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Connacht Irish: Wikis

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Note: This page uses the IPA to transcribe Irish. Readers familiar with other conventions may wish to see International Phonetic Alphabet for Irish for a comparison of the IPA system with those used in learners' materials.
The three dialects of the Irish language, with Connacht in the west.
An Irish-language sign in County Galway

Connacht Irish is the dialect of the Irish language spoken in the province of Connacht. Gaeltacht regions in Connacht are found in Counties Mayo (notably Tourmakeady, Achill Island and Erris) and Galway (notably in parts of Connemara and on the Aran Islands). The Mayo and Galway varieties differ from each other in a variety of ways, as Mayo Irish has a number of features in common with Ulster Irish, whereas Galway would have the Munster Irish equivalents of the same features.

Contents

Lexicon

Some differences between Mayo and Galway are seen in the lexicon:

Mayo Galway Gloss
cluinim cloisim "I hear"
doiligh deacair "difficult"
úr nua "new"
nimhneach tinn "sore"

Phonology

The phonemic inventory of Connacht Irish (based on the accent of Tourmakeady in Mayo[1]) is as shown in the following chart (see International Phonetic Alphabet for an explanation of the symbols). Symbols appearing in the upper half of each row are velarized (traditionally called "broad" consonants) while those in the bottom half are palatalized ("slender"). The consonant /h/ is neither broad or slender.

Consonant
phonemes
Labial Coronal Dorsal Glottal
Bilabial Labio-
dental
Labio-
velar
Dental Alveolar Alveolo-
palatal
Palatal Velar
Plosive

        t̪ˠ
 
d̪ˠ
 
 
 
     
c
 
ɟ
k
 
ɡ
 
   
Fricative/
Approximant
   
 
  w
 
   
 
   
ʃ
   
ç
 
j
x
 
ɣ
 
h  
Nasal  
          n̪ˠ
n̪ʲ
 
       
ɲ
  ŋ
 
   
Tap                   ɾˠ
ɾʲ
               
Lateral
approximant
              l̪ˠ
l̪ʲ
 
               

The vowels of Connacht Irish are as shown on the following chart. These positions are only approximate, as vowels are strongly influenced by the palatalization and velarization of surrounding consonants.

Connacht Irish vowel chart.png

In addition, Connacht has the diphthongs /iə, uə, əi, əu/.

Some characteristics of Connacht that distinguish it from the other dialects are:

  • In some varieties, vowel lengthening before word-internal clusters of voiced stop + liquid (e.g. /ɑːɡləʃ/ eaglais "church"
  • In some varieties, a four-way distinction among coronal nasals and laterals: /n̪ˠ ~ n̪ʲ ~ nˠ ~ nʲ/, /l̪ˠ ~ l̪ʲ ~ lˠ ~ lʲ/, often without lengthening of orthographic short vowels before them.
  • In the variety spoken in Cois Fharraige (the area along the north shore of Galway Bay between Barna and Casla), underlying short /a/ is realized as a long front [aː] while underlying long /aː/ is realized as a back [ɑː].
  • /n/ is realized as [r] (or is replaced by /r/) after consonants other than [s]. This happens in Ulster as well.

Morphology

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Nouns

In some dialects of Connacht the plural endings -anna and -acha are always replaced by -annaí and -achaí. It is also common in many Gaelic-speaking areas of Connemara that the dative singular form of all 2nd declension nouns has been generally adopted as the nominative, giving these nouns the typical ending in palatalized consonants in the nominative singular. This is indicated in the spelling by the letter i before the final consonant.

Connemara form Standard form Gloss
-achaí, -annaí -acha, -anna Plural ending
bróig bróg "shoe"
ceird ceard "craft"
cluais cluas "ear"
cois cos "foot, leg"
láimh lámh "hand"

Verbs

Irish verbs are characterized by having a mixture of analytic forms (where information about person and number is provided by a pronoun) and synthetic forms (where this information is provided in an ending on the verb) in their conjugation. In Galway and Mayo, as in Ulster, the analytic forms are used in a variety of forms where the standard language has synthetic forms, e.g. molann muid "we praise" (standard molaimid) or mholfadh siad "they would praise" (standard mholfaidís). However, the synthetic forms, including those no longer included in the standard language, may be used in answering questions.

Díonaim (I make/I do) in standard Irish (Déanaim)

References

  1. ^ de Búrca, Seán (1958). The Irish of Tourmakeady, Co. Mayo. Dublin: Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies. ISBN 0-901282-49-9.  

Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

English

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Proper noun

Singular
Connacht Irish

Plural
-

Connacht Irish

  1. (Irish) A dialect of the Irish language indigenous to the province of Connacht .

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