Cymraeg v Cymreig

Hi folks, I’m reading a ‘stori sydyn’ by Sian James (O’r llinell biced) and I’ve been stumped by the following sentence: ‘A phentre Cymraeg oedd e, cofiwch, nid Cymreig.’ Can you explain this sentence and the difference between Cymraeg and Cymreig please? Diolch.

Cymraeg is Welsh as in the language, so pentre Cymraeg is a village where Welsh is spoken. Cymreig is Welsh as in ‘attribute’ - a pentre Cymreig is a village which is Welsh but where Welsh is not the primary language.

The sentence is saying that the village wasn’t just Welsh, it was where Welsh was spoken.


That’s brilliant. Diolch yn fawr iawn Siaron.


Not necessarily so. In the South Cymreig is used to denote Welshness, i.e. being Welsh.
Many people, including Welsh speakers, mistakenly take Cymraeg to mean Welsh, as in being Welsh, in addition to its one and only true definition, i.e. the native language of the Welsh (collectively Y Cymry or individually and without reference to gender, Cymreig)
Don’t believe everything you read on Wiki.
Down here in the south, to Welsh speakers, a Welsh village is pentre Cymreig by virtue of it being a village in Wales, whether or not Welsh is the village’s primary language. It is never pentre Cymraeg and if Cymraeg is so used it is a very loose and careless colloquial usage since Cymraeg is meant to refer exclusively to the Welsh language. By definition, in the Welsh language, a Welsh village will always be pentre Cymreig.
Cymreig is a handy collective adjective and noun which denotes being Welsh without the difficulties of referring to gender, as with Cymraes and Cymro when the reference is meant to collectively denote people of both genders.
As the English can collectively refer to themselves as the English and as individuals of either gender can refer to themselves as English, so the Welsh can collectively refer to themselves as Y Cymry or individually and of either gender (or none in these days) as Cymreig.

Malcolm, your post is correct, Cymreig can mean pertaining to the Welsh language, but my answer was based on the context of the sentence Chris enquired about in his original post.

However, you are wrong to assume I get my information from Wiki - I studied Welsh at degree level in Aberystwyth and live and work in a Welsh speaking environment in Caernarfon, though I’m originally from South Wales. :slight_smile: