SSi Forum

The meaning of 'co'


What is the meaning of ‘co’ I have seen it used several times and most recently on S4C Iaith ar Daith on the title page wher ‘co ni off’ is used. From the context it seems to mean ‘are’ or perhaps ‘there are’. What is it an abbreviation for and is it primarily used in SW of NW?


The 'co stems from rhacw (acw) and is primarily SW. The phrase " 'co ni off" can mean “off we go”/“here we go”/“there we go”.


Diolch yn fawr


During my childhood summer holidays in Llangadog, Dyffryn Tywi, (before learning Welsh), I’m sure I frequently heard something like “co fe”. The context showed it meant “look at him”. Is there any other explanation? Might I have been mishearing the phrase?


'co is also used as a contraction of dacw so " 'co fe" would be “that is him”, which I think also fits your context, Huw.


Co is also used as an abbreviation of cof as in co’bach (memory stick), and in Y Co Bach, the nickname of Richard Hughes, where (and I stand to be corrected) it means Cofi Bach (someone from Caernarfon).


I’ve heard children in Llandysul use this with accompanied eye rolling and appropriate expression in the voice - Co fe! - as in “Just look at him, will you! Who does he think he is?” :rofl:


This is exactly how I remember it in Llangadog all those summers ago, although I’m not sure if eye-rolling had been invented by then. :laughing: