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  5. "Cha robh mi ag òl Disathairn…

"Cha robh mi ag òl Disathairne."

Translation:I was not drinking on Saturday.

January 4, 2020



So, would this only be used to translate an English progressive form, as you have translated it here, or coild it also translate an English simple past? Is there a non-progressive form im Gaelic as there is in Irish?


There is: dh'òl (mi, thu &c) - cha do dh'òl - an do dh'òl? - nach do dh'òl? The dh' is however only used before vowels, consonants get lenited instead: for seinn (sing) it's: sheinn - cha do sheinn - an do sheinn? - nach do sheinn? (So actually you also use the dh' before f followed by a vowel, as the lenited f gets mute and the word then begins with a vowel: for fuirich (wait) it's: dh'fhuirich - cha do dh'fhuirich - an do dh'fhuirich? - nach do dh'fhuirich? There are also a few verbs with irregular forms, but I guess the course will cover these in due time.)


Could you explain for those of us who are amateurs?


Well in English you have simple tenses (I don't drink alcohol = I'm a teetotaller) and progressive ones (I'm not drinking alcohol = not just now, have had too much already tonight). In Gaelic you only have the "progressive" present tense (tha mi ag òl) for both the English ones, but both past (dh'òl mi - I drank, bha mi ag òl - I was drinking) and future ones (òlaidh mi - I'll drink, bidh mi ag òl - I'll be drinking).

Incidentally one confusing thing is that Gaelic uses the future tense where English uses the simple present to describe something happening repeatedly, so that "I drink beer every Saturday" translates as "Òlaidh mi leann gach DiSathairne", literally "I WILL drink beer every Saturday" - even if one has been already following this habit for decades.


I really wish i hadnt seen that answer lol.. newbie here!

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