Another quick 'what's the origin' one, please!

‘Mae fy nhad i yn moyn rhywbeth i’w fwyta’

I cannot for the life of me work out where that rogue ‘w’ has come from to make i’w.

Could one of you lovely clever people enlighten this very keen Welsh learner?!


Ben :slightly_smiling_face:

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In Welsh, you often get situations where the literal translation is “something for its [insert relevant verbnoun here]” - in this case you have “something for its eating”. Obviously that’s not something you’d say in English, so the actual translation remains “something to eat”. The reason the 'w is there is because to say “something for its eating”, you’d need a “for”, i, and an “its”, ei, but the rule is you never put an ei after a preposition, so the ei turns into a 'w, and “for its” becomes i’w.


So, would "I need someone to write about it also have the i’w? Dw i’n angen rhywun i’w ysgrifennu amdani?
Diolch yn fawr!

No, your sentence would be correct without the “i’w”. This construction only appears if the object of the verb is mentioned before the verb, but in your case rhywun is the subject, not the object. Expanding on your idea you could say
I have an idea for a book, but I need someone to write it – here the object (the book) is mentioned before, so you’d get
Mae gyda fi syniad am lyfr, ond dw i angen rhywun i’w ysgrifennu.


Danke! Diolch yn fawr. I so like all your and Siaron’s clear explanations.