Learning Welsh for Wedding

Morning all, I am marrying a Welsh lass and, although she doesnt speak Welsh, I would like to create a poem for our wedding and then learn it in Welsh to speak aloud.
The wedding will be August 2020 and I have NO natural language abilities!

A few questions for the good people here:

  1. if I created a poem would someone be able to translate it in to Welsh?
  2. once created, what’s the best way to practice the poem to make sure I get the pronunciation right?
  3. is this enough time?

Honest answers only, please, interested in what you all think…



Hi Paul, I’ll try and give you some honest answers!

Yes, more than likely there’d be someone who can do that or knows someone else who can, but it’s hard to promise without seeing it. The thing to remember though is that sometimes poetic language in English doesn’t translate exactly or nicely into Welsh e.g. I once tried to translate a poem in English that used the phrase “wool-bundled lovers” to describe a couple huddled together on a bench in winter woolies, but I failed miserably to come up with anything conveying that so poetically and succinctly in Welsh!

I would suggest the best way to do this might be to join our Welsh Speaking Practise group on Slack - it’s a chat platform and I for one would be happy to go through pronounciation of the poem with you on that.

Well I’d say that depends on you and how long the poem is - the longer the poem, the longer it will take to write, translate and perfect pronounciation. As long as it’s not an ‘epic’, it sounds like there should be enough time.

General advice - try to avoid idioms/cliches and overly ‘flowery’ language (they don’t always translate well, if at all). Also, I would suggest writing it in free verse rather than rhyme - words that rhyme in English don’t necessarily have rhyming equivalents in Welsh, and because the number of syllables in Welsh and English equivalent words often differ, writing in a meter in English won’t be easy to replicate either. (Translating with rhyme and meter can be done, but takes exceptional skill and more time and you’d probably need an Eisteddfod Prifardd for that anyway!)

Hope that helps.


Sorry! I’ve only just seen this.

What a lovely idea.

As long as I get it in good time, I’m happy to have a go at translating and recording a reading for pronunciation purposes. :blush:

Firstly, congratulations!! Marry a Welsh woman makes you extremely blessed :smile:

Best way to get used to Welsh pronunciation would be to give a few of the lessons a go. They’re really good and you don’t need to start with an inherent skill for learning languages (although I’d argue everyone has the ability to learn a language).

I’ve sent you the translation @paul-28 and will endeavour to do the recording today. :slight_smile:

Thank you thank you thank you