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  5. "Everybody is wanting potatoe…

"Everybody is wanting potatoes and herring."

Translation:Tha a h-uile duine ag iarraidh buntàta agus sgadan.

February 8, 2020



Can somebody break down 'everybody' for me, please? a h-uile duine... duine = person, uile = all, a = the? and h = I have no idea why there's an 'h'.


a h-uile is a package that means 'every' here a h-uile duine = every person or everyone or everybody. Exactly why the a is there, I can't tell you. It may have been lost in the mists of time, or it may be known to linguists who study it, but 'a' does a lot of work in the Gaelic. It does different things depending on context and use and to be honest it is probably easier at this time to remember a h-uile as a package, where yes as others have speculated the h is there as a spacer between the a and the u (apparently, according to Mark's dictionary if the noun following it begins with a vowel it can get an h- in front of it too)


I would think its to do with making the pronunctiation of the two vowels a and u easier by inserting u. It's the hyphens and apostrophes that get me. It must be a nightmare texting in Gaelic.


Yes, I've understood now that vowels don't like to hang out together, so an 'h' is slipped in between whenever possible. Fair enough. Apostrophes are a whole other mystery yet to be revealed ;)


It feels like the apostrophes are where vowels have been dropped to avoid vowel collisions, instead of adding that h like in other instances. But I could be wrong entirely.


Oddly a lot of the apostrophes are where consonants would come together. Tha mi a' dol, tha mi a' bruidhinn, but tha mi ag òl and tha mi ag ithe. But where they show up in the definite articles yes, it's vowel drop to avoid vowel collisions.


Mine said I had a typo that it should have been Tha na h-uile instead of Tha a h-uile. Na instead of a. What is the difference?


So is there not a plural for potato?

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