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  5. "Ciamar a tha thu, Iain? Chan…

"Ciamar a tha thu, Iain? Chan eil gu dona."

Translation:How are you, Iain? Not bad.

February 14, 2020



I think yes.
And the reason is that - grammatically correctly - ‘gu dona’ is an adverb.
The answer part is effectively short for saying ‘I’m not doing badly’.
Or ‘not badly’.
Gu + dona = badly.

It’s English that is irregular and hence your question:
In English, rather than using a grammatically regular adverb (badly), we use an adjective instead (bad), ie we say ‘I’m not doing bad’ or ‘not bad’.

Also applies with good/well. In standard British or Scottish English we’ve have tended to say “I’m well’ and it’s only comparatively recently that the US English ‘I’m good’ has crept in.


I'll try that thanks


Would American casual English have appropriated the double negative from Scottish Gaelic?


And here was me thinking that "nae bad" was a stereotypically Aberdeenshire response.

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