Gair neu Idiom y Diwrnod - Word or Idiom of the Day

I’m starting this brand new thread where I’m going to post a new Welsh word(s)/idioms/other interesting snippets of language on a daily(ish) basis. I’m going to try and focus on interesting/unusual/lesser known words as well as their pronunciation and meanings.

Discussion on the word of the day is very welcome! I hope you enjoy the thread and I hope it will be of some value. :slight_smile:

The sound files for each word can be found on this SoundCloud account -


Word of the day 09/04/18

Today’s word is inspired by a discussion on Radio Cymru this morning.

Ymlusgiad = erm-lisg-yad - the ‘g’ is as in grow
Ymlusgiaid (pl) = erm-lisg-ya-id - the ‘ya-id’ at the end is one syllable and rhymes with tide

Ymlusgiad means reptile.

Ymlusgiad comes from the word ymlusgo [erm-liss-go] which means to creep/crawl/slither.

I’ve always thought that the ‘Slytherin’ house in Harry Potter should be called ‘Yr Ymlusgiaid’ in the Welsh version. :wink:

Sound file -


I learnt this word just two weeks ago after buying my daughter a new Welsh book. So ‘ymlusgo’ is ‘to drag oneself’, makes perfect sense. :slight_smile:


Love the look of the book what sort of age group is it suitable for?


It doesn’t say on the book but my daughter is 6 and I think it suits her age very well. Information from confirms this …

I bought it from Waterstones in Wrexham but I’m sure smaller local shops would be able to get hold of it. (I had a Waterstones voucher for Christmas to get rid of.)


Slytherin made me think of Silurian - unfortunately chosen as the name of scary reptile aliens in Doctor Who, but the name of probably the most formidable enemies of the Roman empire - proud warriors of South East Wales and certainly not deserving of the link to reptilian aliens.


Indeed not: “… the swarthy faces of the Silures, the curly quality, in general, of their hair, and the position of Spain opposite their shores, attest to the passage of Iberians in old days and the occupation by them of these districts; …” (Tacitus Annales Xi.ii, translated by M. Hutton)


Word of the day 10/04/18

Ailymweld = aisle-erm-weld
Ailymweliad = aisle-erm-well-yad

Ailymweld means to revisit
Ailymweliad means a revisit or a revisitation

Ail means second, ymweld means to visit, ymweliad means a visitation

A useful word for anyone wanting to revisit Wales! :slight_smile:

Sound file -


Does Welsh use ailymweld in the same metaphorical (? if that’s the right word) sense as English “revisit”? i.e. revisiting a theme in a discussion, kind of thing, or if, during a meeting, the discussion is getting nowhere, so the chair says “OK, we’ll revisit that topic at the next meeting, when we have more information”, or similar.


Yes it does! :slight_smile:

So you can ailymweld an idea, a friend, a place, a concept, the fridge to check if the jelly has set. Hope this answers your question.


Great idea for a thread Catrin. I’ll be checking these out regularly and adding tomy ever-expanding Ymadroddiadur (Phraseionary). The pronounciation tips are a great idea too. Diolch!


Thank you for your kindness! I hope the thread will prove to be useful. Today’s word coming soon…


Word of the day 11/04/18

Today’s word has been inspired by looking at the garden and seeing it finally begin to change from a winter garden to a spring garden.

Trawsnewid = trauss-neh-wid (trauss sounds like the ‘trous’ in ‘trousers’ but with a stronger ‘s’ sound and rhymes with mouse)
Trawsnewidiad = trauss-neh-wid-yad

Trawsnewid means to transform
Trawsnewidiad means a trransformation

Note that this contains the word newid (neh-wid) which means change.

Caterpillars go through a trawsnewidiad when they change in to a butterfly.

I enjoy seeing the trawsnewidiad in the garden at this time of year.

Also at this time of year many people feel compelled to trawsnewid their homes with some fresh interior decorating.

You may feel that being able to converse in Welsh has in some ways trawsnewid your life? :slight_smile:

Note: In terms of mathematics, you’ll more often hear people use trawsffurfio (trauss-fear-vio) for transform. trawsffurfio contains the word ffurf which means form / ffurfio which means to form.

Sound file -


When I saw this word, it put me in mind of Trawsfynydd. Then I realised ‘traws’ - the ‘across’ bit? - exists in a lot of names and words, such as TrawsCymru, of course.


You are absolutely right @AlanP! Traws appears in a lot of words and phrases and can mean trans/cross/across/oblique…

For instance -

lletraws - diagonal
trawst - beam/rafter
ar draws - across
traws gwlad - cross country
trawslin - transverse


Diolch yn fawr, @CatrinLliarJones. All new words to me. I particularly like ‘traws gwlad’, a counterpart to ‘cefn gwlad’.


Word of the day 12/04/18

Today’s word has again been inspired by the weather

Cysgod = cuss-god
Cysgodi = cuss-god-ee

Cysgod means shadow
Cysgodi means to shadow or to take shelter

For example, you can cysgodi someone when training for a new job and wanting to learn the ropes.

You can also cysgodi from the rain or cysgodi from the sun when you want to take shelter.

In Bala there is a B&B called Cysgod y Coed - ‘coed’ meaning trees. So I assume that the cottage is/used to be next to a woodland or forest.

I once came across a cottage named Cysgod y Bugail - ‘bugail’ meaning shepherd. So I assume that the cottage once used to provide shelter for shepherds watching their flocks in winter.

Sound file -


Does cysgod have any relation to cysgu? So maybe to sleep is to go to the land of shadows or something?


That is a wholly reasonable assumption. But this link here: says that cysgod/cysgodi is a compound word from cy-ysgodi, whereas, according to Wiktionary cysgu is a single word, in theory going back to a proto-indo-european “kewb”