The Irish People is the only newspaper of its kind published in the United States. The Irish People is published 50 weeks a year since 1971. A sixteen page political weekly, The Irish People gives up-to date, uncensored information pertaining to the war in northeast Ireland. It also keeps its readers abreast of events here in the United States aimed at combating the injustices carried out by the British forces of occupation.



Irish Language Lessons

Irish Lesson 78


Pronounce Irish "u" like English (oo) in "food" or "tool" when a síneadh (SHEEN-uh) is over the letter "ú." Protrude the lips farther than in the English sound, however, and hold the sound longer. Examples: úll (ool), múin (MOO-in), brú, lú, éalú (AY*-loo).

If the "u" has no síneadh, pronounce it the same way, but do not hold the sound as long. It will resemble the (u) in English "put" or "foot". Examples: rug (rug), puball (PU-buhl), guth (gu).

When next to an "a", a "u" may be pronounced (oo), as in: buail (BOO-il), nua (NOO-uh).


The saorbhriathra (say*r-VREE-uh-ruh), free forms, for "tá" in the past are:

bhíothas (VEE-huhs), people were, etc.

ní rabhthas (nee ROU-huhs), people weren't, etc.

an rabhthas?, were people, etc?

nach rabhthas?, weren't people, etc?


Bhíothas ag dul go dtí na pictiúir; people were going to the movies.

Nach rabhthas ag léamh an leabhair sin? (uh LAY*-uhv un LOU-wir shin); weren't people reading that book?, wasn't that book being read?

In the future tense, the forms are:

beifear (BE-fuhr), people will be, etc.

ní bheifear (nee VE-fuhr), people will not be, etc.

an mbeifear? (un ME-fuhr), will people be, etc?

nach mbeifear?, won't people be, etc?


Beifear ag caitheamh tobac arís (uh KAH-huhv toh-BAHK uh-REESH), people will be smoking again.

An mbeifear ag teacht isteach go luath? (uh TYAHK*T ish-TYAHK* goh LOO-uh), will people be coming inside soon?


ag ól bainne (eg OHL BAHN-ye), drinking milk

ag ól tae (tay*), drinking tea

ag ól beorach (BYOH-ruhk*), drinking beer

ag ól leanna (LAN-uh), drinking ale

ag ithe lóin (eg I-he LOH-in), eating lunch

ag ól caife (KAHF-e), drinking coffee

ag ól uisce (ISH-ke), drinking water

ag ól fíona (FEEN-uh), drinking wine

ag ól uisce beatha (ISH-ke BA-huh), drinking whiskey

ag ithe mo lóin, eating my lunch

Notes on vocabulary: Forms like"ag ól bainne" mean literally "at drinking milk", and the word "bainne" is in the genative or possessive case, as mentioned in Lesson 20. Often this case form is similar to the nominative case, which is the form that you have been learning. Sometimes there is more change, as in "beoir" (BYOH-ir), beer. It becomes "beorach" (BYOH-ruhk*), of beer, in the genitive.

The nouns can be grouped in dependence on how their genitive case and plurals are formed. We will be doing some of this in the next lessons, using phrases as much as possible. You will learn how to work out what the forms should be for many nouns.


Mícheál (MEE-haw*l): Céard a thabharfaidh (HOOR-hee) tú dom ---- le h-aghaidh an dhinnéir (le HEYE-ee uh yin-YAY*R) ---- anocht? Michael: What will you give me for dinner tonight?

Róisín (roh-SHEEN): B'fhéidir (BAY*-dir) go dtabharfaidh (DOOR-hee) mé duit mairteoil (mahrt-YOH-il), a Mhíchil (uh VEE-hil). Rose: Perhaps I will give you beef, Michael.

Mícheál: Beidh mé ag ól caife, freisin (eg OHL KAHF-e, FRESH-in). I will be drinking coffee, too.

Róisín: Níl fhios agam faoi sin fós (NEEL is uh-GUHM fwee shin fohs). I don't know about that yet.

Mícheál: Tá an caife ag éirí (eg EYE-ree) níos saoire (nees SEE-i-re) na laethanta seo (LAY*-uhn-tuh shuh). Táthar ag ól a thuilleadh (uh HIL-uh) caife. Coffee is getting cheaper these days. People are drinking more coffee.

Róisín: Ólfar tae agus uisce ---- sa teaghlach seo (suh TEYE-luhk* shuh). B'féidir go gcuirfear braon (BRAY*N) bainne ---- ar an tae, ach ní fheicfear mórán (muh-RAW*N) caife anseo go ceann tamaill (goh kyoun TAH-mil). Tea and water will be drunk in this household. Perhaps a drop of milk will be put into the tea, but not much coffee will be seen here for a while.

Mícheál: D'ólamar beoir ---- lenár ndinnéar (LEN-aw*r nin-YAY*R) ---- cúpla bliain ó shin (KOOP-luh BLEE-in oh HIN) ---- ach ansin thosaíomar (hohs-EE-uh-muhr) ag ól fíona (FEEN-uh). We drank beer with our dinner a few years ago, but then we began to drink wine.

Róisín: Is fíor sin, ach tá an saol á athrú (un SAY*L aw* AH-roo), ar ndóigh (er NOH-ee). Cén fáth nach mbeidh (me) tae maith go leor duit? That is true, but the world is changing, of course. Why won't tea be good enough for you?

Mícheál: Beidh (be) sé maith go leor, mar shin. Beifear ag ól beorach agus fíona ag an teach tábhairne (tahk* TAW*R-ne) ---- ar aon chuma (er ay*n K*UM-uh). Caithimid dul ann (KAH-i-mid duhl oun) ---- anocht. It will be all right, then. People will be drinking beer and wine at the tavern, anyway. We must go there tonight.

Róisín: B'fhearr liom (bahr luhm) bheith ag féachaint ar an teilifís sa bhaile. Craolfar (KRAY*L-fuhr) a lán clár maith anocht. I would prefer to be watching television at home. Many good programs will be broadcast tonight.

Mícheál: Fanfaidh (FAHN-hee) mé istigh, mar sin. Tá súil agam nach mbeidh ceoldrámaí gallúnaí iontu (KYOHL-DRAW*M-ee gahl-OON-ee IN-tuh). I will stay inside, then. I hope they will not be soap operas.

Róisín: Ná bíodh imní ort (naw* BEE-ohk* IM-nee OH-ruht). Dráma den chéad scoth (HYAY*-uhd skoh) ---- a bheidh ar bhealach a trí (ve er VAL-uhk* uh tree). Don't be worried. It's a play of the first quality that will be on Channel Three.

Mícheál: Agus cluiche peile, freisin? (KLI-hye PEL-e, FRESH-in). And a football game, too?

(c) 1999 The Irish People. May be reprinted with credit.

Irish Lesson 79

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