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  5. "Thank you, grandfather!"

"Thank you, grandfather!"

Translation:Tapadh leibh a sheanair!

December 9, 2019



Why is it sometimes leat and other times leibh, and what determines the use of either one?


One is polite and the other is informal.

There's more information on it in the lesson notes and I also wrote a reasonably detailed post on the discussion thread here.



Leibh = formal/plural Leat = informal/singular


English has two features which make it unusual: firstly there is no polite plural; secondly, the second person singular and second person plural has collapsed to only a second person "You", although some dialects retain the distinction. SO how does this help? Gaidhlig makes both distinctions, so if you mean only a singular 'you' AND you are INFORMAL with them, use 'tu' and singular second person forms such as LEAT, ORT, AGAD...etc If you are polite or you are talking to many, then you sibh and plural forms, such as LEIBH. The person is shewing respect to his grandfather, by choosing to use the formal, polite, plural form. I hope this helps, because it is throughout Gaidhlig and is found in other languages.


"You" used to be the formal as well as the plural, just like Gaidhlig -- and German. In fact, we lost the singular informal "thee" because people started teaching their kids to address all strangers as "you" for great of making a mistake!


Why do word require an "a" before them and some don't thats been triping me up alot


You put an 'a' before a noun if you are adressing it. If you are just talking ABOUT it you don't need the vocative. Vocative: when addressing someone/something, put an 'a' before it, unless the word already starts with a vowel.


Same same, I don't understand when do we need to put an "a" or not...


It's a feature of the vocative case. If you have a wee read of the Tips and Notes, you'll get a brief explanation :)



it is a vocative participle, in short. So, if you address someone, you use 'a' before, which causes lenition of the name, if possible. So, Calum is the normal case of the name, you ask how Calum is, you use 'a Chalum'. The addressing 'a' followed by lenition of Calum. Exception, Gaidhlig drops the 'a' before a name with a vowel, Ciamar a tha thu Iain? Iain is addressed but 'a' is dropped because of a leading vowel. Lastly, not all names are capable of lenition or rather letters.


Go to the tips page Joanne linked and click the table of contents, and go the the "names" section. It gets easier I swear- you just have to put the time in!


Why the need of formal language with your grandparents?


I think you use it with anyone older than you -- that's what the tips & notes say.


Seanair is a contraction of sean-athair, old father, how about 'Bodach!' Used a bit jokingly, as the original meaning, is not so nice, but it can be used as an informal name for the old boy, Bha am bodach na chadal air an t-sòfa.


When thank you grandfather is in English how are supposed to know which one to use Tapadh leat or leibh


It will always be tapadh leibh if it is for a grandparent, as formal is used for people older than you or when addressing multiple people at once.


Thank you for replying to my question

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