Tiny questions with quick answers - continuing thread


how come it’s not "Sut dych chi’n dweud” and but “Sut ydych chi’n dweud””


The first is just a shortening of the second - they are equally correct.


Regarding the call of a crow. There’s no chance that Brân would do as an alternative sound to craw, is there?

Meanwhile back to “Crow” -

You will probably recall from your time spent up North, that broad Northern dialects still pronounce Crow something like Crâ . Here’s something I just lifted from the Online Etymology Dictionary:
Old English crawe, which is held to be imitative of the bird’s cry. Compare Old Saxon kraia, Dutch kraai, Old High German chraja, German Kräke.



Reminds me, I came across the word “kraken” the other day. This was in a German context, but it turned out that it was the same in English.

Google tells me that it was an enormous mythical sea monster said to appear off the coast of Norway (although one online German-English dictionary I looked in the other day gave it as an octopus).


What is “pych” in English?



Ebychiad. So presumably like “pfft!”


According to Geiradur Prifysgol Cymru:

ailment, disease, cold, cough; vomit, puke, nausea, used fig.

Used here as an “interjection”, presumably. :slight_smile:


Diolch … my family used to speak Welsh not long ago :frowning: … been learning good ebychiadau/interjections … yet many young people around me now arent using them

Daro! - damn! … O fflam! O hec! … lot of the tiny bits that make Welsh rich are being shed like melting snow off a sunny roof! … so I can only try to learn myself.

Diolch eto! … pych is another string to my bow or what ever the phrase is!


an English equivalent could be “gross!” “wretch (up)!” etc?


Iestyn says this in the listening exercises. When I first heard it I thought, “I’ve never heard Iestyn say that”, and the very next time I was having a conversation with Iestyn he said it! :laughing:


Havin’ a look at sentences from challenges. What does that “w” stand for?

Dw i’n moyn gwbod y peth gorau i’w neud wythnos nesa


Ooo I love that question but I am working and cannot answer. I am sure somebody else will have answered by the time I can get home, ha, ha. I am sure I will love the answer just the same. :slight_smile:


The ‘w’ is ‘ei’. The sentence is theoretically Dw i’n moyn gwbod y peth gorau i ei neud wythnos nesa but you can’t have “i ei” together, so the ‘ei’ turns into ‘w’.


I’w = i + ei/eu

So in this situation it is “ei”. The gwneud here refers back to “peth gorau”. Word for word what is said is “the best thing to do it”. It’s called reflexive.


Kraken = giant mythical squid that leave large scars on whales.
Mythical until one came up in a trawlers net off New Zealand,
(only 60 feet long, so maybe a tiddler). :wink:

Cheers J.P


it’s also the brand of a good type of dark rum haha


Looking at sentences from Challenges again.

The other one told me that you were going to start = Dwedodd y llall wrtha i bo ti’n mynd i ddechrau.

He said that he knows someone who wanted to speak with you = Dwedodd e fod e’n nabod rhywun oedd yn moyn siarad gyda ti

Both sentences are past tense in English, but in Welsh the first seems present tense, the second past tense.

If I understood this right, why are they different?


It’s not, though - in examples like that, the second (or third, depending on how you count!) verb kind of inherits the time marker of the first - it’s just one of those ways in which languages work differently - in Welsh, dywedodd y llall wrtha i bo ti’n mynd i ddechrau could be either ‘you’re going’ or ‘you were going’ - in most cases, it doesn’t matter all that much - if it caused uncertainty in meaning, you’d circle back and go into more detail.

This kind of stuff is almost impossible to learn from lists or books or rules - you can only really pick it up through exposure and usage… :slight_smile:


It’s almost certainly almost always just better to learn the Welsh patterns in themselves, but… They’re actually really different structures in Italian & English, too - it’s just that you don’t notice until you find Welsh being even more radical about it.

In English and Italian, in the first sentence you have a subordinating link word (that, che), followed by a new subject and a new verb (you were going). In the second one your linking word (who, chi) is the subject of the next verb (wanted). It’s probably more obvious in English because we have to have explicit subject pronouns, but I reckon the Italian is basically doing the same thing.

So I think they fundamentally just are different types of sentence - it’s just rather more obvious in Welsh.

ETA: tl;dr version – in (1) ‘me’, ‘that’, and the subject of ‘were going’ (you) are three different things, in English and Italian; in (2) ‘someone’, ‘who’, and the subject of ‘wanted’ are all the same person. (1) and (2) are really very different from each other.


That’s another great question @gisella-albertini . I think if I made some bingo cards with my questions as I was going along you’d have some cards which are getting pretty full by now.

I’ve heard it explained in two very good ways - both of which work for me. One is the ‘inheritance’ of the tense - as per Aran’s explanation. The other is that when the person in the sentence said the thing, when they said it - ie in the past - this is literally what they said at the time (e.g. present tense).

I have come to think of these types of constructs as a ‘little bit cool’ because these are sentences where Welsh comes into its own and has its own way - it is not simply a translation of something else.

It feels like once you understand and can use them you are really speaking Welsh and not something translated from another language. (I am still working on this along with everyone else ie this is still an aspiration - so I’m not being a smart-arse here! )