Spelling and word order

I asked before about spelling and one answer is that welsh spelling is phonetic.

But the thing is, Id like to learn to properly spell so I can read and write as well.

Is there standard spelling.

I mean , for example, is it esiau or isio? Where can I find conventional spelling.?

Also. Im wondering about word order. Im seing that in some places it is the same as english and other places otherwise. Likewise, in the lessons Dwi comes at the beginning of the sentence but I have seen other sources that shows it at the end

The best resource for modern written Welsh is “Ymarfer Ysgrifennu Cymraeg” by Gwyn Thomas. It is an authoritative resource about spelling, syntax, mutations and other grammatical things. But it is in Welsh.
Gareth King has numerous books in English that would help you as well.


The standard spelling is eisiau. The problem with many dictionaries is that in order to find the conventional spelling, you need to know it first, which doesn’t help! Gareth King has also published a dictionary for Welsh learners which does give some variations.

yes, for instance dwi can appear at the end when the word order has changed for emphasis.


Standard English has quite a fixed word order, that you can’t really mess around with too much - so we’ll mostly do emphasis with tone of voice, and try to reflect that in writing with exclamation marks or italics or all-caps etc. So if you’re insisting that you’re going to the shop, and not to the ice rink or the police station, we might put “I’m going to the shop!” or “I’m going to the shop!” or some such.

Welsh can often emphasize things just by putting them at the start of the sentence when you might not otherwise expect them to be there, so while your neutral translation would be Dw i’n mynd i’r siop, I think you’ll also find (someone here will swiftly help out if I’m wrong) that you could say Mynd i’r siop dw i or I’r siop dw i’n mynd.

Again, someone else will probably confirm or correct this, but I think Wenglish speakers (valley speech, strongly Welsh-influenced English) can and do say things like “Going to the shops, I am,” which is something I would simply never say in English.


Also “The shops, I’m going to.”


Just a slight thought. “What it is right” - “off to the shops I am” might seem a bit more natural.

If you see someone you know down the shops then a useful conversation opener might be

“not shopping again are you”? - which avoids completely having to say hello altogether and grammatically I guess is hopelessly incorrect.

Overheard some speaking earlier saying:

“walking back from town she is now, not waiting for the bus”


Yoda must have been Welsh. :grinning:


Wow, it is very interesting because I’ve never thought about this…but people from my home town - Brecon - close to the valleys - say this kind of thing aaaalllll the time…

…it seems completely normal to me - although I haven’t lived there for years and wouldn’t say it myself ( in Yorkshire! - might get some funny looks! ) - but at the same time it really reminds me of home - I can hear people saying that :smile:

How evocative a thought can be…

Rich :slight_smile:


I wasn’t really aware either, but I started listening for it today, expecting it to be old fashioned or something that might have died out a bit and it’s not - it’s normal and far more common than I expected - everyone seems to be doing it.

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And also 'Shops the, going am I to", of course…


according to this link Yoda might say:

Going to the shops, am I. Hmmmmmm


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One of the brainiest beings in the galaxy (reputedly), and yet he can’t master the simple principles of subject-verb-object word order… :confused:


Well it is a funny thing - I was mentioning in another post a short while ago, that I was stunned to find out ( by chance I saw some census data) that the vast majority of people spoke Welsh in Brecon at about 1900…and that it dropped like a stone over 30 to 40 years as a result of the Welsh Not and the associated sense of there being ‘ no future’ in the language, at that time.

@Iestyn mentioned in the thread that exactly the same thing was true during the same period in the valleys and mentioned that a lot of families took the decision to ‘switch’ their family language overnight - incredible stuff (terrible).

I can easily imagine how families switching to their second language might bring elements of their first one with them. In this post we are talking about emphatic sentences in English aren’t we?!..,there was another discussion which I can’t find immediately about tags… it’s obvious that they are used in English especially in the valleys at the end of a sentence in the way they would have been used in Welsh…isn’t it? (did you see what I did there?!)

So, not very surprisingly at all, I suppose we have ended up with a mutated version of English…which many Welsh genes in it!

Rich :slight_smile:


He would make a good poet though - the best poets seem to have happily unmastered the art of SVO. If Shakespeare or Dylan Thomas did Yoda it might go like this.

Born great, some are,
greatness some achieve,
and greatness thrust upon them, some have. Herh herh herh.

The fool doth think, wise, is he,
but to be a fool the wise man knows himself.

Though right, wise men at their end know dark is,
had forked no lightning they because their words
Go gentle into that good night, do not. Yeesssssss.