math math vs glè mhath

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math math vs glè mhath

Unread post by Ionatan » Thu Nov 07, 2019 5:39 pm

I am seeing math math meaning very good in some examples. I would have expected glè mhath. I have also seen mòr mòr.

I wonder if this is a bit like English where we would use 'big big' when talking to a very young person. e.g. "Look baby Calum! See the big big lorry"; or to quote a well-known confectionery advert "I like the fried eggs because you can make a big big sandwich". However, in the example I have, it is two adults speaking to each other, which suggests that my theory is wrong.

So... would math math be better than glè mhath , the other way around, or just a different way of saying the same thing?

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Re: math math vs glè mhath

Unread post by GunChleoc » Thu Nov 07, 2019 11:10 pm

I'm not certain of the degree between the 2 expressions here, but math math is definitely adult language.
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Re: math math vs glè mhath

Unread post by AlexAkimov » Thu Nov 07, 2019 11:52 pm

For what it's worth I've been learning Gaelic for a couple of years and I'm struggling to remember seeing math math more than once, whereas I've seen glè mhath a gazillion times. Make of that what you may.

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Re: math math vs glè mhath

Unread post by akerbeltz » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:35 am

Doubling adjectives is not exclusively child language in Gaelic. But it's more colloquial than literal i.e. I would'nt write "bha am buidheann seo mòr mòr" in an academic essay but it would pass muster in a live news broadcast "bha buidheann mòr mòr de dhaoine ann an Glaschu an-dè".

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