I dread to think what I sound like speaking Irish--my first teacher was
from Kerry, then I did the Gael Linn course with Fini/n Ward, from Teelin,
and worked with Terence McCaughey (Armagh or someplace) then basically
listened only to RTE Irish. I remember people on the Aran Islands
hearing my Irish and immediately identifying me as from Dublin (which
I think may have been an insult). What about Dublin-schooled speakers
who get most of their dialect from RTE? What variety of Irish would
you consider that (besides immensely funny to Aran Islanders)?
> Just so that people don't think that me and Seamus are trying to play games
> here, as far as pronunciation of Gaelic goes, the fact is that there is not
> one single standard way to pronounce words, but three! There are three
> quite distinct (and geographically isolated) dialects, broadly speaking,
> To give an idea how different they are - imagine if the only kinds of Englush
> spoken in the world were Texan, Australian and Jamaican. None has more legitim
> acy than the other two, except perhaps by virtue of number os speakers. The
> written language is no more firmly based in any one of them than in the others
> So, it is really difficult to say what the standard (ie 'correct') pronunciati
> is. The best that someone learning English in such a world could do, is hope
> to sound like a Texan, an Aussie or a Jamaican. If she tried to sound like all
> three, it is likely that no-one would understand her.
> The same is true of Irish. There *is* an official standard pronunciati
> (as used by the dictioaries), but if you ask three native-speakers from the
> different corners of Ireland to pronounce a word, you can be positive that
> they will all be different, and that none will sound like the dictionary. In
> fact, now that I think of it, neither De Bhaldraithe nor O/ Do/naill uses
> a pronunciation scheme (these are the two big dictionaries), probably for
> that very reason.
> So that's why it's hard to say what the 'right' pronunciation is.
> Since most Irish people actually speak English as their first language,
> probably your best shot in sounding 'correct' is to pronounce words like
> feadog, bodhran, Gaeilge, etc as *they* do.
> It's all complicated by the fact that, as an Irishman trying to
> write a pronunciation guide to Irish words in English, for American ears,
> what I hear in my mind's ear as I write the phonetic description down, is
> not the same as what you say when you read it.
> Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh, I give up :-)
> [log in to unmask]
> PS I hope Seamus didn't take my earlier 'feadog' posting as a flame. It
> certainly wasn't intended as such. It's so hard to describe a language
> with about 60 distinct sounds and only an 18-letter alphabet, through the
> medium of another language with about 50 distinct sounds and a 26-letter
> alphabet, when both languages give such a hopelessly inaccurate description
> of pronunciation!
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What says "Pieces of seven, Pieces of seven"?
A Parroty error