From Brittany with love!

Deiz mat (in breton), or better said “noz vat” (it’s dark now).
This post is above all to introduce, and explain why I decided to go and see the SSIW community. I “paste” here the text of my profile, and hope somebody will be interested with my request. Thankyou, which in breton would be “trugarezh”

So, here is my profile : Breton speaker (but not “fluent” anymore I’m afraid) I love, when listenig to welsh songs, recognize words, similar to breton (a lot). And not only in songs :Breton speakers fans of Dr Who may recognize our breton words “bleiz droug” in the welsh words “bleidd drwg” - bad wolf- mentioned in the serie:slight_smile:
I’m 65, living unfortunately out of Brittany (but not so far from) since 2004, but I deeply hope I’ll return there later on.
The reason why I contact this site (and let you read my old fashioned english, learnt more than 50 years ago, and not so often practiced) is not, of course, learning welsh (as terrific as breton, I suppose, with a lot of changes at the beginning of the words, depending of the word before, or the gender, or the number :grin::worried:), but to exchange with you about our contries, or cultures, our tongues, our musics… with tour tongues in backfround : comparing our words, the way to write, the way to prononce…
I’m maybe not in the right place : if so, please could you tell me where to go ?

What else ?.(apart Nescafé) : now retired, I’ve been a bookseller, a teacher, an adverts writer, well, various things. I love rugby, even if most of the rules are still a mystery for me after decades and decades. I especially love VI nations (more than world cup), I love to hear Hen wlad fy nhadau (we used the same music and words for our “national” anthem :" bro gozh ma zadou" = my fathers’s old country). I like listening to languages, knowing about foreign cultures, lovve as well Franz Ferdinand or I’m kloot and others than the Beatles, Jerry Lee Lewis, 50’s and 60’s, or opera singers, or classical… I’m afraid I like everything and their contrary,so it uneasy for me to speak about myself.
And so I’ld better stop NOW !!!


Croeso (welcome) on the forum.
I’m afraid I’m not the right person for your requests, because I don’t live in Cymru. I’m only learning Welsh from outside.
But there are many people here who live in Cymru, with interest in Welsh music, literature, customs…
And there are quite a many who like to compare and discuss Welsh, Cornish and Breton.
So you are definitely on the right place in a very friendly community.
Welcome again and feel free to ask special questions or post anything you want. (My English is not the best, I learnt it 50 years ago, too)


Degemer mat… :slight_smile:

Hmmm… I’m sure you’ll be welcome here… there is a Cymdeithas Cymru-Llydaw, but I think all their stuff is either in Welsh or in Breton… not sure otherwise… :slight_smile:

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Thankyou very much for your welcome (ha degemer ! :slight_smile: !
Noz vat now (time to leave the computer, otherwise it will trap me once more, till very late through the night !)
How would you say “good night” in cymraeg ? I noticed, in songs, that you say “nos” (we say “noz”) for “night” (a lot a lot a lot of songs with "tawel nos !!!)

And how would you say “thankyou” ? In another post I used the breton word “trugarezh” but young people say “trug” or more often, for “thankyou very much”, they say “mersi bras”, which is a mix between french “merci” and breton “bras” = big)

So… trug ! :slight_smile:


Nos dda = good night.
diolch = thank you
diolch yn fawr iawn = thank you very much
you’re welcome = croeso

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So… diolch Brigitte. And Inow I realise I forgot that regarding to welsh tongue, I forgot the mai request : how to prononce :scream:(:laughing: !!!
When I listen to welsh songs whose I recognize the title when it arrives into the song, I may conclude about the way of pronouncing certain letters, or group of letters (as “dd” for instance) but I often laugh at myself when I compare the way I thought a wiord would be pronounced and the way it is in fact !!! For example in the lullabies, “cysga” is the same as our breton “kousk” (sleep) but if just reading the word, you would say “see’s ga” :laughing: ha ha ha
Well, I suppose it’s the same for english native pepole who learn welsh…
But some are very close to breton : for example when listening to Meredydd Evans singing a love song, I recognise words as “daoulagad” (would you write dawlagaid ???). Maybe also Kalon (heart ?). And in religious songs "bendigaid (we have “bendiget”)

Well, time to go out now, into the snow (erc’h in breton, c’h to be said as spanish J or german Ch) fallen last night.

Have a nice day !

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Deiz mat/ Bore da @mcbrittany
I just wanted to say hello - one of my dear friends is Breton(ne?) also.
I am interested in the shared roots of the Celtic languages. I agree that I recognise more when listening - in songs, especially, as you say - than I do when it is written. When I went on holiday to Brittany some years ago I felt very ‘at home’ with the bilingusl road signs!
Do you also understand the Basque language?

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Croeso i’r Forum! (That’s a mix of Welsh and English!)
C is always ‘hard’ in Welsh, like ‘k’, Cymru is like K um r i
FF = f
F = V
so diolch yn fawr like dee ol ch (like Scottish loch) yn = un fawr = va oo r
Oh dear I think you need someone who knows phonetics, but you do not want to learn Cymraeg (Welsh) despite being on a website specifically produced to teach Cymraeg! You can find how to pronounce Welsh on line I think, but you want a site on culture, customs etc. Did you know what i think is true, that Brittany is actually a colony, accidentally set up when Romano-Brits followed the Roman Legions who pulled out of Britain. They landed in your area and a lot of the British-speaking (i.e. the forerunner of Cymraeg) folk stopped and settled in the first bit of the Roman Empire they reached!

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:smile: oh yes I know about the “colony”, especially explaining why the breton language spoken around Vannes (Gwened in breton) is quite different from the rest of Brittany. Due to this. It was nice to read it the way you tell it, anyway ha ha ha :smile:

Concerning the pronounciation : thanks to you NOT having used real phonetics symbols, I prefer sounds from “real” tongues. You made it clear, thankyou. I know I could have asked on line and surely would have found : Saint G… knows everything :innocent:, He drove me to you :smile: But I prefer ask people through a forum.

To answer your question (or were you just saying it, not really a question) : I don’t want to “learn” welsh. As I told in my first post, being brother (or sister : I don’t know wgat would be the gender of “language” or “tongue” in english) with breton, welsh grammar and “mutations” of 1st letter(s) of the words are, I guess, the same nightmare. to dominate. I got enough with breton. And what I like in a tongue is to speak it like native speakers do it, and this takes years and years. A lot of people here learn breton, well, it’s a good thing, but they speak the language exactly like french : same tonic accent, same way of making sentences, same order of the words and this is not breton at all. It’s a totally artificial breton.
Anyway maybe it would be pleasant to join a summer class but I’m afraid I’m desperatly too individualist (or shy ? or lazy ?) to integrate a group and share activities !
What I’m looking for in your site and forum is just to come from time to time and read (and try to understand through my old fashioned english) some topics also find anwers to questions I could ask about ideas, culture, rugby, everyday life, well, in fact about, “everything and nothing”. Life, I would say, but life with a welsh background.
What I must take care is, at least as well as using the right words, is avoiding “writing faults”, my fingers are used to type french on the keyboard, they got automatisms which are a big problem when I write in another tongue… That’s why, I guess, my post will become shorter and shorter, after being so long on this first topic:sleeping:

I’m now going to copy your “lesson”, the best way to remind !

Hello Mamwlad
(is “wlad” in your name the same "wlad in Hen wlad… welsh anthem ?)

I’m also happy to say hello ! I suppose that if I went to Wales, I would feel the same you felt in travelling thourgh Brittany concerning the bilinguism on the road signs, and names of the streets (in biggest towns)

Unfortunately, I don’t speak basque. Calatan, yes (easier !) Basque (Euskara in their tongue if I remember) is a very special tongue. If I remember well, it is supposed to come from the same old branch as turkish tongues (turkish being itself a very special tongue). But I like to hear euskara. Unfortunately, in France it is much less spoken than in Spain, due to tthe way french centralism killed the other tongues of the country.

Oh la la ! (pure french ! :laughing:) we could speak a long time about those languages which are going to die…

And I see that you also think we “hear” the similitudes between breton and welsh better than we “see” them : The writing : ooooooops ! :rage:


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Mamwlad - yes, @mcbrittany, the “_wlad” is the same as in the anthem - mutation from “gwlad”, which you hear later.
“Mamwlad” mean homeland - although I grew up in England, I consider Wales to be home now. And I like to play with words, so I am a mother “mam” to 3 lads! Oh, and I like marmalade…(“marmalad”)

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Two words that look very different when written are Harz and Aros. I heard someone saying Harz and thought it could have been written aros.

The way things are written can be confusing.

Isn’t Basque/Etruscan very, very ancient? Some of it may have come here and to southern Ireland and Cornwall via trading vessels. Phoenician too maybe? All very pre-Roman. Sorry when I said ‘here’ I meant Wales. I forget sometimes that I am an exile in Scotland (Yr Alban).

Hi, Mamwlad ! I like very much your answer ! About play on words, I love them too, and use them a lot. German linguist Jörn Albrecht says that french tongue is so full of “images” that it allows plenty and plenty and plenty of play on words, it is quasi a natiooal sport !

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To Tofffidil : … … and it can be’ at times quite problematic, if one of those words means something totallly out of what you wanted to say !!:confounded:

Hello Henddraig : well I’m not at all a specialist for euskara (basque tongue), I just read about, and yes it is a “misterious” tongue, whose we just know that it is ancient, and probably same group as turkish agglutinating languages (that’s for the construction of the tongue, not its vocabulay).
But if I look at the famous long long long and all agglutinated words of this famous welsh village name, Llanfair… , I wonder :smile: : would welsh also be an agglutinating language ???

Problem - as far as I know, Llanfairpwll… was a joke played on the English by the locals. When asked for the name of the place, someone gave the longest description they could come up with! Instead of walking away in disgust or naming it ‘Longname’, the full description was taken as its name and became a ‘feature’!!! I never remember it all, although I can read it aloud!! Using that name as evidence for anything is a bit dodgy under the circumstanes, and lots of place names are shorter versions of the same thought of thinking although not jokes!

Speaking as a total outsider, I have a feeling that it was a marketing exercise, and fair doos, it seems to have worked. Anyone on here from Llanfair to confirm?


@JohnYoung @robbruce @henddraig
The well-heeled English used to do a Grand Tour of Europe. From the mid-19th Century, this became hazardous as various nations revolted and/or unified and nationalism was on the rise. So they sought adventure closer to home - Wales, Scotland and Ireland. Thus began the mythology of the ‘noble savage’/Celt.
Anglesey did indeed take advantage with the invention of Llanfairpwll…llantysiliogogogoch, combining the names of two ‘parishes’ (llan) with some embellishments!
Likewise, the owner of The Goat Hotel in a small hamlet on the mountain road from Caernarfon to Porthmadog borrowed from Welsh legend to claim a link with Llŷwelyn as the resting place of his brave hound - Beddgelert.