Newydd yn dod

Smae i pawb! I found saysoemthingin a few days ago. I’m a bit of a linguaphile and Welsh is one of the languages I’ve been studying in a desultory way on and off for over 20 years. I’m hoping the lessons from Iestyn and Cat will improve my listening skills to the point of being useful! Most of the Welsh I’ve learned (and partly forgotten) was from Heini Gryffydd’s “Welcome to Welsh”, mainly South Walian, so I’ve opted for the southern version.Already by lesson 4 I’m getting some surprises - Iestyn says now for a simple way to talk about the past - so I assume he’s going to introduce “wedi” - but no, it’s les i and les ti! Most of the Welsh I’ve learned (and partly forgotten) was from Heini Gryffydd’s “Welcome to Welsh”, mainly South Walian, so I’ve opted for the southern version. I’ve been reading a lot of the posts on the forum and I’ve a few comments/questions:

  1. Slavonic and Celtic - Tatjana and Stella/Seren (kak ti zvezda!), have you come across any words that are more or less the same in Welsh as in Slovene or Russian but different in English? Bearing in mind that the Celts are thought to have originated in the same region as the early slavs.

  2. When learning Russian vocabulary, I’ve discovered that knowing a bit about the Welsh mutations can help enormously in seeing how apparently unfamiliar words are derived from familiar roots by sound shifts corresponding to the Welsh mutations. For example, the Russian word “muravey”. Mutate m to f and mutate v to m, and we see the similarity to the French “fourmi”. That’s how I remember the Russian for ant.

  3. When trying to converse in Welsh, should we be encouraged or discouraged to use the strategy, when the Welsh word won’t come, of slipping in the English word, with an ending if appropriate. Native Welsh speakers even do this. Like I once heard on Radio Cwmru, Newyddion “Mae wedi digwydd explosion in block o’ flatiau yn Llundain”.

  4. I’ve heard that “Penguin” is Welsh’s gift to the vocabularies of almost every other language. Is it true.

Pob hwyl, David

Privet, David, kak ti? Kak eto prekrasno, chto ti govorish po-russki:) Dobro pozhalovat’ na forum!
As to your question, well, I can’t think of any words now, but I’m pretty sure I have come across a few. There are some words with similar Indoeuropean roots - like “prygat’” and “broga” but it has the same root in English too, “frog”. Or @garethrking mentioned “zima” “gaeaf” - now this does seem to have a different root in English, winter… But this is a most fascinating object of research:) I’m a bit more interested in the common roots of our folktales and songs, but etymology is really fantastic too. I have noticed some similarities in the way the sentences are built, though, this “Mae rhywbeth gyda fi” and “У меня есть” with almost the same paraphrase - to be + the dative case.

Oh, this is very interesting too. I’ll wait to hear what our fluent speaker say. I do this all the time, and the few native speakers I have talked to also seem to have no problem with that:)

Not to be picky, but would like to correct you anyway so you’d learn properly. It’s “Wnes i” and “Wnest ti” but when speaking that “w” sound is actually dropped out.

For your question … at the moment I actually can’t remember any Slovene word which would be similar to Welsh but different in English but I’m sure there are some though. Might remember some in a time and I hope I’ll remember to return back here and write them down for you.

Now, here I have a question: How did you cope with audio material (if you got any at all) in this course. I couldn’t find it useful because there are only words and sentences recorded spokein with such lightening speed that I just couldn’t catch the words or phrases at all. Don’t want to criticise but SSi way of audio courses is like a balsam for my ears in comparrison to this courses audio recordings.

Oh and huge welcome to the forum of course! :slight_smile:

<> and <> and <> Bedegedig! I’ve just found your Welsh-Russian thread - maybe I’ll input to that later. Fascinating to know that Welsh is appreciated in Russia. Is it possible to learn Welsh directly form Russian without knowing any English?

Vsevo Horoshevo

Dava (my diminutive in Russian!)

Tatiana, diolch am “wnes i” ac “wnes ti”, dim les i ac lesl ti!

I think your kovac = hof looks a very plausible Celtic-Slavonic cognate. Irish is gabha.

Welcome to Welsh audio. I bought the cassette version (it was that long ago), and I used to play it in my car on drives down from the Wirral, where I live, to Swansea, where I used to visit the University (Adran Cemeg). I was reading the book separately and I got to the stage where I could follow what I heard up to about half way through the book - beyond which it started to get too fast for me and I would have needed more effort than I had time to put in. I’ve now got it on a CD, but haven’t played it much recently. I agree (on the basis of lessons 1-4 of course 1) that the SSi method is excellent. I wish there was an SSi for Malaysian, which I’m trying to get some fluency in.

Diolch am croeso mawr!


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Well, I deliberately didn’t want to mention this one as I wanted to remember some more words, but obviously without any success. :slight_smile: Yah, this word looks prety related to Celtic but to be honest I never was that much of a “linguist” to go and investigate those relationships. It’s partly maybe because in primary school (somewhere in 6th or 7th grade) we were drilling those relationships and from where languages originate etc, etc so much that I just wanted to forget everything. Instead of making us eager to learn about languages they made us not even wanting to know anything … Well, but this is hen stori …

I bought it on CD and tried to play it but it was all mess to me because in the book there are no specific instructions (as much as I can remember now) where on the CD that content is and when to listen to it. Well, now, since I’ve learnt quite a lot through SSiW it might be good listening exercise but I have to be honest that this book teaches more formal and not colloquial Welsh so for one not so “experienced” it might be the disturbing moment to listen to this CD at that particular moment. Well, might very well be I’ll play that CD once again to hear what it will seam like to me now, but it surely is heard like excelerated listening practice with that speed…

I also didn’t find that that book would contain some keys to the exercises what means that you do exercise and then you have to search through the book in order to correct wrong things you’ve done. That could be an exercise too but the time is not always one’s friend so I prefer to have exercises with correct answers alongside so I can control what I made. Well of course for this “controlling” high portion of self-honesty is required not to be tempted to just look at the answers/solutions and write them down …

Well, @stella is surely more suitable to answer this, but still - I believe I’ve read somewhere on this forum written by @aran that it would be possible in the future when SSiRuissian will be ready and out what should be prety soon I think.

That would be fantastic:) Yes, it’s possible to learn Welsh through the medium of Russian - we have two very good books - “Grammatica valliyskogo yazyka” by Sergey Halipov and “Drevnevalliyskiy” (Ancient Welsh" by A.I. Fallileev, I have both:) There are much more textbooks of Irish than of Welsh, but Halipov’s grammar is rather excellent. Maybe it’s a more formal kind of Welsh, but it was, I believe, written for our scholars who wanted to read contemporary Welsh literature and converse with colleagues, and probably it serves its purpose.

Vsevo horoshevo,

Elly (my diminutive in Russian:)

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Are you doing the “levels” or the " courses?"
It’s better to do the newer “levels " rather than the “courses” - they introduce you to the " short form” past tense earlier (more widely used in the South and in writing). That will be more useful to you in comprehending what people say, speaking to them and in reading!

Croeso @davidroberts_6. If you don’t want to be tagged as the 6th of that name, I’m sure someone could change it for you to whatever you choose!!
I would think most English words come from Saxon, Anglic, Danish, Norse or Norman French, with an itsy bit of Latin and an even smaller bit of Cymraeg (i.e. original British). Norman French and Latin probably influenced various Central European languages, but there are a lot of English roots which would have no connection with any Celtic origins.
Not that I know a thing about it. My hobby is History and pre-history, not linguistics!!
Oh, and where are you? If outside Wales there is a petition I’d love you to sign!!

The Levels are the newer material.

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Oops! Diolch!

The first recorded use of any form of “penguin” in any language is in the logbook of Sir Francis Drake’s chaplain in 1578, describing them as a type of “fowl which the Welsh name pengwin”.
It seems to have spread from there into European books on birds.
So even though the word is not recorded in Welsh elsewhere, it seems likely!

Henddraig, howl! - dw i’n byw i Bebington, Wirral (ger Penbedw). If I can I’ll try to change my name to Dava, the Russian diminutive of my name. Yes I think of English as basically a germanic language with simplified grammar (apart from our complex verb tenses with auxiliaries) which has acquired a large extra vocabulary from French. I think that’s why we (well me anyway) can get further quicker in the Romance languages than in other languages like german. Once you’ve learned the basic grammar and basic vocabulary, the next big level is where you can understand and use the more sophisticated vocabularary - and to a large extent that’s the same in French, Spanish, Italian and English (e.g. all those words ending in -tion (Eng & Fr), -zione (Ital), -cion (Span).

Tatiana, am Welcome to Welsh, tybed os ydym yn meddwl am yr un llyfr? In mine the first lesson is “Gwerthu Brwsus” and all of the exercises are of the form - Test yourself: cover one side. Then it gives two columns, e.g:

Cover the left side of this message, go the end and translate the right hand sentence into Welsh

The book doesn’t give any links to the cassette - apparently the cassette was a later addition in response to demand. I’m not advanced enough to know whether the Welsh is more formal or colloquial, but the topics are very much down to earth and informal - playing darts in the pub, flirting with the Plaid Cymru candidate…
Meanwhile, thanks again for wnes i and wnest ti. This prompted me to look what Welcome to Welsh says about the past tense (I didn’t get that far when working through it). Sure enough, gwneud goes gwnes i, gwnest ti…, so if the g is lost (soft mutation?) and the w gets dropped, what Iestyn and Cat taught me is in effect I did do/want/say…

Now here’s the exercise from W to W
Mae rhaid i Alun dalu am y rownd nesa Alan must pay for the next round

This seems pretty convincing to me. The fact that penguins’ heads are black is a bit anomalous, but probably the Welsh sailors saw then as a slightly different version of white-headed birds they are familiar with.

Ooohhhh … I didn’t come that far in Welcome to Welsh. I dismissed the book immediately when I found SSiW and didn’'t take it into my hands afterwards anymore. I only did Lesson 1 and didn’t totally know what to do with all materials in the book and particularly didn’t know how to get exercises done. I was very irritated I (obviously didn’t know how) couldn’t control do I make exercises right or not so I don’t know anything about Plaid Cymru (from that book) or playing darts in the pub … I can’t even remember what was the first lesson about. Was it about anything at all? I’ve “archived” that book alongside with CD so I am not even willing to go and look about that. “Teach yourself Welsh” seams much better to me despite (that I have) very old and this for it teaches a bit different expressions and even more formal Welsh but at least it has exercises which you are in control of what you’re doing. But, I don’t use that either these days. I’m not capable of much paper reading lately so the books are a bit on the sideway for the moment.

Dava, can I ask you how you changed your name here? I would like to become Seren (have wanted it for a long time) but I thought it was impossible.

You have to ask one of administrators to do so for you. I’ve done it in the past too.

It is impossible to do by yourself, however new users (like a day or two new) might have that option to change their name in order to totally “adapt” to the forum. I’m not sure about that. I never tested this thing.

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Oh, I see. What a pity(

I am sure if you ask @aran to do it for you he’d gladly do that. You’re valuable member (honest opinion) and you deserve the name “Seren” if you have a wish for it because you are a Seren … I know you love Cymraeg very much so the name would really suit you very well. :slight_smile:

Ahh, and Aran will see this post anyway … :slight_smile: