Ag seinm uirlisí ceoil, ó alpchorn go xileafón (Alpenhorn to Xylophone in Irish, Pt.2): ideafón go  hócairín

Posted on 21. Mar, 2015 by in Irish Language

(le Róislín)

Cén uirlis cheoil atá á déanamh sa phictiúr seo?  Ar sheinn tú riamh an uirlis cheoil seo?  (fearann poibli:   http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Giuseppe_Donati_and_one_of_his_ocarinas.gif, Aaron Walden a d'uaslódáil)

Cén uirlis cheoil atá á déanamh sa phictiúr seo? Ar sheinn tú riamh an uirlis cheoil seo? (fearann poibli: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Giuseppe_Donati_and_one_of_his_ocarinas.gif, Aaron Walden a d’uaslódáil)

In the last blog we looked at musical instruments from “a” (alpenhorn) to “h” (heckelphone) as part of a series on naming instruments AND saying someone is playing them.  And yes, we did a couple more widely played instruments, like “an consairtín” and “na drumaí,” not just some of the less usual ones.

Why the big “AND”?  Remember, Irish has different ending and changes that occur when you say “I’m playing the guitar” (Tá mé ag seinm an ghiotáir) as opposed to “Here’s the guitar” (Seo é an giotár).  When spelled “ghiotáir,” the word is pronounced “yit-AWRzh” and when it’s in its root form, it’s, predictably, “git-AWR.” In more technical terms, “giotár” changes to the genitive-case form when you’re saying someone is “at the guitar’s playing,” to give it a literal translation.

So for today’s blog we’ll continue in sequence, starting with idiophones and ending with the ocarina.  As before, I’ll fill in every other line for the genitive forms, and leave blanks for you to fill in for the others.

(1-8 sa bhlag ar 19 Márta 2015)

9) ideafón: Tá mé ag seinm an ideafóin.  I’m playing the idiophone.  OK, it’s not your everyday statement, and would probably come up mostly if you were contrasting the categories of instruments being played in an ensemble, like na gaothuirlisí adhmaid, na téaduirlisí, na cnaguirlisí agus na huirlisí práis.

Can you think of some idiophones?  Seo cúpla cineál a bhuailtear (ideafóin bhuailte): triantán, cloganna.  Agus cúpla cineál a stoitear (ideafóin stoite): trumpa béil, dan moi (uirlis Vítneamach, focal ar fhocal: “liúit liopa”).  Cineál amháin a shéidtear: aeolsklavier (níl Gaeilge air, sílim) agus ní fheicim ceann ar bith eile.   Agus cúpla ceann a sheinntear le frithchuimilt: armónach gloine, caschlár.

And by the way, note the spelling in English: i-d-i-o-phone (idio- own, peculiar, proper to one + -phone, i.e. for music, naturally sonorous) and in Irish i-d-e-a-fón.  If you Google the term, you might get led down the garden path, like I was briefly, by lots of hits for Lenovo’s “IdeaPhones,” a type of smartphone.  The Irish “idea-” prefix is a gaelicization of “idio-,” also found in a handful of other words, like “ideapatach” (fibriliú ideapatach méadailíneach) and “ideamorfach” (criostal ideamorfach).

OK, back to the list.  I didn’t really plan for one entry to dominate the list, but the tricky thing is that there aren’t many instruments beginning with “i” in Irish, so I went with the group term “idiophone” instead.

And now, your turn, noting that there are no typical instruments starting with “j” in Irish.  The letter “j” is pretty rare in Irish, mostly limited to loan words like “jib,” “jíp,” and “júdó.”

The letter “k” is even less typical in Irish, mostly reserved for the abbreviation “km” (the abbreviation for “ciliméadar” — using “cm” would be confused with “ceintiméadar“).

Sure, we could say, “Tá mé ag seinm an janggo” (uirlis Chóiréach) or “Tá mé ag seinm an kakko” (uirlis Sheapánach), but that wouldn’t really give us much Irish practice.  So, moving right along …

10)  liúit: Tá mé ag seinm na ___________ (NB: inscne — baininscneach, so no lenition but what happens to the end of the word?)

Mo shealsa

Mórorgán Wanamaker i bhFilideilfia (Nikita52389 at en.wikipedia [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons)

Mórorgán Wanamaker i bhFilideilfia (Nikita52389 at en.wikipedia [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons)

11) mórorgán: Tá Peter Richard Conte ag seinm an mhórorgáin sa Grand Court (“an t-orgán Wanamaker” sa siopa ilrannach Macy’s i bhFilideilfia; ba é Wanamaker’s an t-ainm a bhí ar an siopa go dtí 1995/2012 (“Hecht’s” agus ansin “Macy’s”).  Fad m’eolais, is é an t-orgán is mó ar domhan é de réir ranganna (“ranks”) agus de réir meáchain (287 tona).

Do sheal anois

12) nóvachorda: Tá mé ag seinm an ______.  (NB: 4th-declension noun, starting with “n,” so is there really any change?  Do bharúil?)

13) ócairín: An maith leat a bheith ag seinm an ócairín?  (NB: also 4th-declension, starting with a vowel, so, creid nó ná creid é, níl athrú ar bith ann; in other words, the word stays as “ócairín“).  Dála an scéil, sin an uirlis atá sa phictiúr ag barr an bhlag seo.  Tuilleadh eolais faoin bhfear ag http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giuseppe_Donati.

Bhuel, that’s another five instruments (cúig uirlis), seven (seacht gcinn) if you count the “j” and “k” ones.  And relatively few changes this time around.  Bhí an t-ádh orainn, nach raibh?  SGF – Róislín

Freagraí

10) liúit: Tá mé ag seinm na liúite.  The word “liúit” is feminine, and second-declension, so it gets “-e” added here.  No change in spelling to the initial “l.”

12) Tá mé ag seinm an nóvachorda.  No changes!

Ag seinm uirlisí ceoil, ó alpchorn go xileafón (Alpenhorn to Xylophone in Irish, pt. 1)

Posted on 19. Mar, 2015 by in Irish Language

(le Róislín)

Uirlisí ceoil ón alpchorn go dtí an xileafón.  And, just for good, ermm, measure (“líne“) here, we’ll nudge them into the “tuiseal ginideach,” so we can say “playing the alpenhorn” or “playing the xylophone.”  And why do we need “an tuiseal ginideach“?  And what is it, anyway?

We saw a bit of it in the last blog, which discussed the shamrocks playing musical instruments in Google’s St. Patrick’s Day “Doodle” for 2015.

An tuiseal ginideach” is the genitive-case form of a noun in Irish, typically used for purposes like the following:

a) to show possession of something (“carr Sheáin,” with “Sheáin” as opposed to just “Seán“)

b) to further describe another noun (“gloine beorach,” with “beorach” as opposed to “beoir,” or “teach feirme,” with “feirme” as opposed to “feirm“), and,

c) to indicate that someone is in the process of doing an action (“ag scríobh na litreach,” with “litreach” as opposed to “litir,” or “ag seinm an ghiotáir,” with “ghiotáir” as opposed to “giotár“)

That last example will pave the way for the rest of our discussion, playing the alpenhorn and playing the xylophone, and various other instruments in between.

So shall I go ahead an put them all in the genitive?  Or should I leave it up to you?  Or maybe half and half.  Yeah, 20-some genitive-case fill-in-the-blanks is a lot to do in a row.  So I’ll complete every other phrase and leave the rest to be filled in.

Oh, and don’t forget our old friend lenition, which will apply in about half the examples here.

So much for the cúlra — rollaimis!

1) alpchorn: Tá Ruedi ag seinm an alpchoirn.

Do sheal anois!

2) basún: Tá Karen Geoghegan ag seinm an _______________. Hmm, I always love the opportunity to use the surname Geoghegan (Mac Eochagáin OR Ní Eochagáin , in Irish) — the anglicized spelling used to mystify me.

3) consairtín: Tá Noel Hill ag seinm an chonsairtín.  Fourth-declension noun, no separate ending for the genitive case.

Do sheal arís!

4) drumaí: Tá Mickey Hart ag seinm na ______________.  Ooohh, throwing you for a loop there, perhaps.  We typically refer to playing the drums (plural), so there’s no lenition but instead we have ________ (cén t-athrú?)

5) eofón: Bhíodh Alfred James Phasey (1834-1888) ag seinm an eofóin.  Alfred James Phasey?  Cérbh eisean?  Seinnteoir ofaicléide a bhí ann freisin, if that helps!

Agus do shealsa!

6) fidil: Bhí an tseamróg ag seinm na _____________ sa Doodle a bhí ag Google ar 17 Márta 2015. Remember, feminine singular here, so no lenition.

7) glocainspíl: Bíonn Marina Lambrini Diamandis ag seinm na glocainspíle ó am go ham ach seinneann sí an pianó, uirlisí méarchláir, an t-orgán, an Casio VL-Tone, agus an ucailéile freisin. Something tells me she probably plays the keyboards more than the glockenspiel, but it certainly sounds like a nice touch. Agus dála an scéil, cá as ise?  As an mBreatain Bheag í.  Is Gréagach é a hathair agus mar sin tá sloinne Gréagach uirthi.

Do shealsa uair amháin eile.  Agus buíochas le Dia, tá uirlis cheoil amháin ann (agus gan ach ceann amháin, fad m’eolais) a thosaíonn leis an litir “h” (litir eile atá neamhchoitianta mar thúslitir i nGaeilge)

8) heicealfón: Bhí seisear heicealfónaithe ag seinm a __________ ag an gcéad chruinniú den North American Heckelphone Society a bhí i Riverside Church i gCathair Nua-Eabhrac ar an 6ú lá de Lúnasa, 2001. An raibh duine ar bith agaibh ann?  And did you watch out for the genitive plural here — it’s not the “-óin” ending that you may have been getting accustomed to.

Yeah, I really wanted to simply have Heckle and maybe his sidekick Jeckle playing the heckelphone, but I figured I’d give due credit to the hecklephonists for forming their society.  Also I’m not really sure how well suited goba Heckle agus Jeckle are for playing any gaothuirlisí adhmaid.  But just for good …. there it is again … measure, oh let’s go ahead:

Tá Heckle ag seinm a _______________.

Tá Jeckle ag seinm a _______________ seisean.  The “seisean” is added to make sure Heckle doesn’t play Jeckle’s heckelphone and that Jeckle doesn’t play Heckle’s heckelphone.

And I suppose, while we’re at it, we may as well have “An Dochtúir Jekyll ag seinm a ___________ seisean freisin.”  The doctor would probably be considerate enough gan a bheith ag seinm heicealfón Heckle agus gan a bheith ag seinm heicealfón Jeckle.  Why no genitive-case ending there?  Because the heckelphones are followed by  proper nouns (the names Heckle and Jeckle), which cancel out the genitive.

Of course, if we were really pronouncing “Jekyll” in the original Scottish way, it would be more like “JEEK-il” (ceart, a Albanachaí?), as with Stevenson’s real-life source for the name, Walter Jekyll, and Walter’s equally famous sister, Gertrude Jekyll, an saineolaí gairneoireachta (gortóireachta).  So there wouldn’t be that much point in pursuing the Jekylls playing heckelphones, but for the literary character, apparently “Jekyll” with a short “e” (like “Jeckle”) has become the normal pronunciation.

And I really should have mentioned Johann Adam Heckel (1812-77). who invented the instrument.  Tá súil agam nach mbeidh sibh ag déanamh trasnála orm mar gheall ar an dearmaid.  His company is still going strong, as “Wilhelm Heckel GmbH” in Wiesbaden, sa Ghearmáin.

Well, we’re almost halfway done but I think it’s time to wrap up this blog and wait for an chéad bhlag eile to finish up the list.  Having fun yet?  SGF – Róislín

Freagraí

2) basún: Tá Karen Geoghegan ag seinm an _bhasúin_.

4) drumaí: Tá Mickey Hart ag seinm na _ndrumaí_.   … there’s no lenition but instead we have _urú_ (cén t-athrú?)

6) fidil: Bhí an tseamróg ag seinm na _fidle_ sa Doodle a bhí ag Google ar 17 Márta 2015

8) heicealfón: Bhí seisear heicealfónaithe ag seinm a _heicealfón_ ag an gcéad chruinniú den North American Heckelphone Society a bhí i Riverside Church i gCathair Nua-Eabhrac ar an 6ú lá de Lúnasa, 2001.  That assumes one heckelphone per heckelphonist, so “heicealfón” is plural here.

Tá Heckle ag seinm a _heicealfóin_.

Tá Jeckle ag seinm a _heicealfóin_  seisean.

Tá an Dochtúir Jekyll ag seinm a _heicealfóin _ seisean freisin.

Seamróga ag Seinm — Google’s Musical Shamrocks for St. Patrick’s Day

Posted on 17. Mar, 2015 by in Irish Language

seamróg ina gnáthghnáthóg .i. seamróg nach bhfuil ag seinm uirlis cheoil agus nach bhfuil bróga uirthi agus nach bhfuil ag damhsa!  Just ina luí ar an talamh atá sí! (pictiúr le supportstorm ag  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Trifolium_repens_Leaf_April_2,_2010.jpg)

seamróg ina gnáthghnáthóg .i. seamróg nach bhfuil ag seinm uirlis cheoil agus nach bhfuil bróga uirthi agus nach bhfuil ag damhsa! Just ina luí ar an talamh atá sí! (pictiúr le supportstorm ag http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Trifolium_repens_Leaf_April_2,_2010.jpg)

(le Róislín)

Often when I see Google’s imaginative “Doodles,” I want to drop everything and write a blog about them in Irish.  But somehow I never quite got around to it before.

But the seamróga in today’s Doodle seem to be a natural for some Irish vocab practice.   And just to make it a little more of a challenge, we’ll present the words as a fill-in-the-missing-letters challenge.

If you’re looking at the Doodle on your computer screen, from your left to your right (freagraí thíos):

  1. Tá an  __seamróg is  __ó ag seinm na fi__le.
  2. Tá dhá  s__eamróg eile ag damhsa. Or, hmmm, if they’re antrapamorfach, should we use “beirt“?
  3. an ceathr__  seamróg ag seinm an  __hodhráin le  __ipín.
  4. an cúigi­­__  seamróg ag seinm an  __hain__eó.
  5. Tá an  __seamróg is l__  ag bualadh a bos. That’s somehow assuming the shamrock is female. The word is grammatically feminine (baininscneach), so it seems a reasonable choice.  But, le haghaidh an dúshláin, let’s do a masculine version: Tá an  __seamróg is l__  ag bualadh a b__os.

Now let’s look at the vocab, and then why some of words undergo the changes they do.

ag seinm [SHEN-yim], playing (for musical instrument, not sports)

an fhidil [un IDJ-il], the fiddle

bainseó [BAN-shoh], banjo

beag, small, and that’s just a clue here, since we don’t have the actual word “beag” in our text.  Instead we have the phrase “is l__,” meaning “smallest”

beirt, two (for counting people)

bodhrán, bodhrán (hand-held Irish drum)

bos, palm (of hand), also “of palms”; “ag bualadh a bos,” clapping her hands, lit. hitting (of) her palms

bualadh [BOO-uh-luh], hitting, striking, here “clapping”

dhá, two

ceathrú [KYAH-hroo], fourth

cipín, usually means “a match” (for lighting fires), but here, the best English translation would be ______ (freagra thíos)

cúigiú, fifth

mór, big, and that’s just a clue here, since we don’t have the actual word “mór” in our text.  Instead we have the phrase “is m__,” meaning “biggest”

seamróg, a shamrock

Now I have to check and see if there’s an archive (cártlann) of the Google Doodles.  Seems to me I saw something like that once but now I’ll have to track it down again.  An bhfuil eolas ag duine ar bith?  An féidir breathnú ar na Doodles a bhí ann cheana? 

“Whack fal the di do, diddle i day,” or should that be “toora-loora-loora”?  Or “didtherum doo, didtherum doo, didtherum doo-da-dee?” Róislín

Freagraí:

  1. Tá an tseamróg is mó ag seinm na fidle. The biggest shamrock is playing the fiddle. (NB: “t” prefixed because “seamróg” is singular and starts with “s” followed by a vowel; is mó, lit. which is biggest; na fidle, genitive case for “at playing of fiddle”)
  2. Tá dhá sheamróg eile ag damhsa. Two other shamrocks are dancing. (NB: lenition after “dhá,” so “seamróg” becomes “sheamróg“)
  3. Tá an ceathrú seamróg ag seinm an bhodhráin le cipín. The fourth shamrock is playing the bodhrán with a tipper. (NB: lenition in the phrase “at playing of,” plus the genitive ending, with “i” inserted, so “bodhrán” becomes “bhodhráin“).
  4. Tá an cúigi­ú seamróg ag seinm an bhainseó. The fifth shamrock is playing the banjo. (NB: lenition of bainseó, so it becomes “bhainseó“)

5a. The feminine version: Tá an tseamróg is lú ag bualadh a bos.  b. The masculine version: Tá an tseamróg is lú ag bualadh a bhos.  a. The shamrock is clapping its (her) hands  b. The shamrock is clapping its (his palms).  In the b. version, the word “seamróg” remains grammatically feminine, but since we’re going anthropomorphic, we can at least practice the phrase as if it were “his hands” (really, his “palms”).

beag, small; “is lú,” smallest

mór, big; “is mó,” biggest

cipín, tipper (the stick used to play the bodhrán)