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  5. "Are you living in Islay, Lex…

"Are you living in Islay, Lexie?"

Translation:A bheil thu a' fuireach ann an Ìle, a Leagsaidh?

April 5, 2020



Hi there, why is it "a bheil" (no apostrophe) but "a' fuireach" (with apostrophe)? I'm flummoxed.


In the "a' fuireach" context the a' is an abbreviation for ag because the following word doesn't begin with a vowel. Compare "ag iarraidh". So the apostrophe is there to stand for the missing g. In the "a bheil" context there is no missing letter.


Because "a' fuireach" is a verbal noun, whereas "a bheil" is the (present tense) question form of "bi".

When the word begins with a vowel the verbal noun is formed with "ag" and when it begins with a consonant it is formed with "a' ".


I don't understand why this is translated with 'a Leagsaidh' and in other places, the very same construct is without the 'a'. It's inconsistent. I understand the use of 'a...' but I guess I don't understand when to use it and when not to.


The 'a' is used when addressing another person directly. It is not used when describing or speaking about another person.


Also the "vocative a" that's used when addressing someone gets dropped when their name starts with a vowel.

So it'll be "Halò, a Leaghsaid" but "Halò Ealasaid"

See the tips for this lesson here: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/gd/Names/tips-and-notes

They're not accessible from the phone app, but you can get to them from your phone or desktop browser by going to: https://www.duolingo.com (login first time) and clicking on the lesson you want tips for, then choose "tips".

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