Talk in a language you don't know

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Re: Talk in a language you don't know

Postby Tikolm » Tue 11 Sep 2012 1:30 am

Just ran "mae e yna" through GT to see what it would come out with, and it gave me "he then". :? That can't possibly be the intended meaning. I know GT often messes up Welsh <> English, but this isn't entirely its fault. If I'm not mistaken, GT is convinced that yna means something, but I can't guess exactly what -- "then", maybe? U of Wales couldn't find any matches, which is puzzling if it's a real word and not just a typo.
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Re: Talk in a language you don't know

Postby Tikolm » Tue 11 Sep 2012 1:37 am

linguoboy wrote:The preposition isn't erbyn, it's yn erbyn. Searching the complete phrase gives you the correct translation, "against".

Note that the default for searching the UWTSD dictionary is "Term entered is: The whole word." This will only find exact matches. It won't find phrases containing the particular word. For that you need to change the selection to: "Term entered is: Part of a word or phrase." If you search for an exact match on the word paid, you will only find the translation "don't". However, if you search for phrases containing paid, you will get examples such as:

paid â bod yn ddig wrthyn nhw don't be angry with them cmb.
paid â brysio take your time cmb.
paid â busnesa! mind your own business cmb.
paid â chrio, cariad don't cry, dear cmb.
paid â chynhyrfu! don't get excited! cmb.
etc.

What this shows you is that the â is part of the negative imperative construction when a verb-noun follows. (If it helps, think of paid â as meaning "cease with", so paid â brysio is "cease with hurrying", paid â fy nwrdio fi! is "cease with my scolding", and so forth.)
Oh, wow! I don't know how I missed the existence of this post. :roll: Thanks for explaining all that. Things make more sense now.
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Re: Talk in a language you don't know

Postby linguoboy » Tue 11 Sep 2012 4:09 pm

Tikolm wrote:Just ran "mae e yna" through GT to see what it would come out with, and it gave me "he then". :? That can't possibly be the intended meaning. I know GT often messes up Welsh <> English, but this isn't entirely its fault. If I'm not mistaken, GT is convinced that yna means something, but I can't guess exactly what -- "then", maybe? U of Wales couldn't find any matches, which is puzzling if it's a real word and not just a typo.

That is puzzling. Trust me, yna is a real word--you'll find it in any contemporary grammar of Welsh. For instance, the Catchphrase series I pointed you towards. But the UWTSD dictionary has only yno, a literary variant.

Maybe part of the reason why GT is stumbling over "Mae e yna" (besides the fact that it simply sucks at Welsh in general) is that this isn't the most common way to express this. I was trying not to confuse you with too much new material, but a more idiomatic expression for "There he is" is "Dyna fe". (This also translates "That's him". Think of dyna as the Welsh version of voilà.)

It's really a damn shame Mark Nodine's Welsh-English lexicon is defunct now. It was by far the most learner-friendly Welsh dictionary on the web. Not only did it include explanations of individual words, but it even indexed entries by their mutated forms. (For instance, searching fyddar would bring you to the entry for byddar.)
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Re: Talk in a language you don't know

Postby Tikolm » Tue 11 Sep 2012 8:43 pm

linguoboy wrote:That is puzzling. Trust me, yna is a real word--you'll find it in any contemporary grammar of Welsh. For instance, the Catchphrase series I pointed you towards. But the UWTSD dictionary has only yno, a literary variant.

I see. I'm glad it's a real word, then. (By the way, I have plans to check out the Catchphrase series thingy. I really mean to do it, maybe not as soon as you'd like, but it's something.)
Maybe part of the reason why GT is stumbling over "Mae e yna" (besides the fact that it simply sucks at Welsh in general) is that this isn't the most common way to express this. I was trying not to confuse you with too much new material, but a more idiomatic expression for "There he is" is "Dyna fe". (This also translates "That's him". Think of dyna as the Welsh version of voilà.)

So yna is "that"? Or is that an oversimplification? In any case, I can see now that you meant "that's him, under the table".
It's really a damn shame Mark Nodine's Welsh-English lexicon is defunct now. It was by far the most learner-friendly Welsh dictionary on the web. Not only did it include explanations of individual words, but it even indexed entries by their mutated forms. (For instance, searching fyddar would bring you to the entry for byddar.)

It would indeed be nice to be able to look up a mutated form and just find the word. It would have saved me some trouble.

(Just as a side note, it's interesting how many things "PC" could stand for: "personal computer", "politically correct", "President's Choice" [a brand of food for those of you who don't know], "piece", "Prifysgol Cymru", "pretty clear" and "poorly communicated". There may be more if you look around.)
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Re: Talk in a language you don't know

Postby linguoboy » Tue 11 Sep 2012 9:44 pm

Tikolm wrote:So yna is "that"? Or is that an oversimplification?

That's an oversimplification. With few exceptions (none of which are to be found among function words!) Welsh words and English meanings don't line up one-to-one. Yna only really means "that" when it's combined with something, like the yr in yr ci 'na. (Cf. Eng. that there dog.)

Tikolm wrote:It would indeed be nice to be able to look up a mutated form and just find the word. It would have saved me some trouble.

You should've started learning Welsh earlier!
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Re: Talk in a language you don't know

Postby Tikolm » Tue 11 Sep 2012 10:06 pm

linguoboy wrote:That's an oversimplification.
Figures.
With few exceptions (none of which are to be found among function words!) Welsh words and English meanings don't line up one-to-one.
Yes, I'm starting to get that feeling.
Yna only really means "that" when it's combined with something, like the yr in yr ci 'na. (Cf. Eng. that there dog.)
I thought that construction translated literally to "the dog there", but I'm sure you don't share my opinion. Also cf. Brithenig ill cen llâ (I think I got that right), which does in fact literally mean "the dog there" but would be rendered in English as "that (there) dog". (Say, why should it be yr here? Ci begins with a consonant, not a vowel. :?)

You should've started learning Welsh earlier!

What's that got to do with anything? I know that anyway. As you know, there's only so much time in one's life, and it's at least something that I'm learning Welsh now when I'm still young instead of when I get to middle age and can't easily pick up a new language. I assume you mean that if I'd started learning Welsh earlier (which is a pretty vague time period in any case) I would have saved myself the trouble of digging up unknown words because I'd have known them already. That's true enough, but I'm not sure what your point was exactly.
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Re: Talk in a language you don't know

Postby linguoboy » Tue 11 Sep 2012 10:52 pm

Tikolm wrote:(Say, why should it be yr here? Ci begins with a consonant, not a vowel. :?)

You're right, it should be y ci 'na. (I'm alternating between tutoring you in Welsh and Ciarán in Irish and the strain is starting to show.)

Tikolm wrote:
You should've started learning Welsh earlier!

What's that got to do with anything? I know that anyway. As you know, there's only so much time in one's life, and it's at least something that I'm learning Welsh now when I'm still young instead of when I get to middle age and can't easily pick up a new language. I assume you mean that if I'd started learning Welsh earlier (which is a pretty vague time period in any case) I would have saved myself the trouble of digging up unknown words because I'd have known them already. That's true enough, but I'm not sure what your point was exactly.

Um...that was a joke based on the fact that Nodine's dictionary was taken offline only recently.
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Re: Talk in a language you don't know

Postby Tikolm » Wed 12 Sep 2012 1:57 am

linguoboy wrote:You're right, it should be y ci 'na. (I'm alternating between tutoring you in Welsh and Ciarán in Irish and the strain is starting to show.)

I didn't know you were tutoring Ciarán in Irish. I did know you sometimes got Welsh and Irish mixed up, though.
Um...that was a joke based on the fact that Nodine's dictionary was taken offline only recently.

Oh, I see. :lol:

(I feel like I should say something in Welsh, but I can't think of anything much to say other than "dylwn i fod yn y gwely". I'm not sure how to say anything like "I have school tomorrow", which is what I'd like to say. Probably something like "byddaf i'n mynd i'r ysgol dydd wedi", but there are at least six or seven things wrong with that.)
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Re: Talk in a language you don't know

Postby linguoboy » Wed 12 Sep 2012 3:05 am

Tikolm wrote:(I feel like I should say something in Welsh, but I can't think of anything much to say other than "dylwn i fod yn y gwely". I'm not sure how to say anything like "I have school tomorrow", which is what I'd like to say. Probably something like "byddaf i'n mynd i'r ysgol dydd wedi", but there are at least six or seven things wrong with that.)

Just a couple, really. Dydd wedi doesn't mean anything; the word for "tomorrow" is yfory. Byddaf is technically correct, but nowadays most people say bydda (and the same is true with other 1S future verb forms). You don't even need an explicitly future form, however; like English, Welsh can use the present progressive with future meaning.

But this is neutral, i.e. "I'll be going to school tomorrow." If you want to express that you have to go to school, you would use a construction with rhaid, i.e.: Rhaid i mi fynd i'r ysgol yfory.. (Rhaid isn't a verb; the verb in the sentence is technically bod, but it's usually dropped in the affirmative.)
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Re: Talk in a language you don't know

Postby Tikolm » Wed 12 Sep 2012 9:13 pm

linguoboy wrote:Just a couple, really. Dydd wedi doesn't mean anything;

I didn't think it would. I was just making a guess based on the form blwyddyn wedi, which seems to mean "the next year".
the word for "tomorrow" is yfory. Byddaf is technically correct, but nowadays most people say bydda (and the same is true with other 1S future verb forms).

So the 'f' is dropped in spelling as well as speech? I didn't know that.
You don't even need an explicitly future form, however; like English, Welsh can use the present progressive with future meaning.

That makes sense.
But this is neutral, i.e. "I'll be going to school tomorrow." If you want to express that you have to go to school, you would use a construction with rhaid, i.e.: Rhaid i mi fynd i'r ysgol yfory.. (Rhaid isn't a verb; the verb in the sentence is technically bod, but it's usually dropped in the affirmative.)

I see.

So there would be three possible ways of writing this:
a) Bydda(f) i'n mynd i'r ysgol yfory. (neutral)
b) Dw i'n mynd i'r ysgol yfory. (neutral)
c) Rhaid i mi fynd i'r ysgol yfory. (necessary)
I think the appropriate one here would have been c), as the point was that I had to go to bed because I had to wake up early for school tomorrow. (Not sure what "wake up early for" would be.)
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