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Lesson by "The Irish People"
aitheantais (A-huhn-tish); recognition drill
níos moiche maidin amárach, dá mbeadh orm bheith
ag obair. (deye-ROH-in; MWI-he).
d'airgead, mura gcuirfeá in áit shábháilte
go bhfreagróidh sé an cheist tar éis an chruinniú.
Beidh an leanbh
ina luí roimh a sé a chlog.
an bia amuigh sa chistin?
Is é sin
an cárta a chaill mé anuraidh.
would get up earlier tomorrow morning if I had to be at work. Your
money would be stolen if you didn't put it in a safe place. He says
that he will answer the question after the meeting. The child will
be in bed before six o'clock. Isn't the food prepared out in the kitchen?
That's the card I lost last year.
In English, there
is a readily understood difference between "I closed the window"
and "I used to close the window". The former sentence indicates
a single specific action. The latter sentence tells us that there
was a series of closings over a time span - the closings were repeated
In English, some
other verb must precede "close" to tell the listener that
the action was repeated or habitual. "Used to" or "wont
to" are two of these auxiliary verbs.
In Irish, on the
other hand, each verb has its own forms to express the "past
habitual" or gnáthchaite (gnaw*-K*AH-tye). These forms
resemble an modh coinníollach, so care is necessary in pronouncing
them and understanding them in speech.
Read this series
over carefully, picturing the action and who is doing it in each sentence:
(YEEL-in), I used to sell
(YEEL-taw*), you used to sell
sé (YEEL-UHK* shay), he used to sell
sí, she used to sell
(YEEL-i-mish), we used to sell
sibh (shiv), you-all used to sell
(YEEL-i-deesh), they used to sell
(YEEL-tee), it used to be sold, people used to sell it
The negative forms
for this begin with:
I didn't used to sell
the forms begin with:
(un neel-in), did I used to sell? and for the negative question: nach
ndíolainn? (nahk* neel-in), didn't I used to sell?
yourself with this tense, say aloud all 32 forms for each of these
verbs: déan, do; and las, light. Note that déan, although
irregular in many tenses, is regular in the past habitual.
The first and
eighth forms for each are: dhéanainn (YAY*N-in), dhéantaí
(YAY*N-tee); lasainn (LAHS-in), lastaí (LAHS-tee).
and las all end in a broad consonant. If a verb ends in a slender
consonant, the spelling and pronunciation of the final syllable can
change slightly. An example:
I used to put, chuirteá, chuireadh sé, chuireadh sí,
chuirimis, chuireadh sibh, chuiridís, chuirtí.
If the verb begins
with a vowel or an "f", then "d'" preceded the
(DOH-lin), d'óltá ; ending with d'óltaí,
people used to drink.
(DAY*SH-tin), d'éisteá ; ending with d'éistí,
people used to listen.
d'fhantá ; ending with d'fhantaí, people used to wait.
If the verb begins
with a vowel, the negative question in the past habitual begins with
"nach n_ ", as in :
(nahk* NOH-lin), didn't I used to drink? , and ending with nach n-óltaí?
nach n-éisteá? , and ending with nach n-éistí,
didn't people used to listen.
Irish sentences have either the past habitual or the conditional form
of the verb. Picture in your mind whether the action actually used
to occur in the past or is only an imagined condition.
sé trasna an chlóis. Chloisfinn é. Mholaimis
na leanaí (LAN-ee). Dhoirtidís an bainne amach. Chrochadh
sí a cóta suas. Chnagfainn (K*NAHK-hin) ar an doras.
Dhúntaí an geata ar a deich a chlog. D'ólfá
é. Ní cheapaimis é sin. Mhúintí
anseo é sin. Nach mbrisfí é?
used to jump across the yard. I would hear him. We used to praise
the children. They used to pour out the milk. She used to hang up
her coat. I would knock on the door. The gate used to be closed at
ten o'clock. You would drink it. We didn't used to think that. That
used to be taught here. Wouldn't it be broken?
Here are more
electric. Solas leictreach; electric light.
extra. Cóip bhreise, an extra copy; ceann breise, an extra
tais (tash), damp.
Seomra tais, a damp room; urláir thaise, damp floors.
(AW*-vwuhr-ahk*), lucky. Daoine ámharacha, lucky persons.
(mee-AW*-vwuhr-ahk*), unlucky. Capall mí-ámharach, an
narrow. Bóithre cúnga, narrow roads.
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