A wee tip that helped me a lot with spelling in Gaelic
So I think this is one of the things you usually learn first in beginner Gaelic classes and I'm sure it'll be added to the beta eventually, but for those who don't know yet, there are two kinds of vowels in Gaelic. There's slender (i, e) and broad (a, o, u). A really important rule is caol ri caol is leathann ri leathann, or "broad with broad and slender with slender." This means that if you have a single constonant with a vowel on either side, then they are ALWAYS both broad vowels or both slender vowels.
e.g. say you are trying to remember how to spell "Ciamar" in "Ciamar a tha sibh?" Well, you know right away that "Caimar" and "Camiar" etc MUST be wrong, because they have a broad/slender combination around the 'm'! Some other basic words that I've found this rule helps with are "duilich," "tioraidh, " "madainn," "tapadh" etc but I'm sure there will be many more. It doesn't always give you the full answer, but it rules out a lot of wrong combinations! If you just remember the location of one or two vowels, you can often use this rule to fill in the blanks.
Hope this helps! Happy learning!
You can read more here (broad vs. slender also affects pronunciation) : http://www.akerbeltz.org/index.php?title=Broad_vs_Slender
Not always. There are exceptions to this rule though (often former compound nouns that have amalgamated into one word) which are all valid by GOC, so the spelling rule is not a 100% guarantee a word is or isn't spelled correctly or not.
- Diluain (formerly "Di Luain")
- airson (formerly "air son")
- esan ("e" + emphatic suffix)
- deànte (sort of past participle adjective from "dèan", this one might not be GOC tbh)