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PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 12:36 pm 
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REGULAR VERBS PART II

ASKING AND ANSWERING QUESTIONS

Unlike English, which has a variety of options for asking questions (including simply using a rising inflection at the end of a sentence), Irish forms questions by prefixing short “semi-words,” called “interrogative particles,” to the verb. For the present and future tenses, these particles are “an” and “nach.”

BOTH PARTICLES CAUSE ECLIPSIS, IF THEY OCCUR BEFORE AN ECLIPSABLE CONSONANT.

“An” is used to phrase a question positively:

An gcanann sé an t-amhrán sin? Does he sing that song?

“Nach” is used to phrase a question negatively:

Nach gcanann sé an t-amhrán sin? Doesn’t he sing that song?

WHEN USED IN FRONT OF A VOWEL:

“An” causes no change to the vowel:

An osclóidh sí an doras? Will she open the door?

“Nach” prefixes “n-“ to the vowel:

Nach n-osclóidh sí an doras? Won’t she open the door?

WHEN USED WITH A NON-ECLIPSABLE CONSONANT, NEITHER ‘AN’ NOR ‘NACH’ CAUSES A MUTATION:

An ritheann an madadh? Does the dog run?

Nach ritheann tú gach maidin? Don’t you run every morning?

PAST TENSE

Past tense verbs use a different set of interrogative particles: “Ar” and “Nár.” Both cause lenition, if possible:

Ar chan sé an t-amhrán sin? Did he sing that song?

Nár chan sé an t-amhrán sin? Didn’t he sing that song?

“Ar” and “Nár” do not cause changes to following vowels. The “d’” prefix, however, disappears:

Ar oscail sí an doras? Did she open the door?

Nár ól siad an bainne? Didn’t they drink the milk?


ANSWERING QUESTIONS

As you probably already know, Irish does not have words for “yes” and “no.” Instead, you answer a question positively by restating the verb you just heard, minus any particles, mutations or pronouns:

An gcanfaidh sé an t-amhrán sin? Will he sing that song?

Canfaidh: Yes (literally “will sing”).

To answer a question negatively, you use the negative form of the verb…in other words, “ní + verb.” Remember, “ní” causes lenition, if possible:

An gcanfaidh sé an t-amhrán sin? Will he sing that song?

Ní chanfaidh: No (literally “won’t sing”).

If the verb is in the past tense, the negative particle is “níor”:

Ar chan sé an t-amhrán sin? Did he sing that song?

Níor chan: No (literally “didn’t sing”)

If the verb is in the present tense first person singular, you may use either the “synthetic” form (the form that combines the verb with the pronoun) or the regular form (with no pronoun):

An gcanann tú an t-amhrán sin?
Do you sing that song?

Canaim OR Canann: Yes.

Ní chanaim OR Ní chanann: No.

EXERCISE

Read the following sentences aloud. Translate them to English. Then answer them in Irish:

An ólann tú tae?

Nach gcanfaidh an múinteoir amhrán duinn?

Nach bhfanfaidh sibh ag an staisiún?

Ar cheannaigh sé nuachtán dom?

Nár chodail George Washington san leaba seo?


IMPERATIVE FORMS

As you learned last week, the singular imperative form of any verb is the same as its “root form”: the form of the verb you look up in the dictionary:

Éirigh suas! Get up!

Oscail an doras! Open the door!

Rith trasna an droichid! Run across the bridge!

TO FORM A PLURAL IMPERATIVE (I.E., ADDRESSED TO MULTIPLE PEOPLE):

First conjugation verbs: Add “-aigí” or “-igí” to the verb stem:

Canaigí an t-amhrán! Sing the song!

Rithigí trasna an droichid! Run across the bridge!

Second conjugation verbs that end in -igh: Remove the –igh and add –ígí to the verb stem:

Éirígí suas! Get up!

Second conjugation verbs that end in –aigh: remove the –igh and add –igí:

Ceannaigí an leabhar seo! Buy this book!

Other second conjugation verbs: syncopate by dropping the unstressed vowel sound in front of the final consonant, then add –aígí:

Osclaígí na doirse! Open the doors

Codlaígí! Go to sleep!

(Some of these syncopated words will retain a vowel sound, called a “helping vowel,” or guta cúnta,even though the vowel has technically been removed. For example, “codlaígí” is pronounced “KUD-uh-LEE-gee.”)

EXERCISE: DEIREANN Ó GRADA

In English, we play “Simon Says.” In Irish, the equivalent game is “Deireann Ó Gráda”: (O’Grady Says).

The rules are the same. One person is “O’Grady.” That person gives “orders” to the class. If “O’Grady” prefixes his or her “order” with “Deireann Ó Gráda,” the class must follow his or her directions. For example, if he or she says “Deireann Ó Gráda seasaigí suas” (“O’Grady says stand up”), everybody must stand up.

If, however, “O’Grady” leaves out the “Deireann Ó Gráda” part and just says “seasaigí suas” (stand up), the class must NOT follow his or her direction.

“O’Grady” may also choose to single out a particular person for an order.

When a person in the class gets it wrong (either disobeying when he/she should obey, or vice versa), that person is “out.” The last person left playing is the next “O’Grady.”

Below are some orders “O’Grady” can give:

Seas suas/seasaigí suas: Stand up

Suigh síos/Suígí síos: Sit down

Cas/casaigí timpeall: Turn around

Stad/stadaigí: Stop

Buail/buailigí bós: Clap hands

Léim/léimigí thart: Jump around

Seas/seasaigí ar chos amháin: Stand on one foot

Déan/déanaigí gáire:
Laugh

Caoin/caoinigí:
Cry

Cuir do lámha/cuirigí bhur lámha in airde: Put your hands up

Cuir do lámha/cuirigí bhur lámha síos: Put your hands down.

Fead/Feadaigí (mas féidir leat/libh!):
Whistle (if you can!)

Cuir lámh ar do cheann/cuirigí lámh ar bhur gceann: Put a hand on your head

Cuir lámh ar do ghluin/cuirigí lámh ar bhur ngluin:
Put a hand on your knee

Slíoc do cheann/slíocaigí bhur gceann: Pat your head

Slíoc do bholg/slíocaigí bhur mbolg:
Pat your belly

_________________
...agus déanfaidh mé do mholadh ar an gcruit a Dhia, a Dhia liom!


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