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Subject: Re: Gaelic lists
From: Neil McEwan <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Neil McEwan <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sun, 20 Sep 1998 07:49:01 -0300

text/plain (61 lines)

-----Original Message-----
From: Juliet Brown <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]>

>>From: Neil McEwan <[log in to unmask]>
>>Subject:      Re: Gaelic lists

>>   The sounds are mostly the same between Irish and SG but the grammar
>>for Scots Gaelic is much more simple than that of Irish (no present
>>tense; no eclipsis; fewer declensions; mono- and polysyllabic verbs
>>declined the same way; etc.)  Personally I think SG would be easier for
>>the beginner.

>I have to disagree on both counts. The grammers are really very much the
>same as far as pronounciation is concerned,

   The effects of grammar on pronunciation are close but not the same
for both languages: Irish has eclipsis, SG doesn't.  In any case changes
to pronunciation are only a small part of the grammatical differences
between the two languages.

> thought the Scots reflects this less in its' spelling. (For example:
>pronouncing eclipses without actually having them).

    Not sure what you mean by this.  I've heard that changing "n" to "m"
before the letters b, f, m, or p is a form of eclipsis but in SG every
is still pronounced (e.g. in the phrase "am bta" you would still pronounce
the "m" and the "b"), whereas in Irish you have the initially confusing
development of having the first consonant in an word disappear when
the word is eclipsed (e.g. "i mBal Feirste" is pronounced as though
there were no letter "b" in it at all).

>Also I think the Scots has far more of a burr to it and many sounds are
>rolled beeper in the throat.

     Yes, but then again Irish has a habit of leaving out letters in speech
that are spelled in the written word (e.g. the "f" in the future tense of
verbs).  Both languages have their own peculiarities in this area, but I
still find that SG is more consistent internally.

> I've been practicing it for over a year now
>and still can't get that cursed broad GH/DH to sound right.

    The "gh/dh" sound is one of the glories of Gaelic!  It provides the
necessary harsh complement to all those vowels.  It's a shame it
disappeared in Irish (except in Munster I hear, but even there it's only
a "g" sound).


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