Irish Gaelic Translations
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Category "grammar"

How to say “must” and “can”

This article was contributed by Michael.

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If-sentences

In Irish, if-sentences can be confusing because different types of if-sentences require a different if-word. Let us take the following two English sentences:

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“Tá” and “Is” – the “to be” verbs

In Irish, there are two equivalents to English’s “to be” verb. Those are / and is. is used when you are expressing something that will most likely change soon. For example:

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Prepositions and Pronouns

Conjugated Prepositions

Fifteen of the “simple” Irish prepositions are conjugated for pronoun they refer to. For example, to say “to me,” you can’t just have “do mé.” You use the conjugated form “dom.”

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Masculine and Feminine

Common mistakes that learners should avoid.
The distinction between masculine and feminine (grammatical gender) is important in Irish. One of the ways it is expressed is through ‘lenition.’

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Lenition

Lenition is one of the two mutations that Irish words undergo, and it can be a very tricky topic for many people.
Anciently, lenition marks where a word was preceded by another word that ended in a vowel. Over time, being stuck between two vowels caused a weakening or “lightening” of the sound of the consonant. In linguistic terms, the consonant became a “spirant.” Rather than being a stop, where the teeth, tongue and lips stop air from leaving your mouth as you make the sound, the form of the sound changed to allow air through.

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Genitive Case

Use of the Genetive Form

The genitive case, in general, is used to take Noun A and use it to describe, define, limit, or modify Noun B. The genitive case is a signal that Noun A is related to Noun B in a close and intimate way: in English we express the relation in terms of possession, origin, material, belonging and membership, and the like.

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Counting Objects

When counting objects, the words for numbers change.

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Copulating with the Copula 3

The next major use of the copula is what we call fronting

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Copulating with the Copula 2

Perhaps one of the most frustrating features of Irish to the beginner is the two different verbs for “to be.”

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Copulating with the Copula 1

The typical way of expressing “I am a teacher” (for example) would be to use the copula: Is múinteoir méiss MOON-chore may

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Conjugated Prepositions

Fifteen of the “simple” Irish prepositions are conjugated for pronoun they refer to. For example, to say “to me,” you can’t just have “do mé.” You use the conjugated form “dom.”

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