January 28, 2016

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Can Cawl not be translated as stew as well?


According to the GPC (Geiriadur Prifysgol Cymru) Cawl: soup; pottage;broth; gruel fig. mixture, hotpotch, mess.

Yn ôl gweiadur.com: soup; broth; mess

Geiriadur yr Academi gives "Cawl" as a translation for "Stew", with various phrases using "cawl" being translated as stew.

I've certainly seen it for "stew" in at least one book.


The usual translation of cawl is 'soup' or, in Wales at least, 'cawl'.

Duo does not try and cover every possible translation of every word - it is not a dictionary or a thesaurus. We can only offer the most common translations as taught on introductory Welsh courses.


Cawl is Cawl. Cawl is not just soup. It's a very specific traditional Welsh Lamb Stew. The translation of "Cawl" should allow "Cawl" also.


Okay, I think you're confusing using one word in two languages and actually translating.

Cawl, the Welsh word means soup or broth. The English borrowing cawl means "traditional Welsh soup". (By the way traditional Welsh cawl isn't made with lamb, but bacon, lamb is a very recent thing.)

So the Welsh word cawl does not, therefore, translate as English "cawl" because the Welsh word is more general, and the English word is borrowed from Welsh to mean Welsh-soup. It's a habit of English to borrow foreign words and pretty much use it to stereotype.


I see what you're saying, but I (as a Welsh person, from the valleys) would say Cawl is Cawl, not Soup. Maybe this is an English language influence, however, I feel that it use in this manner is substantially popular enough that it warrants accepting Cawl as a possible translation anyway. Nice point about the bacon too, very interesting! I hadn't realised that it was traditionally any different from the way my grandmother used to make it.


I too am from the valleys and think of cawl as Welsh broth, but if you want to learn Welsh then you'll have to get used to using cawl to mean soup I'm afraid. You could always (in Welsh) say cawl Cymreig for our proper cawl.


Curious then. How would you translate "soup"?


Cawl is Welsh for "soup".


Yes, I understand that. I was wondering what dhanly uses for "soup" since it seems he likens "cawl" to only a specific type of soup, not soup in general. Perhaps I'm misreading.


quite agree. It's an insult to call my mamgu's cawl a soup. It is cawl. Soup can be a thin dreary thing. Cawl cannot.

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