Colloquial Welsh

Hi everyone, I’m new to this so sorry if I’m doing anything wrong :sweat_smile:

I’ve been learning Welsh for a while now and my main source is the TV series Pobol y Cwm.

While listening to how people (mainly from the south) speak in day to day life, I’ve found a few things that confuse me:

Words that they use:

  • In dictionaries and translators, the word ‘to cook’ is coginio, but I hear people say something like cocan instead? Am I hearing this right, and is it just a colloquial South Wales word?

  • In the English subtitles it’s subtitled as ‘ruin’ and ‘spoil’, and I hear the word as strwyio but I can’t seem to find it anywhere. (I’m guessing it’s just a short pronunciation of saying ’

  • Busy = prysur , but I always use the south’s busi however I can’t seem to find any record of this word being used online?

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You are spot on, the forms you are hearing are very common southern variations in colloquial speech. So instead of coginio you’ll hear cwco/cwcan, and instead of dinistrio you get strywo.
I haven’t seen/heard “busi”, the southern variant for prysur that I usually come across is fishi (ETA: yes, of course, the unmutated form is bishi)

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bishi - yn fishi.

Thank you! I was kinda confused if I was hearing it right so thanks for clarifying.

And yea yn fishi is what I heard, I assumed it’s unmutated form would be bishi, I was just unsure how to spell it :joy:

It always feels like cheating for saying the Welsh that’s in the dictionary, I guess like English the language changes and it’s interesting

There’s an out-of-print book that can sometimes be picked up second hand that gives a good overview of the southernisms often heard on P-y-C.


Another very useful book is Dweud Eich Dweud: A guide to Colloquial and Idiomatic Welsh by Ceri Jones which is luckily still in print