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  5. "Wales is a fine country."

"Wales is a fine country."

Translation:Gwlad braf ydy Cymru.

May 1, 2016

12 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jeff121271

Is there something wrong with trying to structure this like, "Mae Cymru yn gwlad braf"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ibisc

Not really - it just sounds a bit limp! The emphatic construction, as in the example, is used much more often in Welsh than in English.

(And it would be 'mae xxx yn wlad braf' - soft mutation of gwlad.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zjwelch

Is there something wrong with "Cymru ydy gwlad braf"? Wouldn't this just emphasize that it's wales instead of emphasizing the fine country part?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EricCulf

How come 'ydy' also makes sense? Isn't that just in questions?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ibisc

No, ydy/yw is used in other patterns as well.

Here, the sentence is an emphatic one, so the thing being emphasised - gwlad braf - is moved to the front of the sentence, just as we do with people's names or jobs and so on. If the sentence is started with a noun (including a name or a job title) or an adjective, then the verb-form is ydy/yw rather than mae:

  • Sioned yw hi - She is Sioned.
  • Meddyg yw hi - She is a doctor.
  • Meddyg da yw Sioned - Sioned is a good doctor.
  • Menyw dal ydy Sioned, nid un fer - Sioned is a tall woman, not a short one. (Emphasising the fact)

But:

  • Mae'r tywydd yn braf - The weather is fine. (No emphasis)
  • Mae Cymru'n wlad braf - Wales is a fine country. (But not emphasising it)
  • Mae Sioned yn dal - Sioned's tall. (But not emphatically so)

Emphasis is used much more often in Welsh than in English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/YmaSmitty

An interesting conversation, even if it is a year old. Thanks.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jess654627

This is interesting to me. In my American business writing class, we're often instructed to use "active voice" instead of "passive voice". And it seems odd (to me) that what is considered a passive voice in American English is more commonly used and considered "emphatic" in Welsh (and many other languages from what I can tell). Psycology presenting in languistic construction, w/ the focus placed on what info the culture deems most important?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LordLudich

Does saying "Iawn" instead of "Braf" work in this context?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ibisc

No, iawn is not generally used as an adjective to describe something in that way.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/johnWillia845851

As gwlad is feminine, why doesn't braf have a soft mutation to fraf?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ibisc

It is an exception - braf resists mutation.

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