https://www.duolingo.com/MrGWallCymraeg

Pronounciation / Ynganu

If you'd like to get some more practice with your ynganu, then this five minute video on WelshPlus on YouTube is short, sharp, and snappy :)

Cymraeg is an almost completely phonetic language, so the first thing to do is to get the alphabet (yr wyddor) learnt - this will stop you from trying to pronounce Welsh words through your own, native alphabet. The above link's video will help you come on leaps and bounds before getting stuck into the rest of the course. Also pay close attention to ch dd ff ng ll ph rh th as they are all one letter in Cymraeg and therefore will sound differently; "t" is pronounced "tuh" but "th" like "the".

Pob lwc!

2 years ago

72 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/het_aapje
het_aapje
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Thanks for the link, I think I can finally pronounce ll quite well and now my middle name too XD

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LangForThought
LangForThought
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Wat is jouw andere naam?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PfifltriggPi
PfifltriggPi
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When you are talking Dutch in the Welsh forum. Come to think about it, when there is a "Welsh Forum". Duo is awesome. And have a lingot for the Dutch.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LangForThought
LangForThought
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Dank je! Diolch!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/het_aapje
het_aapje
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Eén van de "awkward" welsh namen met twee "ll" XD maar Ik zal niet zeggen :P

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LangForThought
LangForThought
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Ben jij welsh?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/het_aapje
het_aapje
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Ja, een beetje :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/truelefty
truelefty
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Wow, how is it that I understand Dutch?? >.<

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LangForThought
LangForThought
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Dat is zo kool! Ik ben niet, maar ik vind de taal heel leuk.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/het_aapje
het_aapje
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Ik ook! :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User
A_User
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Me too! :-)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NiaRoberts5
NiaRoberts5
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Ik vind het zo leuk dat wij kunnen in het nederlands communiceren op een Welsh discussie. Welsh is mijn moedertaal maar ik probeer ook nederlands te leren - ik woondde vijf jaren lang in Den Haag maar dat was nu vijf-en-twintig jaar geleden en ik vond dat ik begon mijn nederlands te vergeten (voordat ik Duolingo vond!)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GeoffBache

I find pronouncing "wy" to be the hardest thing about Welsh pronunciation. The explanations say a long oo followed by a short i, and sometimes it sounds like that, but other times it sounds more like "oi". Is there a rule about how to pronounce it?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraRudolp

Depends what part of the country you live in. I say 'oy' others say 'we'. If you listen to the beautiful song, Myfanwy, you'll hear it pronounced Muh van wee and Muh van oy in the same song.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/otsogutxi
otsogutxi
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I'd also like to know how to pronounce llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch too if that's possible!

and thanks for the awesome link!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JeffA2
JeffA2
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It's pronounced just as it's spelled!

That sounds like a joke, but it is actually true. Welsh spelling is surprisingly regular once you get used to it, except maybe for the big vowel clusters.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/allenfrang

For me "y" is usually rather unpredictable in its pronunciation

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RTDE91
RTDE91
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It's pronounced 'uh' unless it's in the last syllable of word, in which case it is pronounced 'ee'. In compound words like Brynhyfryd (Bryn + Hyfryd) you'd have to look at the words that have been put together to make the new word to work out the correct pronounciation.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ibisc
ibisc
Mod
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Have you watched the pronunciation videos that we recommend? They are well worth looking at regularly as you follow the course. Look on the web for 'youtube welsh plus pronunciation' to find them quickly if you do not have the link already.

y is pronounced as /i/ in the final syllable of multi-syllable words and in single syllable words, or otherwise as an English /uh/.

There are some exceptions, especially with the following very common, short, single-syllable words where the y is always pronounced as /uh/: fy, dy, y, yr, yn

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mwyaren
mwyaren
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I can pronounce it, it's great at parties. along with eyjafjallajökull.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User
A_User
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What?!?!?! How can one even say a word like that?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JeffA2
JeffA2
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For an experienced speaker all the individual sounds are clearly indicated in the spelling. But a bigger problem, I think, is actually remembering the word. I'd probably get half-way through and forget what was next.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User
A_User
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Yeah, me too. :-)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mwyaren
mwyaren
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uhm, y'know, normally. it's not like it's Klingon, it's perfectly pronounceable.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User
A_User
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If you know how. :-) I suppose you can even say Rindfleischetikettierungsüberwachungsaufgabenübertragungsgesetz if you know how. :-)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User
A_User
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What about Menneskerettighetsorganisasjonene? Or Realisationsvinstbeskattning? Or even Lentokonesuihkuturbiinimoottoriapumekaanikkoaliupseerioppilas?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mwyaren
mwyaren
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yep, I noticed when I googled them to be sure I recognised the languages correctly. ;p I'm not a longest-words geek, it's just that Welsh and Icelandic are very phonetic and thus easy to pronounce if you only know the respective sounds of their letters. btw., 'll' in both languages is very similar.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mwyaren
mwyaren
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probably, although my superpowers do not extend to German. ;p

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mwyaren
mwyaren
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Norwegian, Swedish, and Finnish? you really overestimate me. XD I could have a decent go at the first two, I think. Finnish - nonononono.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User
A_User
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Yep. I cheated and found a list of the longest words in various European languages. :-D They actually use the Finnish one in the air force, apparently.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo
mizinamo
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Hey! Klingon has a completely phonetic writing system as well - like Welsh, it's perfectly pronounceable once you learn what each letter is pronounced like, and like Welsh, some individual letters of the alphabet are written with more than one character (e.g. ch, tlh, ng, gh in Klingon).

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/truelefty
truelefty
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But that's Icelandic, ftw

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mwyaren
mwyaren
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yes it is, but it kind of falls into the same category of unpronounceable foreign placenames.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/truelefty
truelefty
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xD At least that is more pronounceable than llanfairetc. haha

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PolyglotCiro
PolyglotCiro
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btw

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LeviPolasak
LeviPolasak
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FTW means f*** the world, or for the win

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/israelpolasak
israelpolasak
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No it means For the win but ok....

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PolyglotCiro
PolyglotCiro
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laughing

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/FaizalZahid
FaizalZahid
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https://www.duolingo.com/AaronKBrown
AaronKBrown
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Step one: take a deep breath and fill your lungs with air.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/daughterofAlbion
daughterofAlbion
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When I was in primary school (NOT in Wales!) my teacher made sure we could all pronounce this...

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RTDE91
RTDE91
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th is pronounced like the th in "think",

dd is pronounced like the th in "the".

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JaejoonShin

Learning alphabet really helps me pronounce correctly. Whatever they think, when they hear me pronounce Cymraeg. OTL

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ieuan-Jones
Ieuan-Jones
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Can't manage to roll my "r"s at all, anyone got any tips?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ibisc
ibisc
Mod
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Try these ideas for trilling your r's - http://www.wikihow.com/Roll-Your-%22R%22s - and perhaps begin with words that contain tr... or dr... Eldra; trawst; pydredd; trist; dramor.... where the tip of your tongue will already be close to the correct position near your teeth.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deyan161
Deyan161
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Diolch fawr. I can't roll r's at all, I'll try wiki.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AaronKBrown
AaronKBrown
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You can, you just haven't discovered how. (I'm assuming you have a tongue.) Any new sound, one you didn't learn as a child, takes time and practice to learn.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deyan161
Deyan161
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I'm sure you're right. But I had it drummed into me as a very small child that I couldn't roll my r's - my sister could, but I couldn't. Like it was an inherited trait. Any other sound English speakers "can't make", like ch or ll for instance, I've had no trouble with - but then I was never taught that I personally couldn't. So basically I've got to crack some fairly deep conditioning. Am working on it!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraRudolp

Practise - big breath and rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr like a drill. Bydd yn dod, hyd yn oed os ydych chi'n siarad fel Jonathon Woss! :)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/moloughl
moloughl
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Try saying "Around the rugged rock the ragged rascal ran".

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ibisc
ibisc
Mod
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Neu, yn Gymraeg: 'Rholiodd Lowri i lawr yr allt'!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PaCa826187
PaCa826187
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My trilled Rs aren't great but if your tongue is near the roof of your mouth and you breath in a certain way (sorry, a bit vague), it will 'flutter' a bit against your palate. I don't know how 'Welsh' my Rs sound but they certainly sound less like English like that.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/FDWhitefoot

I know your pain. No matter what I do, including coaching from my Welsh schooled children, I cant nail the 'r' in 'gwyrdd'

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Gee790097

Do it loud! The softer you are the harder it is.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/_-C1-_
_-C1-_
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Thanks for the link! I'd be lost without it! ;D I'm having trouble with the letters that must be pronounced with no voice. I can't figure it out! Maybe if I just encounter what whole words sound like with those letters, or watch those parts of the video again while listening very closely..

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ibisc
ibisc
Mod
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Voiced and unvoiced - place your finger lightly on your Adam's apple and you will feel it vibrate when saying the voiced sound at the beginning of each of these voiced/unvoiced pairs of English and Welsh words:

  • these, threes - ddinas, thre
  • vole, foal - fel, ffin (or compare the f, ff in the English 'of, off' - Welsh has those same sounds for the letters f, ff)
  • bowl, pole - bola, polyn
  • dine, tine - dîm, tîm
  • gain, cane - gegin, cacen

etc...

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/_-C1-_
_-C1-_
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Thank you very much!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/allenfrang

Hello all! I recently found this Youtube channel, where they post "Welsh word of the day" videos. I find it does help me with pronunciation, although the choice of words can be unpredictable, I see that as a plus. https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLPJe_Al5lXCv45aJ8zGOiE0bAkKRzsXOf

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ieuan-Jones
Ieuan-Jones
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Also, watching through that series of videos again, I just realised it would teach you to pronounce my name wrong, so worth baring in mind that things may be pronounced differently from the "standard" pronunciations in that video.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraRudolp

Do you pronounce your name as Yay ann or Y eye ann? I know a few and even the Welsh speakers use both pronunciations.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deyan161
Deyan161
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(This is a reply to yours on rolling rrr's 'cos there's no reply button come up there). That's going to be my nighttime practise regime for the next few months! Thanks for the tip!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraRudolp

Croeso Deyan! It really does work. Dal ati!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ieuan-Jones
Ieuan-Jones
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It depends on from where in Wales you come, which pronunciation you use. At this point I'm not too fussed :)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JulieJeste
JulieJeste
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Can someone explain the function of the caret (^) in certain Welsh words? Why is the word for water written as "dŵr" instead of just "dwr?" How does it change the pronunciation?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ibisc
ibisc
Mod
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The circumflex accent shows that the vowel is always pronounced as a long vowel. Unmarked vowels may be long or short.

This is explained in the WelshPlus pronunciation videos that we recommend - see earlier posts in this discussion or just look on the web for ‘welsh plus youtube pronunciation basics’.

The meaning if some words can change depending on the accent being there or not - look up these examples in a dictionary:

  • gem, gêm
  • gŵydd, gwŷdd
  • gŵyr, gwŷr
  • glan, glân
  • man, mân
1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraRudolp

That isn't terribly helpful for the dipthongs. How does the sound differ in 'gwydd' if the circumflex is over the w or the y (oy, oo, aw, ee) ? Very difficult for learners and speakers in different parts of Wales. I have heard 'oy' and 'wee' for an egg. I'd be grateful for your pronunciation of goose/presence/ trees/plough/ crooked/men.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ibisc
ibisc
Mod
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More or less:

  • gŵydd - /gOOYdd/. As in hwyl
  • gwŷdd - /gWEEdd/

(dd as voiced ‘th-‘ in there, these, the, as usual)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraRudolp

Diolch am helpu :)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JulieJeste
JulieJeste
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Diolch! Unfortunately, my American ear isn't really picking up on some of these vowel differences yet. I've played the videos at least twice now and some of the long and short vowel sounds - especially for "a" and "e" - sound exactly alike to me.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraRudolp

Don't worry too much about it - as long as you have the general sound. If it's any consolation some of the subtle differences are also lost on my old Welsh ears!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SaraRudolp

No it isn't - th is sounded softly like the th in thank - not hard - as in the.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Joe733089
Joe733089
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Speaking out loud is no problem the sound becomes easy once you get used to it. Which for me was fairly quick. For the most part it all came quickly for me but some of the spelling took a bit to get used to. I love Cymraeg it's a beautiful and fun language to learn.

11 months ago
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