Irish Language Blog

Ó Abair An Léir Dhuit, Véarsa 4: Oh, Say Can You See, 4th (and final) verse (Amhrán Náisiúnta na Stát Aontaithe) Posted by on Jun 27, 2012 in Irish Language

(le Róislín)

The Irish expression for “to leave no stone unturned” is reasonably apropos here.  In Irish, it’s  not actually expressed as a negative injunction (“don’t leave it unturned”) but rather as a positive instruction (“turn” it, or more literally “search it”)   The phrase is “dóigh agus andóigh a chuardach,” literally “to search every likely place and (every) unlikely place.”

Andóigh” [AHN-DOH-ee] is an interesting word, meaning an “improbability” or an “unlikely place.”  The prefix “an-” causes negation of the word “dóigh” (likely thing, likelihood) and is one of several negating prefixes in Irish (cf. mí-, as in “mícheart,” and “do-,” as in “dofheicthe“).

This “dóigh” is not the same “dóigh” that means “way” or “manner;” nor is it the verb “dóigh,” which means “burn.”

The bottom line, for this figurative expression?  The Irish version doesn’t involve turning stones over, just the idea of being thorough. What does all this have to do with the text of “An Bhratach Gheal-Réaltach”?  Well, I’m trying to be thorough, to leave no stone unturned, and to leave no verse unglossed.

So, although it may not be all that widely sung, seo dhaoibh véarsa a ceathair den amhrán “An Bhratach Gheal-Réaltach” and a gluais.

As a reminder, this pronunciation guide really is meant for singers, and a few sounds have either been stretched out or condensed, to fit the meter, for example: d’Athair Bua is Síth’ [do-uh AH-hirzh BOO-uss shee]

Gaeilge agus Treoir Fhuaimnithe Aistriúchán Focal ar Fhocal (NB: very literal!) agus faoi sin, an gnáth-théacs i mBéarla
An Bhratach Gheal-Réaltach, Véarsa 4 The Star-Spangled Banner, Verse 4
Mini-Guide to the Transcription System: a) “rzh” like the “r” in English “tree;” b) “le” like “let,” not like French “le;” c) “kh” like German “Buch,” Welsh “bach,” Scottish “Loch;” this sound isn’t in std. English; d) “uh” like the “u” in “putt,” not like “put” or German “Huhn;” e) “oo” like English “fool” or “cool;” f) “hy” like English “human,” “hew,” or “hue,” NOT like “hydrogen” or Welsh “hylo;” g) “dh” please see the June 18, 2012 blog
1a  Gurab amhlaidh go brách,                                  [GUR-ub OW-lee guh brawkh]  May it be thus forever                                       (Oh! thus be it ever)
1b  nuair a sheasfaidh na laoich                           [NOO-irzh uh HASS-hee nuh lee-ih]  When the heroes stand                               (When freemen shall stand)
2a  Idir slua na namhad                                             [idj-irzh SLOO-uh nuh NAW-ud]  Between the host of the enemy                (Between their loved home)
2b  is áras a gcloinne,                                             [iss AWR-uss uh GLIN-yuh]  And the building (house) of their family               (and the war’s desolation)
3a  ‘S go raibh altú is glóir                                 [sguh ruh AL-too iss gloh-irzh]  And may there be praise and glory                (Blest with victory and peace)
3b  d’Athair Bua is Síth’                                               [do-uh AH-hirzh BOO-uss shee]  To Father [of?] Victory and Peace                   (may the heav’n rescued land)
4a  Thug dúiche Uaidh féin                               [hug DOO-ih-hyuh OO-ee hayn]  Who gave the territory from Himself             (Praise the Power that hath made)
4b  dúinn go deireadh na cruinne,                     [Doo-n guh DJERzh-uh nuh KRIN-yuh]  To us until the end of the universe                  (and preserved us a nation)
5a  Beidh rath ar an Neart,                                    [bay rah err un nyart]  Prosperity will be on the Strength                 (Then conquer we must,)
5b  mar tá linn-ne an Ceart                               [mahr taw LIN-yuh un kyart]  Because the Right is with us                         (when our cause it is just)
6a  Is tá dóchas ár gcroí                                              [iss taw DOH-khuss awr gree]  And the hope of our heart (is)                        (And this be our motto:)
6b  ar Dhia na bhFeart,                                           [eh-err YEE-uh nuh vyart]  Is on God of the Miracles (almighty God)          (“In God is our trust.”)
7a  ‘S beidh an bhratach gheal-réaltach                [sbay un VRAH-tukh YA-AL-RAYL-tukh]  And the star-spangled banner will be              (And the star-spangled banner)
7b  go buach go síor                                               [guh BOO-OO-uh-ukh guh shee-ur]  Victoriously eternally                                             (in triumph doth wave)
8a  Os cionn thír na gcrógach                            [us kyun HEE-IRzh nuh groh-GUKH]  O’er the country of the brave                              (O’er the land of the free)
8b  is talamh na saor!                                              [ih-iss TAL-uv nuh seer]  And the land of the free!                                     (And the home of the brave!)

Gluais  (only the words that weren’t glossed in the previous three blogs)

1 Altú Thanks, thanking 17 Go brách Forever
2 Amhlaidh Thus 18 Go deireadh Till (the) end
3 Ár Our 19 Gurab May it be
4 Beidh Will be 20 Idir Between
5 Bua victory 21 Laoch, laoich Hero, heroes
6 Ceart Right (noun or adj.) 22 Linn-ne With us
7 Clann; a gcloinne Family; of their family (old spelling with “o”) 23 Mar  because
8 Cruinne Universe 24 Namhaid, na namhad Enemy; of the ene-my(-ies) (sg. or pl.)
9 d’Athair to Father (God) 25 Neart Strength
10 Dia God 26 Nuair a When
11 Dóchas Hope 27 Rath Prosperity
12 Dúiche Territory 28 Sheasfaidh Will stand
13 Dúinn To us 29 Síth Peace,
14 F’éin Self, own 30 Thug Gave
15 feart, na bhfeart Miracle, of the miracles 31 Uaidh From him
16 Glóir Glory

Sin agaibh na ceithre véarsa in aistriúchán Uí Ghramhnaigh agus m’aistriúchán focal ar fhocal.  SGF, Róislín

The links for the blogs for véarsaí a haon, a dó, agus a trí, are:

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