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Noswaith dda - A Welsh question

Posted: 2015-01-21, 5:12
by dEhiN
Noswaith dda all, I just started learning Welsh (using Teach Yourself Complete Welsh). I've gone through the introduction and the first dialogue. Using the very little vocab that was in deialog 1, I tried to put together the following sentence:

Good afternoon, I am David. I am a learner of Welsh.

Here's what I have:

Prynhawn da, Dafid ydwi i. Dysgwr ydw i o Gymraeg.

But I'm not sure of the right sentence order. Is that second sentence correct, or should it be Dysgwr o Gymraeg ydw i or even perhaps Dysgwr ydw i, dysgwr o Gymraeg*.

*In the dialogue in the book they have one line which follows that pattern: Dysgwr ydw i, dysgwr nerfus iawn (it's said by a student speaking to a Welsh tutor)

*Also, I wrote Gymraeg instead of Cymraeg because of the soft mutation, but I'm not sure if that is applied to the language name.

Re: Noswaith dda - A Welsh question

Posted: 2015-01-21, 17:03
by linguoboy
dEhiN wrote:Prynhawn da, Dafid ydwi i.

But I'm not sure of the right sentence order. Is that second sentence correct, or should it be Dysgwr o Cymraeg ydw i or even perhaps Dysgwr ydw i, dysgwr o Gymraeg*.
The first of these two alternatives is correct. Welsh doesn't allow tmesis of a noun phrase any more than English does.

Maybe you know this already, but the usual colloquial pronunciation of prynhawn is p'nawn, and it is occasionally so spelled informally.

dEhiN wrote:*Also, I wrote Gymraeg instead of Cymraeg because of the soft mutation, but I'm not sure if that is applied to the language name.
Cymraeg does take the soft mutation as appropriate after prepositions, but in this case no preposition is necessary because it's a genitive expression like Plaid Cymru ("party of Wales").

Re: Noswaith dda - A Welsh question

Posted: 2015-01-22, 0:37
by dEhiN
linguoboy wrote:
dEhiN wrote:Prynhawn da, Dafid ydwi i.

But I'm not sure of the right sentence order. Is that second sentence correct, or should it be Dysgwr o Cymraeg ydw i or even perhaps Dysgwr ydw i, dysgwr o Gymraeg*.
The first of these two alternatives is correct. Welsh doesn't allow tmesis of a noun phrase any more than English does.

Maybe you know this already, but the usual colloquial pronunciation of prynhawn is p'nawn, and it is occasionally so spelled informally.

I didn't know that, but thanks for the info! And I guess then in dysgwr Cymraeg, Cymraeg is used as an adjective equivalent to English "Welsh learner"? Because I was translating literally "learner of Welsh".

Re: Noswaith dda - A Welsh question

Posted: 2015-01-22, 3:54
by linguoboy
dEhiN wrote:I didn't know that, but thanks for the info! And I guess then in dysgwr Cymraeg, Cymraeg is used as an adjective equivalent to English "Welsh learner"? Because I was translating literally "learner of Welsh".
Except that o is really only equivalent to English "of" in expressions of quantity, e.g. hanner pwys o gaws "half a pound of cheese". Otherwise, it mostly translates as "from", e.g. Dw i'n dod o Texas "I'm from Texas", o hyn ymlaen "from now on", dw i'n ei adnabod o'i weld "I know him from seeing him."

Neither "Welsh learner" nor "dysgwr Cymraeg" contains an adjective. Or, rather, "Welsh learner" does but only when the meaning is "learner who is Welsh". If the meaning is "learner who learns Welsh", then it's a noun-noun compound. Dysgwr Cymraeg can't have the first meaning because the adjective form of Cymraeg is Cymreig. Dysgwr Cymraeg can only mean "a learner who learns Welsh" or "a learner who speakers Welsh". It's a genitive noun construction just like Latin modus operandi or Russian искатель воды, except that Welsh lacks case inflections and expresses this relationship purely through word order.

Re: Noswaith dda - A Welsh question

Posted: 2015-01-23, 4:59
by dEhiN
Thanks for the explanation of o.

And I finally get what you meant about "Welsh learner". I kept thinking of how in English, the names of languages are adjectives. So I mistook the "Welsh" in "Welsh learner" to be an adjective. But I see what you mean.

Thanks for all the explanations linguoboy!