very much appreciated :)

May 26, 2018


I am a native speaker. I thought about your question for a few minutes. Ama, lakin and fakat are all interchangable; they all simply mean "but", and you can also use "ancak" instead of any of them.

On the other hand, ancak can be also be used to mean "only if":

ancak çalışırsan para kazanabilirsin.

(literally: "only if you work, you can make money" or "you can make money only if you work" in proper english)

in this sentence, ancak can't be replaced by ama, lakin or fakat. Well, you can replace them, but the meaning will change.

June 1, 2018

So how do you say for "if and only if" in a logical/mathematical context? Is that still "ancak"?

February 13, 2019

aha, very nice question! In mathematics/logic we use "ancak ve ancak" for "if and only if".

The first ancak stands for "if", and the second for "only if" :)

February 13, 2019

There's no difference. :) You really don't need to do research about this. They all mean the same thing and they are completely interchangable. Though of course there are instances in which some of these words will sound better or worse. But there's no formula and you'll naturally sense it as you get better with the language. So no need to worry. But let me tell you a few things about them.

Ama - You'll hear it all the time because it's the most colloquial one. I recommend using ama because it's ok in almost every situation. So it's the safest.

Fakat and ancak - They sound nicer but are less used in real life and more in writing.

Lakin - It's outdated and should be avoided. You'll likely encounter it in old texts and speeches but some people still use it.

May 26, 2018

Im not a native speaker.. but i live in turkey the past 10 years and Im trying to understand how i use the language (that is why i choose to do duolingo..)

Ama means but Fakat means however Ancak means barely Lakin i have no idea :D however i think it can be used as nevertheless

May 26, 2018

There is also Sadece for : Just

May 26, 2018

They are same i think, i am using them in same meanings.'Ama' use ı often than others.But 'Ancak' could have other meaings because it is used as a conjunction and preposition

June 5, 2018
Learn Turkish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.