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  5. "D'imir mé iománaíocht agus m…

"D'imir iománaíocht agus ansin."

Translation:I played hurling while I was there.

September 6, 2015



I could figure out the intended meaning but i don't understand why. Is there a rule to link to that explains this construction?


I'm not really sure what it is you're asking for, but if agus is separating two similar things (two nouns, two complete sentences (verb-subject-object)) then agus is usually a conjunction equivalent to "and" in English.

an Rannóg Timpistí agus Éigeandála - "the Accident and Emergency Department"
san Astráil agus sa Nua-Shéalainn - "in Australia and (in) New Zealand"
shiúil mé ann agus as - "I walked there and back"
thit sé agus bhris sé a lámh - "he fell and he broke his arm"
d'iompaigh sé thart agus theith sé leis - "he turned tail and fled"

But when agus is followed by a pronoun, it usually means "when/while/as".

taispeánann sé iad agus iad ag léim - "it shows them in the act of jumping"
tháinig sé isteach agus mé ag imeacht - "he came in as I was leaving"
phós sé agus é ag obair i Sasana - "he got married while he was working in England"
d'admhaigh sé é agus é á cheistiú - "he admitted it while he was being questioned"
chaoch sé a shúil orm agus é á rá - "he winked at me as he was speaking"
d'éirigh sé mór léi agus iad ar an gcoláiste - "he became friendly with her when they were at college"

There are some other constructions that follow a similar pattern:
d'amharc sé orm agus iontas air - "he looked at me with a surprised look"
d'fhreagair sé agus amhras ina ghuth - "he replied with doubt in his voice"


I don't get were 'was' has come from


I think it's more an implied construction as "D'imir" would dictate the tense, since 'agus mé ansin' would loosely translate to 'when i there' as without a verb.


I understand the and ... me construction is Hiberno-English, but here I'd think nuair a bhi mé


Whenever I encounter an unfamiliar Irish grammatical structure, I try to make sense of it using a language that is more familiar to try to make sense of it; I usually default to Portuguese. I'm posting my attempt at finding a similar structure here in case anyone might find it helpful.

As I understand it, based on the omitted verbal noun structure mentioned by scilling, "D'imir mé iománaíocht agus mé [a bheith] ansin." would be similar to the following scenario in Portuguese, changing the sport to soccer since hurling has no translation:

«Eles jogavam à bola e eu lá,» which would translate to "They were playing soccer, and there I [was]." Similarly, the verbal noun was omitted. You might put it in: «Eles jogavam à bola e eu a estar lá» = "They were playing soccer, and I being there," although it feels like the verb would need a complement of sorts. «Eles jogavam à bola e eu a dizer que não podiam.» = "They were playing soccer, and I telling them that they couldn't [play soccer]."

Admittedly, though, this kind of construction in Portuguese, is not really used when the subject is the same in both clauses, as it would be assumed that "I" was there if "I" played hurling.


For the “while” meaning of agus, the full clause would be … agus mé a bheith ansin (“… while I to be there”), but a bheith is typically omitted. (Other infinitive-type verbal nouns wouldn’t be omitted there, though.)


No, it wouldn't work there. This structure is hard to explain.


Nuar a bhí mé ann???


If you were being asked to translate "I played hurling while I was there" from English into Irish, you could indeed use nuair a bhí mé ann (and most English speakers would default to that translation). The point of this Irish to English exercise, though, is to introduce you to a common construction in Irish, where agus isn't being used as a conjunction meaning "and", so that when you encounter this construction elsewhere, you will understand it.

With practice, you might even think to use this construction when translating from English into Irish.

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