A bit of exposure will give you an idea what you can get away with here and what you can't. The most important thing is to learn to recognise the plural endings, so you can pick up on when they're being used.In general it may be said that plural forms in Irish are much freer than in English. As pl. of óráid "speech", óráidí, óráideanna, óráideacha, and óráidíocha would all be understood, and none of them would be shocking to a native speaker.
ciaran1212 wrote:Is this right? I understand this, so if it's right, I can learn off this system and at least I will then be able to deal with the changes at the start of the word. As far as I can tell, the above system should not interfere with whatever declension system I subscribe to (there seems to be a few; 5 declensions, 6 declesions, Carnie's own 10 declensions + 6 plural types, and the 15 declension system Linguoboy gave above).
Ó mo Dhia, nach bhfuil sé like, ró-confusing?
linguoboy wrote:I have to say I think Carnie makes it all more confusing than it has to be. His distinction between "Lenition 1" and "Lenition 2" and "Eclipsis 1" and "Eclipsis 2", for instance. Other sources simply teach the DeNTaLS rule. That is, when two dental sounds come together, lenition does not take place. Practically speaking, the most common case is after the article an, but this also helps account for, e.g. the lack of lenition after as although this is characteristic of most other simple prepositions.
(I assume Carnie's rules work for the Standard, but in Munster the DeNTaLS rule applies to lenition but not eclipsis. So an dorais "of the door" but ag an ndoras "at the door". Personally, I find it makes more sense to describe the variation in this way rather than saying that there are two distinct types of eclipsis and one of them simply doesn't exist in Munster.)
T-prefixation can also be thought of as a special case of lenition. Historically, the definite article had a final t in some circumstances which was later lost. However, it's been retained before vowel sounds, though the convention here is write it as a prefix to the following word. Thus an t-ainm rather than *ant ainm, although the latter better reflects the historical development. Similarly, one can think of an tsaoil as representing a respelling of *ant shaoil. First you have lenition of the consonant, then the /t/ reappears. (This is how Ó Siadhail prefers to deal with it at least.)
Everyone's brain works differently, but I personally found it worked better for me to learn phrases which illustrated these rules rather than trying to memorise all the rules by themselves. For instance, rather than committing to memory the fact that Dé prefixes h, I just learned the names of the days of the week, one of which happens to be Dé hAoine "Friday". Learning the rule Carnie gives will ensure that you say Dé hAoine correctly. But simply memorising Dé hAoine gives you the same benefit, and adds to your vocabulary at the same time--something the rule is no help with.
ciaran1212 wrote:Is the "Lenition 1" rule Carnie mentions the general rule for Lenition?
ciaran1212 wrote:And how does this account for Eclipsis?
ciaran1212 wrote:I'm really more concerned about things that come after the article and after prepositions and such. I would, for example, say "ar an mbord", but I have no idea why that is the correct form. It is nice to be able to get that correct without learning the rules just because it "sounds right", but my innate knowledge of how to inflect words like that is extremely limited, so I will need rules to cover all the other words. I can work out (using Carnie's rules) that "on the chair" would be "ar an gcathaoir". I could learn off by heart that "on the chair" is "ar an gcathaoir" without knowing why, but wouldn't that approach mean that I would have to take every change in a noun as a new lexical unit to be learned by rote, thus multiplying the number of words to be learned off severalfold?
ciaran1212 wrote:I'd happily use the DeNTaLS-DoTS method if it works, but I'll have to learn the normal rules first. Can you (or anyone) explain these or point me to somewhere where they are explained? I haven't come across them in my search to clarify the matter so far .
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