Infinitive confusion

So it seems that with verbs in Welsh you don’t need the ‘to’ that English sticks on to an infinitive, e.g. ‘to wait’ is ‘aros’. And ‘it’s important to wait’ is ‘mae’n bwysig aros’. But ‘I’m happy to wait’ is ‘dw i’n hapus i aros’. How do I know when to put the ‘i’ in?

You’re not the first to be confused by this, nor will you be the last. Here’s a link to an older thread where this was discussed, maybe this will clear things up a bit:


Thanks! I’m possibly more baffled. But at least I know I can stop looking for a simple rule!

1 Like

One “rule” that often applies is if you’re making a general statement, not talking about anyone in particular, then it doesn’t usually need the “i” e.g.
in your example mae’n bwysig aros - it’s just making a general statement, not mentioning a person, where dw i’n hapus i aros - you’re talking about yourself, not just in general.


This trips everyone up sooner or later! I don’t have much to add to the advice others have given, other than to say you’ll gradually get a feel for whether to use ‘i’ or not. These days I tend to use ‘i’ just when it feels like it should be there, and I’m right probably about 80% of the time.

Also (and I feel like I say this every time I post in the forums, but it bears repeating!) being understood is the goal with SSIW, rather than being strictly grammatically correct. That’s why they teach a lot of colloquial and somewhat slangy turns of phrase. People will still understand what you mean if you flub it a bit, so try not to fret too much.


Absolutely the best way!

1 Like

In my own learning, I never paid much attention to this, and it just trotted off and figured itself out in the background somewhere…

The best rule of thumb I’ve found in teaching is not to think of it as being connected to the infinitive in any way, but seeing it as connected to the previous word - so as Kevin said on the link Hendrik shared, how is sut, how to is sut i - and there are words which like to have that ‘i’ after them…

sut i
mynd i
hapus i
aros i
awyddus i
y cyntaf i
amser i
rhywun i

but ‘liking’ to have the i isn’t always the same as insisting on it… :wink: So it’s a good one not to worry too much about, because you will ALWAYS be understood :slight_smile: