I'm not yet far enough in my tree to have learned this way of phrasing. I'm guessing Duolingo is hiccuping.
Is it safe to presume from the example that tá ag [verb in infinitive] is the Irish present continuous tense construction?
Several things: There is no infinitive in Irish. The form that comes after ag is called the verbal noun, and can double as a noun in some cases.
The structure to form an infinitive is x a VN. But, yes, the way to form the present continuous tense is ag VN where VN is the verbal noun
Thank you. I'm sure I'll encounter it later in the notes, but for now, I learned a lot from that.
You're welcome. Also, just some clarification. Rith is an odd case in that the VN is the same as the root form. Often it'll change, such as bualadh from Buail.
And the root form in Irish is the second-person singular imperative. It's like the English command 'Run', except said to only one person (There's a different form for multiple people)
I've noticed as much; I've been looking up the VNs to write down in my notepads for training - though I never realised they weren't infinitives until now. A little irregularity just makes it slightly more challenging. :)
Is there any reason for the root and the 2ps imperative sharing a form, other than historical linguistic accident?
Causality for irregularities in languages is usually impossible to determine with any satisfactory degree of accuracy. Often with reference to older texts, forms can be seen "to evolve", but it is sometimes difficult to know if or at what point the current form co-existed but was not recorded. Today's "slang" might become tomorrow's written standard.
I had a teacher who had a theory that the most frequently used verbs in a language tended to be the most irregular ('wear and tear'). I think this has some merit in the case of Irish. Samuel Johnson said that languages inevitably tend towards decline (?lingustic entropy). Extrapolating, the end result is a new language (?linguistic speciation).
With specific reference to verbal nouns that share their form with the imperative or stem, these, among others, are considered irregularities. See here http://nualeargais.ie/gnag/verbnom.htm#bildung
There are many forms that overlap, as there are in English, which as we know is crazy.
"English was invented by people, not computers, and it reflects the creativity of the human race (which, of course, isn’t a race at all)."
Many thanks for your answer, dubhais, and especially for the first link. I know how hard irregularities can be to trace, hence the question - and it's always fun to compare how they work in different languages. :)
I honestly don't know the reason. Maybe An Lon Dubh Beag will get on and comment.
Which parts of it do you have a problem with? That's how they pronounce deirfiúr in Connacht (the stress stays on the first syllable, whereas in Munster there is more stress on the syllable that has a fada in it). The intonation is a bit mechanical, but it's not particularly awful.
The pronunciation in this exercise really is awful.
For me I had trouble with rith - thought that was the logical word to but there, but thought that recording sounded more like a mysterious bhre . Wow - on that other exercise - I like your assessment!
After some twenty years studying Irish this is the first time hearing do with a broad o pronounced as dí and so clipped that it was mistaken to be some kind of dialectical variation of pronouncing dheirfiúr. Happy to learn new things but Duolingo would be kinder to have presented the pronunciation previously in the presence of the text. That said, I might remember this if the same exercise is presented a few more times. So if you see no more posts here it's because I never saw this exercise ever again.
It has been five months during which I go back to refresh sections regularly, yet this sentence has not come back as a "type what you heard" exercise. I wonder if it was decided to correct it?
Same here. It completely disappeared into "deirfiúr" according to my ears
It sounds like “daoirfiur” rather than “do dheirfiur”. I would have expected something like doy-YER-i-fur.
deirfiúr is only "DER-i-fur" in Donegal. In Miunster and parts of Connnacht deirfiúr is pronounced "dri-foor", with the stress on the first syllable in Connacht and on the second syllable in Munster.
In other parts of Connacht, it is pronounced "drower".
Many European languages don't differentiate between the simple present ("runs") and the present progressive/present continuous ("running"), and translations from those languages into English often involve a translation from the simple present to the present progressive.
Both English and Irish have distinct forms for the simple present ("runs" - "ritheann") and the present progressive/present continuous ("running" - "ag rith"), and you can't translate from the simple present in English ("runs") to the present progressive in Irish ("ag rith").
This distinction comes naturally to English speakers and Irish speakers, but it can be confusing for speakers who don't make the distinction in their own language.
Combining "ag" with the verbal noun for the verb constructs the equivalent of adding -ing on an English (or Anglisized) verb.
There is no "d" sound in dheirfiúr - the séimhiú in dheirfiúr changes the initial sound.
The "d" that you hear after tá comes from do.