I'm curious

Ciamar a chanas mi.... / How do I say...
caiptean
Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2012 8:22 am
Language Level: Advanced Beginner
Corrections: Please correct my grammar
Location: Iowa, USA
Contact:

I'm curious

Unread post by caiptean » Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:11 am

I got to thinking in the car today, why do people say "an t-ainm a th' orm" as opposed to "m' ainm, d' ainm, etc." ? Why is it Dè an t-ainm a th' ort instead of Dè d' ainm? Would that be incorrect grammatically speaking? Or is it just that no one says that, so it would be weird if you did? I have no intention of saying it like that, because I like the way Gaelic comes up with interesting ways to say things; I was just curious why they didn't go with what seems to be a simpler construction.



GunChleoc
Rianaire
Posts: 4451
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2007 11:26 am
Language Level: Mion-chùiseach
Corrections: Please correct my grammar
Location: Dùthaich mo chridhe
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by GunChleoc » Wed Dec 18, 2013 11:15 am

I think people say it like that to put emphasis on "ainm". Just like they say "An e Albannach a th' annad?"
Oileanach chànan chuthachail
Na dealbhan agam

Níall Beag
Rianaire
Posts: 1353
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2007 6:58 pm
Language Level: Cofhurtail (chan ann bho thùs)
Corrections: I'm fine either way
Location: Sruighlea, Alba
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by Níall Beag » Wed Dec 18, 2013 12:42 pm

caiptean wrote:I got to thinking in the car today, why do people say "an t-ainm a th' orm" as opposed to "m' ainm, d' ainm, etc." ? Why is it Dè an t-ainm a th' ort instead of Dè d' ainm? Would that be incorrect grammatically speaking? Or is it just that no one says that, so it would be weird if you did? I have no intention of saying it like that, because I like the way Gaelic comes up with interesting ways to say things; I was just curious why they didn't go with what seems to be a simpler construction.
Did you chose your name? Is it really a part of you? It's normally what your parents chose to call you these days, and then there's the nicknames that everyone else choses to call you. That which we call a rose / by any other name would smell as sweet. And consider that the nearest-sounding word to ainm is anam -- soul. M' anam... that's a part of me. You can change my name and I'll still be the same person, but change my soul and I won't be.

akerbeltz
Rianaire
Posts: 1745
Joined: Mon Nov 17, 2008 2:26 am
Language Level: Barail am broinn baraille
Corrections: Please don't analyse my Gaelic
Location: Glaschu
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by akerbeltz » Wed Dec 18, 2013 2:22 pm

Agreeing with all the above - just want to add that idiomatic usage sometimes just cannot be explained. It probably had a rational explanation at one point but that is no longer clear. Why does English prefer 'black and white' to 'white and black'? I'm usually all for finding a rule but in this instance, it's better just to accept it.

caiptean
Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2012 8:22 am
Language Level: Advanced Beginner
Corrections: Please correct my grammar
Location: Iowa, USA
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by caiptean » Thu Dec 19, 2013 9:01 am

Fair play, tapadh leibh a h-uile. :) Bha mi dìreach ceasnachail.

poor_mouse
Posts: 939
Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2010 7:33 pm
Language Level: beginner
Corrections: Please correct my grammar
Location: An Ruis, St Petersburg
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by poor_mouse » Thu Dec 19, 2013 9:30 am

It's really interersting that the name is neither "mo" no "agam", but "orm": neither my part, my property no my possession etc.
As if it's a thing that somebody has laid on me, and I haven't any power over it.

Tha sin fìor inntinneach nach eil an t-ainm aona chuid "mo" no "agam", ach "orm": chan esan mo phàirt a tha ann, no rud a tha agam.
Mar gu bheil cuideigin air chur orm 's chan eil smachd sam bith agam air.

(Dh'feuch mi "neither-no" agus "as if" a chleachdadh sa Ghàidhlig, ach chan eil mi cinnteach ciamar a tha e ag obrach).
Eilidh -- Luchag Bhochd

Seonaidh
Posts: 1486
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2008 8:00 pm
Corrections: I'm fine either way
Location: Faisg air Gleann Rathais

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by Seonaidh » Fri Dec 20, 2013 6:59 pm

It is when one starts thinking about why "other languages" have seemingly strange ways of putting things that one often starts to wonder whether one's own language is also "strange" to those not born into it. For instance, while most I-E languages tend to use either inversion or question markers to turn a statement into a question, the English language only does this sort of thing with a very limited number of verbs, e.g. "be", "can", "must", "will"/"shall", "ought" and probably a few others. Gor instance, if you want to turn "he ran into twon" into a question, you can't just say "Ran he into town?" - it just doesn't sound right to an English speaker. Even just to negate it, you can't really say "He ran not into town". And as for "Ran he not into town?" or "Ran not he into town?"...ouch!

So indeed, it's just the way it is - "Dè an t-ainm a tha ort?" (usually with the A of "tha" apostrophed away) Just as a non-native English speaker might find the typical, cordial English greeting of "How do you do?" somewhat amusing!

Níall Beag
Rianaire
Posts: 1353
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2007 6:58 pm
Language Level: Cofhurtail (chan ann bho thùs)
Corrections: I'm fine either way
Location: Sruighlea, Alba
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by Níall Beag » Fri Dec 20, 2013 10:05 pm

Seonaidh wrote:Just as a non-native English speaker might find the typical, cordial English greeting of "How do you do?" somewhat amusing!
On a tangential note, I was once flicking through an English phrasebook just out of idle curiosity. I can't remember the language it was in, but whatever it was, I knew enough to recognise some of the most basic phrases. I saw "how do you do?" in it, and chuckled to myself. "Nobody says that" I thought, but then I looked at what it was a tr*nsl*t**n of... it wasn't in there in the sense of "how are you?" but actually "pleased to meet you." it kind of stopped me in my tracks, because even though I don't say it myself, I suddenly started feeling like it was just... right again.

poor_mouse
Posts: 939
Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2010 7:33 pm
Language Level: beginner
Corrections: Please correct my grammar
Location: An Ruis, St Petersburg
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by poor_mouse » Mon Dec 23, 2013 2:25 pm

Seonaidh wrote:Even just to negate it, you can't really say "He ran not into town". And as for "Ran he not into town?" or "Ran not he into town?"...ouch!
Jane Austen wrote:Mary wished to say something very sensible, but knew not how.
B' urrainnear seo o chionn goirid (dhà linn not trì -- a bheil seo cho fada? :) )

This thing with "ainm" is not so strange; I think, it's quite logical, though there are a lot other things, which we cannot now undestand.
Eilidh -- Luchag Bhochd

Seonaidh
Posts: 1486
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2008 8:00 pm
Corrections: I'm fine either way
Location: Faisg air Gleann Rathais

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by Seonaidh » Mon Dec 23, 2013 8:22 pm

Indeed, I'm (vaguely) aware of an old Yorkshire mining song that starts something like "Saw you owt of my laddie...?" or some such, so this could be a relatively recent thing. However, I'm also aware that many British nymn-writers - in English, Welsh and Gaelic - of the 19th century often used somewhat archaic forms of language. It may be that Ms. Austen was doing the same in this instance.

Co-dhiù, ma chanas tu "I knew not how I got there" an-diugh sa Bheurla, cha bhi duilgheadas ann le tuigsinn. Ach tha blas car "seann-fhasanta" air.

poor_mouse
Posts: 939
Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2010 7:33 pm
Language Level: beginner
Corrections: Please correct my grammar
Location: An Ruis, St Petersburg
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by poor_mouse » Tue Dec 24, 2013 6:23 am

Tha gu dearbh!
Eilidh -- Luchag Bhochd

GunChleoc
Rianaire
Posts: 4451
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2007 11:26 am
Language Level: Mion-chùiseach
Corrections: Please correct my grammar
Location: Dùthaich mo chridhe
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by GunChleoc » Tue Dec 24, 2013 3:35 pm

poor_mouse wrote:(Dh'feuch mi "neither-no" agus "as if" a chleachdadh sa Ghàidhlig, ach chan eil mi cinnteach ciamar a tha e ag obrach).
It's neither X nor Y = Chan e X no Y a th' ann

As if it was = Mar gum biodh, Mar gur e X a bh' ann, Mar gum b' e X a bh' ann
Oileanach chànan chuthachail
Na dealbhan agam

poor_mouse
Posts: 939
Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2010 7:33 pm
Language Level: beginner
Corrections: Please correct my grammar
Location: An Ruis, St Petersburg
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by poor_mouse » Tue Dec 24, 2013 7:37 pm

Mòran taing!
Eilidh -- Luchag Bhochd

bb3ca201
Posts: 7
Joined: Mon May 05, 2014 11:39 pm
Language Level: intermediate/advanced
Corrections: I'm fine either way
Location: Chan eil fhios
Contact:

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by bb3ca201 » Tue May 06, 2014 5:18 pm

caiptean wrote:I got to thinking in the car today, why do people say "an t-ainm a th' orm" as opposed to "m' ainm, d' ainm, etc." ? Why is it Dè an t-ainm a th' ort instead of Dè d' ainm? Would that be incorrect grammatically speaking? Or is it just that no one says that, so it would be weird if you did? I have no intention of saying it like that, because I like the way Gaelic comes up with interesting ways to say things; I was just curious why they didn't go with what seems to be a simpler construction.
"Dè an t-ainm a th' ort (or "oirbh" if you're using "sibh") is the normal, native way to say it (from all the native Gaelic speakers that I've had the fortune to hear). It may be certainly possible to say it the other way...but I guess it just sseems unnatural.

Funnily enough, as an aside: the response? Is mise + your name!

Seonaidh
Posts: 1486
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2008 8:00 pm
Corrections: I'm fine either way
Location: Faisg air Gleann Rathais

Re: I'm curious

Unread post by Seonaidh » Fri May 09, 2014 12:42 am

No it's not. That's more an answer to "Cò thusa?" or "Cò sibhse?"

Post Reply