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PostPosted: Wed 13 Mar 2019 6:40 pm 
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An Lon Dubh wrote:
I recently saw a letter from the 1560s with "atáim agá fhairfraighe" from an Ulster chieftain. With the "agá" being "at its" being proleptic referring to a clause to come.


In the meaning of fiafraighe? That’s pretty strange spelling. I tried looking for agá in the Corpas na Gaeilge, but most (if not all) of what I find are indirect relative clauses (mostly agá bhfuil…). EDIT: on the other hand, there are quite a few texts with agá rádh: with a quote following, which I think means basically ‘saying this:’ (lit. ‘at its saying:’), eg. do bheannuigh Dia, agá rá: ‘God blessed, saying:’; or d'fhreagair an t-aingiol agá rádh, “Tiocfaidh an Spioraid Naomh (…)” ‘the angel answered saying this, “the Holy Ghost will come (…)”’.

Anyway, I’m pretty convinced that the two things: mixing of ag and do with verbal nouns in the Middle Irish, and the fact that do became go in Connacht, resulted in the modern written do mo, do do, etc., which kinda makes sense for Connacht, and only Connacht. And in my opinion using it for anything but Connacht is wrong, and I really don't like it in the Caighdeán. Thus I also don’t really get why the corkirish blog ‘corrects’ Peadar Ua Laoghaire’s ’ghá into dhá (as ghá seems to be a more sensible way to write the contraction of ag a and that’s what’s in the original books), and similarly am to ’om, etc.

By the way, I’d need look into some older Ulster texts – I wonder how much of the modern Ulster dialects was there already, and how much came with the influence of the Scottish Gaels after the plantation of Ulster (things like cha(n) rather than , preference of lenition after prepositions with accusative rather than eclipsis or dative forms – don fhear instead of don bhfear or don fhior, etc.). On the other hand, before the plantation probably everybody used the standard classical language in writing, so I guess it’d be hard to draw any strong conclusions about the dialect anyway.


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PostPosted: Wed 13 Mar 2019 11:00 pm 
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silmeth wrote:
An Lon Dubh wrote:
I recently saw a letter from the 1560s with "atáim agá fhairfraighe" from an Ulster chieftain. With the "agá" being "at its" being proleptic referring to a clause to come.


In the meaning of fiafraighe? That’s pretty strange spelling.

You get odd spellings like that from nobels in Middle Ages. Not proper Classical Irish since they're not Bards, probably reflecting their dialect. Or maybe it reflects an alternate Classical form for the word.

Quote:
similarly am to ’om, etc.

'om is how PUL himself pronounced it.

_________________
The dialect I use is Munster Irish, particularly Cork Irish, so words or phrases I use might not be correct for other areas.:D

Ar sgáth a chéile a mhairid na daoine, lag agus láidir, uasal is íseal


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PostPosted: Sun 31 Mar 2019 4:16 pm 
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An Lon Dubh wrote:
You get odd spellings like that from nobels in Middle Ages. Not proper Classical Irish since they're not Bards, probably reflecting their dialect. Or maybe it reflects an alternate Classical form for the word.

Sure, or even just a typo (I’d still expect fhia- in the beginning) – nobody is or ever was perfect.

An Lon Dubh wrote:
Quote:
similarly am to ’om, etc.

'om is how PUL himself pronounced it.

Interesting, do you know any online resource where I could read more about his pronunciation of such forms? I thought it’s /əm/, /əd/, etc. everywhere in Munster (I guess it’s Dingle pronunciation since this is what Doyle’s and Gussmann’s An Ghaeilge teaches).




To keep going with my old notes, a short one:

For some time I had been wondering what kind of miracle turned O.Ir. siur ‘sister’ into Scottish piuthar. Honestly, Irish deirfiúr ‘sister’ (and not *deirshiur or other *deirbhiur) ← O.Ir. derbsiur ‘one own, true, sister’ also made me think.

I solved the mystery. It is so: even though since the Old Irish times /s/, when lenited, turns typically into /h/ (and it works that way in all modern Gaelic lects), in the Old Irish two different types of /s/ existed, differing in etymology and the effects of mutations on it (although phonetically they already were identical).

The most common /s/, inherited from Proto-Celtic /s/, lenited into /h/ (and was written down as <s> or <ṡ>), and a rarer one, coming from labialized /sʷ/, which lenited into /ɸ/ (written <f> or <ph>, or unfortunately <s>), which was also the effect of lenition of /p/. And surely both had palatal (slender) and non-palatal (broad) variants, but that’s not important here.

siur, coming from PIE. *swésōr, had the second /s/ and lenited into fiur (phiur) – a fiur ‘his sister’ (also written as a siur).

When in later times both /s/s merged, the Irish regularized the lenition and got a word siúr, a shiúr ‘sister (nun), his sister (nun)’ and the second compound word they kept with the original mutation deirfiúr ‘sister’; The Scots reanalized the word, based on the lenited form, concluding that the unlenited consonant must have been /p/, and came up with piuthar, a phiuthar. The long vowel in Irish as well as two syllables in Scottish Gaelic, as I believe, keep the length of the original word which in Old Irish had a hiatus, two syllables: /s’i.ur/.

Manx took a way similar to Irish, keeping the original unmutated nominative shuyr and introducing lenition into /h/, e huyr, but kept, like Scottish, the original meaning.

By the way, Scottish Gaelic also has dearbh-phiuthar for ‘biological sister’.

Another similar process of reanalysis of mutations took place on the whole Goidelic area with the úar ‘cold’ word.

It was probably often used in a context requiring lenition, and thus the Goidels decided that the beginning of the word must be not a vowel but a consonant disappearing when lenited. And thus the O.Ir. úar turned into Irish fuar, Scottish fuar and Manx feayr.




And a few new remarks on this, after I’ve read more about O.Ir. and modern Irish mutations:

1. The lenition of /sʷ/ into /ɸ/ could have come from a regular lenition of /sw/ into /hw/ with the /h/ devoicing /w/ into /ɸ/ and dissapearing – similarly in modern Irish /h/ standing next to a voiced consonant sometimes disappears and devoices the other one, see eg. scríobhthascríofa ‘written’, scuabtha /skuəpə/ ‘swept’.

2. The same might have given the modern deirfiúr – through dearbh + shiúr with bhsh devoicing into f, but I think it was already inherited as dearbh + fiúr.

3. I think the lenition /sʷ/ → /ɸ/ explains the modern word féin /heːn’/, /f’eːn’/, fhèin /heːn/ (or fhéin in pre-1981 orthography), hene ‘self’.

It comes from PIE *swé- (through some Proto-Celtic *swe-sin-) and cognates with English self, Polish się, and Scandinavian sin, so it seems natural it originally started with /s’/ (slender /s/) and lenited to a word starting with /f’/. This would explain the overwhelmingly common pronunciation with /h/ – lenition regularized to the unlabialized /s/, and thus I’d be inclined to say that actually *shéin would be the most sensible, both etymological and phonological, written form of this word for most parts of Ireland (while féin works for parts of Munster where it is so pronounced) and *shèin (or also *shéin) for Scotland.

Orthographies such as fhéin and fhèin are supposed to represent the pronunciation, but there are many arguments on the net that they are wrong because fh represents no sound at all, not /h/, and I’ve seen even théin postulated on the Daltaí Forums.

It is still a riddle to me how come there seems to not be any O.Ir. manuscripts with initial s-, was the word only used lenited, and two versions, with /f/ and /h/ competed while /f/ was more prestigious and more often written down? And where did c- in this word come from, in forms like céin (perhaps *héin*chéin delenited to → céin???)?

4. It all makes me wonder whether other instances in Goidelic languages where /h/ is written with ⟨f⟩, like in Irish future tense (glanfaidh /glɑnhə(g’)/ ‘will clean’), also come from the old /sʷ/.


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