Irish Lesson 54

Pronunciation Exercise

Read the Irish words aloud once slowly, then repeat them, looking at the key below if you are not sure of the pronunciation.

rinn, dúinn, linn, fógra, romhainn, iascaireacht, deireadh, marbh, maraon, cóiriú, airgead, airgid, te, tuigthe, cáin, tháinig, eacnamaíocht, creachadóireacht, cruinniú, coinneáil, stiúrthóir, fírinneach

Key: rin, DOO-in, lin, FOHG-ruh, ROH-in, EES-kuh-rahk*t, DER-uh, MAHR-ruhv, mahr-AY*N, KOH-ir-oo, AR-i-guhd, AR-i-gid, te, TIG-he, KAW*-in, HAW*-nig, ahk-NAHM-ee-ohk*t, krak-uh-DOH-i-rahk*t, KRIN-yoo, KIN-aw*-il, shtyoor-HOH-ir, FEER-i-nyahk*


In Irish, you say "Tá sé ag rith" for "He is running". "Beidh sé ag rith" means "He will be running". With certain verbs, meaning sitting, standing, lying, sleeping, walking, and residing, the form is a little different. For those, we say "He is in his sitting" or "They are in their standing", for example, and the Irish for these two examples is: "Tá sé ina shuí." "Tá siad ina seasamh."

Here are some more complete examples of this:

tá mé i mo shuí (taw* may* i muh HEE), I am sitting

tá tú i do shuí (i duh HEE), you are sitting

tá sé ina shuí (in-uh HEE), he is sitting

tá sí ina suí (in-uh SEE), she is sitting

táimid inár suí (TAW*-mid in-aw*r SEE), we are sitting

tá sibh in bhur suí (taw* shiv in vwoor SEE), you are sitting

tá Máire ina suí (taw* MAW*-re in-uh SEE), Mary is sitting

tá mé i mo sheasamh (taw* may* i muh HAS-uhv), I am standing

tá tú i do sheasamh (i duh HAS-uhv), you are standing

tá sé ina sheasamh (in-uh HAS-uhv), he is standing

tá sí ina seasamh (in-uh SHAS-uhv), she is standing

táimid inár seasamh (in-aw*r SHAS-uhv), we are standing

tá siad ina seasamh (in-uh SHAS-uhv), they are standing

tá Seán ina sheasamh (in-uh HAS-uhv), John is standing

The negative and questions are formed by merely changing "tá" to "níl" or "an bhfuil." Past and future tense also merely change "tá". For example, "I will be standing here" is "Beidh mé i mo sheasamh anseo" (be may* i muh HAS-uhv un-SHUH).

These verb forms are annoying at first because you find it slow to get the proper aspiration or eclipsis. "My, your, his" all aspirate, and "our, your (plural), their" all eclipse. Practice helps on this.

Other verbs in this group are:

luigh (li), i mo luí (i muh LEE), lie (lie down)

dúisigh (DOO-shee), i mo dhúiseacht (i muh GOO-shahk*t), be awake

codlaigh (KUHL-ee), i mo chodladh (i muh K*UHL-uh), sleep

cónaigh (KOHN-ee), i mo chónaí (i muh K*OHN-ee), dwell, reside

And finally, "táim i mo thost" (TAW*-im i muh HUHST) means "I am silent".


Progressive drill is important for these verbs. Make sure that you go through at least one drill for each of the verbs, so that the changes, including those caused by aspiration and eclipsis, become familiar to you.

Start with a simple one: luigh (li), pronounced with the tongue spread wide and pushed against the upper front teeth.

An bhfuil mé i mo luí? (un vwil may* i muh LEE), Am I lying down? Níl mé i mo luí. Tá tú i do luí. An bhfuil tú i do luí? Níl tú i do luí. Tá sé ina luí. An bhfuil sé ina luí? Níl sé ina luí. Tá sí ina luí. An bhfuil sí ina luí? Níl sí ina luí. Táimid inár luí. (TAW*-mid in-aw*r LEE). An bhfuilimid inár luí? Nílimid inár luí. Tá sibh in bhur luí. (in vwoor LEE). An bhfuil sibh in bhur luí? Níl sibh in bhur luí. Tá siad ina luí. An bhfuil siad ina luí? Níl siad ina luí. Tá mé i mo luí.

Another example: An bhfuilim i mo chónaí (i muh K*OHN-ee) ansin? Nílim i mo chónaí ansin. Tá tú i do chónaí ansin. (i duh K*OHN-ee un-SHIN). An bhfuil tú i do chónaí ansin? Etc. The last two sentences will be: Níl siad ina gcónaí ansin (in-uh GOHN-ee un-SHIN). Táim i mo chónaí ansin.

Next, read these sentences. If you can not understand them, look at the translation below.

Bhí sí ina codladh (in-uh KUHL-uh). An mbeidh sibh in bhur seasamh ar an gcosán? (un ME shiv in vwoor SHAS-uhv er un guh-SAW*N) Ní bheimid. Dúirt sé go rabhamar inár dtost ansin (DOO-irt shay* goh ROU-uh-muhr in aw*r DUHST un-SHIN). Nach mbeimid inár gcónaí sa chathair? (nahk* ME-mid in aw*r GOHN-ee suh K*AH-hir) Beidh sibh (be shiv). Ní bhíonn tú i do shuí anseo (nee VEE-uhn too i duh HEE un-SHUH). Nár chuala tú go raibh siad ina ndúiseacht? (naw*r K*OO-uh-luh too goh rev SHEE-uhd in-uh NOO-shahk*t) Chonaic mé nach raibh sé ina luí (k*uh-NIK may* nahk* rev shay* in-uh LEE).

Translation: She was sleeping. Will you be standing on the sidewalk? we won't. He said that we were silent there. Won't we be living in the city? You will. You are not usually sitting here. Didn't you hear that they were awake. i saw that he wasn't lying down.

As you can see from these examples, these verbs can be combined in the same way as ordinary verbs to form more involved statements and questions. The verbs have other forms, too; for example, to say "He sleeps here," use "Codlaíonn sé anseo: (kuhl-EE-uhn shay* un-SHUH).

(c) 1998 The Irish People. May be reprinted with credit.

Irish Lesson 53

Irish Lesson 55

Return to the Irish People Home Page