[xi] in Gaelic

Ciamar a chanas mi.... / How do I say...
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Mairead
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[xi] in Gaelic

Unread postby Mairead » Mon Feb 04, 2019 6:05 pm

Hi, I was reading an analysis of non-lexical vocables in Scottish music (in Scots, English and Gaelic) and the following claim was made by the author:

"a vocable which falls outside the parameters of both Scots-English and Scots-Gaelic is [xi]"

(Please forgive the awkward 1980s language names ;) )

I'm no expert in the IPA, but is [xi] really not a syllable which exists in Gaelic? Is it not the syllable which begins "chì" and "chithinn"?

Tapadh leibh :D


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[xi] in Gaelic

Unread postby GunChleoc » Wed Feb 06, 2019 4:43 pm

It is a valid syllable, but unlike [hi:], I don't remember ever hearing it as a vocable
Oileanach chànan chuthachail
Na dealbhan agam

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[xi] in Gaelic

Unread postby Mairead » Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:20 pm

To clarify, she's talking about how Scots and Gaelic tend to stick to sounds that are possible within their own languages when coming up with vocables (excluding cases of borrowing vocables directly from other languages), so the main question is whether or not [xi] is an actual sound in Gaelic. [xi] exists as a vocable in canntaireachd. From what you say, it seems she was wrong on this point, and that [xi] is not an example of the phenomenon she is discussing (when languages will make vocables out of syllables which are permissible by the language's rules but never actually appear in words).
Tha avatar agam à dhealbh aig mo phiuthar anns an Cellardyke. Tha trì videothan Ghàidhlig agam anns an Youtube.
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[xi] in Gaelic

Unread postby GunChleoc » Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:55 pm

It's entirely possible that she made a mistake - I am not an expert on the subject at all.
Oileanach chànan chuthachail
Na dealbhan agam

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[xi] in Gaelic

Unread postby Mairead » Wed Feb 06, 2019 11:30 pm

No worries! I just didn't know enough about the IPA and about the finer details of Gaelic pronounciation to know if "chì" is not as hard a sound as [xi]. :D The thesis is a good one but the author is not a Gaelic speaker herself so it's possible she overlooked the existence of [xi] in some Gaelic words. :D
Tha avatar agam à dhealbh aig mo phiuthar anns an Cellardyke. Tha trì videothan Ghàidhlig agam anns an Youtube.
My avatar is from a photo that my sister took in Cellardyke. I have three Gaelic videos on Youtube.