"This is one swan."

Translation:Seo aon eala.

August 18, 2020

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Shouldn't it be "ehala"?


No. Why would you think it should?

The letter h doesn’t appear on its own in native Gaelic words (it shows up only as a lenition marker, as in bh, mh for /v/, etc.; and as h- pronounced /h/ only as a prefix before vowel in some contexts: na h-Alba of Scotland).

Also, native non-compound words follow the leathan ri leathan agus caol ri caol (broad with broad, slender with slender) rule. That means that on both sides of consonants might stand either only broad (a, u, o) or only slender (i, e) vowel characters, so you cannot have eha (or eta, or ema, etc.) in Gaelic.

eala is pronounced /(j)aɫə/, aon eala is /ɯːn´aɫə/ – the e at the beginning marks the /j/ or the slenderization of the /n/ in the previous word, the a marks that l in this word is the broad /ɫ/.

You can read more about this convention and pronunciation in Broad vs Slender on the Akerbeltz wiki.

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