Modal verbs in Gàidhlig + forms of verb that follow them

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Polygot2017
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Modal verbs in Gàidhlig + forms of verb that follow them

Unread postby Polygot2017 » Thu Sep 06, 2018 11:57 am

I'm starting to get my head round the different verb tenses in Gàidhlig, but I have some questions about modal verbs. My first question is, after any modal verb in Gàidhlig, is it always followed by the verbal noun, or is not that simple? As far as I can tell, it looks like the verbal noun is always used, I want to be sure I've got this right so I can make proper sentences with them.

Specifically, the modal verbs I mean are want, would like, like, can, have to/must, need, have, should, could, etc.

I believe I've seen after 'I must' (feumaidh mi) that the second verb goes to the end of the sentence - is this a grammar rule only for 'must', or does it happen with any other modal verbs?

For all other modal verbs, is it like in English where you just start out with the modal verb then follow it with the next verb (in this case, the verbal noun)? How about if we stack up 3 consecutive verbs in a row (e.g. 'I need to practice speaking Gaelic', etc)? (Pretty sure in a previous reply here it was said that Gàidhlig would avoid that).

I need to know how these modals work in the past and future tenses too, but I'll get to that later (stuff like 'I wanted to', 'I had to', 'I could/couldn't', 'I would have liked', 'I liked', etc). Maybe I could try writing a few sentences with each modal verb and you could tell me if I've got them correct or not.

Thanks.



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Modal verbs in Gàidhlig + forms of verb that follow them

Unread postby GunChleoc » Thu Sep 06, 2018 5:29 pm

This is more a matter of syntax than of the meaning being modal verbs in English - I guess most of the stuff you would express with a modal verb in English does fall into this category though.

Feumaidh mi seo a dhèanamh
Bu toigh leam seo a dhèanamh
Tha mi ag iarraidh seo a dhèanamh
...
Oileanach chànan chuthachail
Na dealbhan agam

Polygot2017
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Modal verbs in Gàidhlig + forms of verb that follow them

Unread postby Polygot2017 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 12:38 pm

GunChleoc wrote:Source of the post This is more a matter of syntax than of the meaning being modal verbs in English - I guess most of the stuff you would express with a modal verb in English does fall into this category though.

Feumaidh mi seo a dhèanamh
Bu toigh leam seo a dhèanamh
Tha mi ag iarraidh seo a dhèanamh
...


Ok, in the last few days I've been going through a good book called 'Concise Grammar Scottish Gaelic' and it explains things in a fairly easy to understand way, and has some formulas for the word order of sentences with modal verbs. In order to see whether I've got this correct, can you tell me if these sentences are ok?....

I'll use the verb 'clean' here (with the verbal noun 'glanadh' and make sentences about cleaning the house), and I'll go through the main modal verbs and in different tenses too...

1) I want to clean the house - Tha mi ag iarraidgh a' glanadh an taigh.
(with 'airson): Tha mi airson a' glanadh an taigh (is this the correct word order with 'airson'?)

(It seems 'ag iarraidgh' and 'airson' are interchangeable, so one can use whichever form they prefer).

2) I wanted to clean the house - Bha mi ag iarraidgh a' glanadh an taigh.
(with 'airson): Bha mi airson a' glanadh an taigh (logically speaking, I'm thinking 'Bha mi airson' is correct for 'I wanted to...', is that correct'?)

3) I would like to clean the house - Bu toil leam an taigh a' glanadh (I think using 'would like' causes the second verb to go to the end of the sentence in Scottish Gaelic, is this correct?)

4) I can clean the house - Is urrainn dhomh an taigh a glanadh
(I've also seen a form with 'Tha mi a chomosach air...', is it interchangeable with 'Is urrainn dhodh'? and, and would it be correct to say 'Tha mi comosach air an taigh a glanadh' ?)

Question form: Can you clean the house? - An urrainn dhut an taigh a glanadh?

5) I could/couldn't clean the house (past tense of can, i.e. 'was able to')

(Not sure about this form, but following the logic of making regular verbs into the past tense, I'm guessing you'd use either the simple past or the imperfect here?)

6) I could clean the house (conditional tense of 'can', i.e. 'would be able to')

(Again, I haven't yet figured this out, but logically speaking it'd be 'can' put into the Gaelic conditional form, right?)

5) I must/have to clean the house - Feumaidh mi an taigh a glanadh

6) I had to clean the house - Dh'fheumaidh mi an taigh a glanach

(Not 100% sure of this, but logically speaking would you simply change 'Feumaidh' to the simple past tense with lenition, i.e into 'Dh'fheumaidh', and then keep the same word order as with 'feumaidh'?

7) I need to clean the house - Leig mi leas an taigh a glanach OR Leig mi leas a glanach an taigh.

(From what I've seen, 'need' in Gaelic is 'leig a leas', is this correct or is there another form, and not sure whether it causes inversion or not?)

8) I needed to clean the house

(How do you make 'Leig mi leas' into the past tense here?)

9) I should clean the house - (I think this uses a form of 'Bu chòir', but does it cause inversion of the 2nd verb in the sentence?)

So in summary, 'feumaidh', 'can' and 'would like' cause the 2nd verb to go to the end of a sentence, whereas forms of 'want' do not. Not sure about 'to need' and 'should' in terms of inversion'. Also when using a verbal noun after a modal verb, I'm not sure whether the particle is a or a', (with or without the apostrophe...I've seen sources written both ways).

Thanks.

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Modal verbs in Gàidhlig + forms of verb that follow them

Unread postby akerbeltz » Tue Sep 11, 2018 12:51 pm

1) I want to clean the house - Tha mi ag iarraidgh a' glanadh an taigh.
(with 'airson): Tha mi airson a' glanadh an taigh (is this the correct word order with 'airson'?)


tha mi ag iarraidh/airson an taigh a ghlanadh

(It seems 'ag iarraidgh' and 'airson' are interchangeable, so one can use whichever form they prefer).

Yes, airson is not so common in this usage on the mainland though.

2) I wanted to clean the house - Bha mi ag iarraidgh a' glanadh an taigh.
(with 'airson): Bha mi airson a' glanadh an taigh (logically speaking, I'm thinking 'Bha mi airson' is correct for 'I wanted to...', is that correct'?)

bha mi ag iarraidh an taigh a ghlanadh
3) I would like to clean the house - Bu toil leam an taigh a' glanadh (I think using 'would like' causes the second verb to go to the end of the sentence in Scottish Gaelic, is this correct?)

but toigh leam an taigh a ghlanadh

4) I can clean the house - Is urrainn dhomh an taigh a glanadh
(I've also seen a form with 'Tha mi a chomosach air...', is it interchangeable with 'Is urrainn dhodh'? and, and would it be correct to say 'Tha mi comosach air an taigh a glanadh' ?)

's urrainn dhomh an taigh a ghlanadh
tha mi comasach air an taigh a ghlanadh (not really a common way of saying it)

Question form: Can you clean the house? - An urrainn dhut an taigh a glanadh?

... an taigh a ghlanadh

5) I could/couldn't clean the house (past tense of can, i.e. 'was able to')
(Not sure about this form, but following the logic of making regular verbs into the past tense, I'm guessing you'd use either the simple past or the imperfect here?)

cha b' urrainn dhomh an taigh a ghlanadh

6) I could clean the house (conditional tense of 'can', i.e. 'would be able to')

b' urrainn dhomh an taigh a ghlanadh

5) I must/have to clean the house - Feumaidh mi an taigh a glanadh

... an taigh a ghlanadh

6) I had to clean the house - Dh'fheumaidh mi an taigh a glanach

No, feum is only used in the future or conditional. For the past, feud is invoked
b' fheudar dhomh an taigh a ghlanadh


7) I need to clean the house - Leig mi leas an taigh a glanach OR Leig mi leas a glanach an taigh.

That's almost always only used in the negative you don't have to/you're not obliged to...

cha leig thu leas an taigh a ghlanadh
8) I needed to clean the house
(How do you make 'Leig mi leas' into the past tense here?)

b' fheudar dhomh an taigh a ghlanadh
or (works in all tensens)
bha agam ris an taigh a ghlanadh

9) I should clean the house - (I think this uses a form of 'Bu chòir', but does it cause inversion of the 2nd verb in the sentence?)

bu chòir dhomh an taigh a ghlanadh

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Modal verbs in Gàidhlig + forms of verb that follow them

Unread postby Polygot2017 » Tue Sep 11, 2018 2:40 pm

Thanks for your help, akerbeltz. So basically with modal verbs, the verbal noun that follows always lenites (well, if it starts with one of the letters in Gaelic that can be lenited)?

akerbeltz wrote:
2) I wanted to clean the house - Bha mi ag iarraidgh a' glanadh an taigh.



Is it possible to say 'Bha mi airson...' also for 'I wanted to', or would that not sound very natural?

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Modal verbs in Gàidhlig + forms of verb that follow them

Unread postby akerbeltz » Tue Sep 11, 2018 2:59 pm

Yes, bha mi airson is ok to use

Check this section on what's going on with the a. Gimme a shout if it's still not clear.

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Modal verbs in Gàidhlig + forms of verb that follow them

Unread postby Polygot2017 » Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:37 pm

akerbeltz wrote:Source of the post Yes, bha mi airson is ok to use

Check this section on what's going on with the a. Gimme a shout if it's still not clear.


Thanks for the link - I've read it and it seems to make sense. So basically after a modal verb, the second verb that follows it is an 'infinitive like' verb, and hence uses the 'infinitive particle' of 'a', and changes the verbal noun as you listed in the table in the article?

Another thing - didn't you mention an article about inversion a while ago, and if so, is it related to word order inversion with modal verbs (i.e. putting the second verb at the end of a sentence with modal verbs)? If so, it would be handy for me to read if you can send me the link.

Thanks.

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Modal verbs in Gàidhlig + forms of verb that follow them

Unread postby akerbeltz » Thu Sep 13, 2018 2:18 pm

So basically after a modal verb, the second verb that follows it is an 'infinitive like' verb, and hence uses the 'infinitive particle' of 'a', and changes the verbal noun as you listed in the table in the article?


No. What follows is a (lenited) verbal noun (e.g. cheannach) and the whole thing (e.g. a cheannach) is an infinitive-like construction. There IS NO INFINITIVE VERB IN GAELIC! Sorry for shouting :naire:

If so, it would be handy for me to read if you can send me the link.

Link is at the bottom of that page I linked above.