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  5. "Isabel and Iain are sad now."

"Isabel and Iain are sad now."

Translation:Tha Iseabail agus Iain brònach a-nis.

December 1, 2019



When do you use "a-nis" as opposed to "a nis". I keep getting this one wrong.


The full spelling is actually a-nis, similar to a-màireach (tomorrow) and a-rithist (again). Duolingo often gives you "a" and "nis" buttons as options - and if there's no separate "a-nis" button you can choose, you have to put "a" and "nis" together. You can assume there's an "invisible hyphen" there.


I had an 'a-nis' button as well as separate 'a' and 'nis' buttons... And apparently the 'a-nis' button was the wrong choice!


It usually accepts it even though there is no sound attached to it.


Nope, when using tiles, the software will mark you wrong if you chose the tile with the hyphenated word, even when the hyphenated word is correct. To get credit for a correct answer, one has to chose two tiles that together make up the correct hyphenated word and leave out the hyphen. If the correct word is "a-nis" Duolingo will offer tiles that say "a-nis," "a," and "nis." Pick the one tile with "a-nis" and you will be marked wrong, even though you are right. You have to pick "a" and then "nis" to receive credit for a correct answer. This is true for all exercises with hyphenated words and tiles in this course. Avoid the tiles with hyphenated words, people, they are a trap! :)


Quite so. But it does not mean I was wrong, as things may have changed since I posted 13 months ago. In fact it is quite possible that the bug had just been introduced, which is why I was unaware of it at the time. Because they are now forced to provide the hyphenated and two-word tiles, it means that if you see a word in both forms you can be absolutely certain (at least in my experience) that it is the correct word. A word that is only available hyphenated is likely to be wrong – and even it were the correct answer you would be stuck!


I haven't been given any hyphenated tiles for at least a week now, but as of the last time I was given one (about a week or so ago) they worked fine for me. They would not play a sound file, but they were still accepted as correct.

There was even one time (about three weeks ago) when I selected (a) (nis) (a-nis) all three tiles and it still allowed it as correct!


I put their names the wrong way around and failed. :(


A bheil thu brònach a-nis? (Are you sad now?). Sorry, not meaning to be rude. Just wanted to take the chance to practice my Scottish Gaelic.


What does a bheil mean? I thought it was, Tha Thu brònach a-nis?


That means

'You are sad now?'

In some languages, like Welsh and French, you can just add a question mark to a statement to make it into a question but it is not normal in English or Gaelic. We are used to having to use a different structure for questions and negatives

I went
I did not go

and we are also used to the verb 'to be' being pretty irregular in many languages

am, are, is, was, were, be, been

So put those two together and the Gaelic is not that odd, even if it does take a bit of getting used to

tha thu you are
a bheil thu? are you?
chan eil thu you aren't
nach eil thu? aren't you?



Thank you so much, this should be a tip in front of the tree.


This also says you can use "dhuilich" instead of "brònach" so i put dhuilich and it was expecting Brònach and marked me down. Tha mi brònach...


'dhuilich' shouldn't be accepted here. Just 'brònach' or 'tùrsach'.


If dhuilich cannot be used why does it offer it as an alternative? What's the difference between the two?


My understanding is that duilich is more like “sorry”, i.e., you use it to apologize—Tha mi duilich. It’s sad, but more specific.

The word lookup feature is more like a dictionary entry— there may be more than one word that maps to that general meaning, but not all of them work in any particular sentence.


Correct spelling for an-dràsta, not an-dràsda.


An-dràsda is a valid, if rare and old spelling - see Dwelly. D


Yes, in fact, that’s how I learned it— an-dràsta looks weird to me, too.


Yes. d is the normal way to write a /t̪/ sound in Gaelic when not at the beginning of a word. It is not obvious why it was changed to an-dràsta. Perhaps it was influenced by Irish spelling (adrásta) or by the way we write a /t/ sound in English. D


I don't have a grave accent on my computer so I have been using ei etc. to compensate, Can you suggest something else, please?


Just hold the Alt key and type these 4 numbers, then release the alt key: alt0224 is à, alt0232 is è, alt0236 is ì, alt0242 is ò, alt0249 is ù


Tapadh leat, but that is quite a typing production just for one tiny accent, LOL!


It’s not just for one tiny accent— it’s for the whole letter including the accent: à, è, ì, ò, ù are considered different letters from a, e, i, o, u. Anyway, once you get used to doing it, it’s no big deal; I use Alt codes for German characters all the time on my desktop.

However, it’s now not necessary— the accent tiles are onscreen now, right below the text entry window. Just click the one you want.

If you are on a mobile or a tablet, iPad, etc., a long touch on the vowel will bring up all the accented ones to choose from.


The accent tiles are available in Duo now. Yay!


What kind of computer? Pretty much anything that's reasonably current can give you access to accents, but details depend on the type of device. This might get you started: https://gaelic.co/accented-letters/


I cannot get a-nis to register. There is no sound when I select it making my answers are wrong


Hey, can you report the sentence instead? We can take a look at it in the incubator that way.


There's no sound for a-nis because the system balks at hyphenated words. But it should still register as correct even though it doesn't play the sound. As long as the whole answer is entered correctly it should be okay. If your answers are coming up wrong it probably isn't the a-nis that causes the problem


It seems that when people are using tiles to do the translation, tiles that have a hyphenated word will be rejected (marked wrong) by the Duolingo system, even when they are correct. So, for example, if the correct answer requires the word "a-nis" and the tile for "a-nis" is there and chosen, the Duolingo system will mark the selection as wrong, even though it is not wrong. One has to choose the tile that says "a" and the tile that says "nis" in order to get credited for a correct answer. Isn't software wonderful? LOL


I don't see what i got wrong


We can’t see it either— can you tell us what you typed, and what message Duo gave you? Or post a screenshot?


We do not need a reflexive pronoun here, such as "iad" or whatever Gaelic word means "upon them"? (Irish would require that kind of wording, I do believe).


I'm not that good at Irish, so please correct me if am wrong, or if there is another structure I do not know about, but I think you would say

Tá brón ar Isabel agus Iain anois

But brònachbrón, as brònach is an adjective ('sad') but brón is a noun ('sadness').

Type Adjective Noun
Gaelic Tha I&I brònach Tha bròn air I&I
Irish Tá I⁊I brónach Tá brón ar I⁊I
English calque Are I&I sad Is sadness on I&I

Both structures are technically possible in both languages. It just happens that in the particular case of sadness, the versions in bold are used. We use the second structure with some feelings, such as fear (tha eagal air I&I), but just not with sadness.

As far as I know there is no structure that uses pronouns reflexively here, but you may be thinking of orra = orthu = 'on them', which we would use if we wanted to replace I&I with a pronoun. D


Does anyone know why and is sometimes pronounced "a-gus" and sometimes pronounced "i-yus?" Is it an accent or a grammar thing?


Yes it is just dialect. g → y is not a very common diachronic sound change in Gaelic (meaning a change over time) but it is very common in the history of English:

day related to German Tag and Gaelic an-diugh (today)
yard related to garden

You do see it in synchronically in Gaelic (that is when it changes in different circumstances rather than over time) when a slender g gets lenited, as in càise gheal 'white cheese'. D


I wish name spelling wasn't such a major component to the lessons. I concentrate on the sentence and vocab, but sometimes mess up on the names, which irks me.


Same! I got the sentence correct but misspelled Isabel. Tbh the scottish person i know with that name spells it Isobel!


When you get that item again, do the same thing, on purpose, then use the wee Report flag to give the course mods a heads up. It’s still in development, so any feedback will help them.


Just started the plus and find words from nowhere, which you must put in a srntence or translate, without any orior appearancevof them!

Irritating and disheartening! Had enough already tonight and hardly started!


How do you translate a name


Is ther a difference between "a nis" and "a-nis?"


Edited after reading Joanne's reply:

A-nis is correct and *a nis incorrect, but there is a good reason for your confusion.

In the past hyphens in adverbials like this were not standardized, and Duolingo used what was generally in use (with a hyphen in a-nis). However, the recent GOC (Gaelic Orthographic Convention) has decreed, with no obvious logic, that most adverbials, such as this one, a-nis 'now' should be hyphenated, but that three, an seo 'here', an sin 'there' and an siud 'there in the distance' shouldn't. No one here understands the logic. Duolingo is in the process of standardizing. This is discussed here.

In addition, the hyphen causes technical problems for Duolingo but it is not too much of a problem as you will not lose a mark if you leave the hyphen out. D


It's always been a-nis on the course. Occasionally it appears split on tiles, but we don't accept a nis as an alternative (you shouldn't be marked down for it, though).


Thank you. I have edited my response. I hope you agree with it now. D


I am surprised that the 'tha' doesn't get changed for plurality of subject. In English it would be "Isobel and Iain ARE...". Is there no plural form in gaelic?


Yes, it is surprising. Most Indo-European languages have verb-subject agreement, much more extensive than in English. Even the ancestor language of Old Irish, and the cousin language of Welsh generally have the full set of 6. I expect you will meet one example of agreement right at the end of the course, and the sister language of Irish has an extra tense where it occurs.

So that means that Gaelic, Scots and English are really the exceptions in having virtually none. (I don't know about Manx.)

I always find it intriguing how often language features are shared by neighbours, even when it does not appear to be a borrowed feature.


why has it corrected me for sayinf "duilich" instead of "brònach", if it offers both as answers?


What do you mean by offering both as answers? If you mean that these two translations are offered in the drop-down hints then these are possible translations in different circumstances, not translations that are guaranteed valid in one circumstance. That said, 'sad' is a very rare meaning of duilich, and I cannot think when I might use it, apart perhaps from impersonally, tha e duilich gu... 'it is sad that...' as a different way of saying 'it is a pity that', and I would have thought that giving this translation on a beginners' course is likely to do more harm than good.

A check of the questions shows that there are 14 questions using the word duilich and in none of these is sad an appropriate translation, However, in 6 of them, people are reporting being confused by the tooltips. So I think the evidence is clear: this translation in the tooltips is doing far more harm than good and someone should report it to see if the mods agree that it should be removed.


The way I have learned tha mi duilich is as an apology, meaning “I am sorry” for doing something, or expressing regret.

Am Faclair Beag gives four definitions for duilich: 1. sorry; 2. difficult, hard; 3. regrettable; 4. sad.. So, although “sad” is one meaning of duilich, it’s not the primary one.

The mouse-over hints are not really an answer key per se; it’s more what you would see in a dictionary lookup— not all the possible definitions work in a specific sentence.

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