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"Conas atá sé?"

Translation:How is it?

4 years ago

43 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/jgierbo2
jgierbo2
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Why is it atá and not tá?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnLonDubhBeag

atá = which is

Conas atá sé? = How which he is?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NiallT
NiallT
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"that", surely, rather than "which", as it has no pronominal meaning.

"Conas atá sé" = "How that he is?", meaning "How is it that he is?"

This is a bit similar to the French construction "Est-ce que...?"/"Qu'est-ce que...?"

Consider "Qu'est-ce que c'est?" means "What is it?" but is literally "What is it that it is?"

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnLonDubhBeag

I didn't know English had a well defined difference between "that" and "which"! Thanks!

EDIT: Would you mind explaining the pronominal meaning distinction between "which" and "that", just to confirm that "that" would be a better translation.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NiallT
NiallT
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Well it's not really "well defined", and my objection wasn't well expressed.

"Which" often (but not always) has a pronominal sense: eg "...and then I was granted the freedom of the city. Which was nice."

It is most common in this sort of "non-defining" clause, and "that"/zero-conjunction is more common in "defining" clauses. "the house that Jack built".

"Which", then, is potentially misleading when used in an artificial construction in English

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/smoshea

My two cents: typically, when "which" leads a dependent clause in English, it means that the information in the clause is not essential to the intended meaning of the sentence. You can almost imagine it as a parenthetical aside. Leading the same phrase with "that" implies that you are distinguishing something in particular.

To extend an example used above:

"The house that Jack built is still standing." (Unlike all the other houses, which fell down, Jack's house is still intact.)

"The house, which Jack built, is still standing." (The house is still standing. By the way, Jack built it! Doesn't he do great work?)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RaionaLeijon

While unfamiliar with the linguistic terms, I can share a tip from a copy editing class: The Comma Witch (or which, rather. It goes much better verbally).

The general rule being you use 'which' only when you are also using a comma, and you use 'that' when you are not. It was a fun learning device, as my professor drew a comma on the board and gave it a hat and broom.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/idshanks
idshanks
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Haha, well I guess we're going to begin early with the brain hurting for this language ;)

You've answered what it literally means, but it doesn't really, at least from the perspective of a native English speaker, make it any clearer why we use ‘atá’ and not simply ‘tá’. Is there any kind of explanation you can give to clarify in which situations either form applies?

Thanks in advance! :)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnLonDubhBeag

Conas is contraction of three words which originally meant "What state", so very literally it is:

What state which you are?

The only real explanation for it I can think of that might work is that Irish will not break VSO word order. So if some kind of question word like "Conas" comes first, the language will use "atá" so that the verb still comes first in a given clause.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hollajam
hollajam
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I am fairly new to Irish, so correct me if I am wrong, but from my studies whenever you have a question you need to add the particle "a" before the verb - this is the same particle for introducing relative clauses. Normally that particle is separate and causes lenition, but for "tá" it has been shortened to "atá". And if the copula "is" is implied, "a" can be left out too. For example, "Cad é sin?" = "What is that?"

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NiallT
NiallT
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Actually, the copula "is" is implied by every question word. "Cad [is] atá sin?" What is it that it is.

Note that the copula is dropped after negative and question particles too, so this is entirely regular and predictable.

Is fear mé Ní fear mé

etc.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MacCionaodha

I'm not entirelly certain but I think it may be due to the question form, It sounds weird the other way though !!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/FrJackHackett

Can it also be translated as "how is it?"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scilling
scilling
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Yes.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Joeslugs
Joeslugs
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Sé = he Sí = she

Am I correct or no?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scilling
scilling
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That’s correct.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/feyMorgaina
feyMorgaina
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I learned "Conas tá tú?" for "How are you?". Can this also be "Conas atá tú?" also? I was wondering why the audio for "Conas tá tú?" had the extra "a" sound in it.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scilling
scilling
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It’s properly Conas atá tú?, but in this instance atá is often shortened to — think of it as Conas ’tá tú?.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/feyMorgaina
feyMorgaina
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Thank you! Go raibh maith agat.

It's good to know that I'm not just hearing things that shouldn't be in the audio. (I guess I might not have been clear previously, I'm referring to audio from other Irish learning material I have.)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/cadenc10

I don't understand how it is pronounced.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Knocksedan

It's pronounced exactly as written - what part do you find confusing?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SanctMinimalicen
SanctMinimalicen
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One might also encounter Cén chaoi a bhfuil tú? in Connemara and Cad é mar atá tú? in Ulster.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jeff986592

The audio sounded wrong

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jeff986592

Duolingo gets mad I guess because when I reported that the audio was wrong it kept giving me more audios

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SatharnPHL

Duolingo is a computer, and computers don't get mad. But when you get stuff wrong, Duolingo will tend to repeat it until you get it right.

The audio on this exercise isn't wrong.

9 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SHald
SHald
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I think it is because it is a relative?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/kate2911hamilton

why is ata lit up

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/-Zorua-
-Zorua-
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Because it's a new word in this lesson. New words are highlighted in orange.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CatherineS-P

it could be "how is six?"

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SatharnPHL

What is "How is six?" supposed to mean?

If "six" is supposed to be a persons name, it should be "Six"/"Sé" - it's safe to assume that "sé" means "he" or "it" in this sentence, it doesn't mean "six".

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CatherineS-P

Ah. Ok thanks

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnneMaguir1

I have typos because I don't know how to get fadas over letters

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SatharnPHL

on a phone or tablet, long-press your vowels (press on the vowel for a second) and a mini-keyboard with accented versions will pop up.

If you are doing Duolingo in the web browser on your PC/laptop, there are buttons under the input box that you can press to get the fadas. If you have a £ above the 3 key on your keybard, you can use the AltGr key (the alt key to the right of your space bar) to get a fada.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Minnie600080

Brain hurtin'. All I do makes my brain hurt. I do spaish,dutch,and irish.

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Minnie600080

Okay

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mediterranean

So, does "conas" derive from "cén chaoi?" It's still not clear to me why "atá" should be used in this case instead of "tá". Please help. :(

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NiallT
NiallT
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As I said above (note that the "copula" is a permanent version of "to be" (I am human) as this is different in Irish from the "to be" for temporary state (I am still in bed)):

Actually, the copula "is" is implied by every question word. "Cad [is] atá sin?" What is it that it is.

Note that the copula is dropped after negative and question particles too, so this is entirely regular and predictable.

Is fear mé Ní fear mé

etc.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mediterranean

I think my level is still too basic/poor to be able to fully understand you explanation. :( But thank you anyway.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NiallT
NiallT
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"Is fear mé." I am a man, now and for ever. Permanent characteristic, copular verb "is".

"Ta mé tagh." I am alright just now. Yesterday I might have had a raging fever. Tomorrow I might be hit by a bus. But right now, I'm fine. Temporary state, verb "tá".

"atá" is a bit different, because it's the second verb in the sentence. The question is actually "how is it that you are?" or breaking the original Irish sentence up and translating word-for-word: Conas atá sé? How-is-it that-is he?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mediterranean

Ok, I think I get it now, thanks. Actually in my native Catalan from Majorca we use a lot this kind of confusing questions like "What is it that this is?" or "Who is it that did this?" etc. (but they're optional, not mandatory, we can of course use the simple easy way of asking), so this is not really new to me.

The problem is I was a bit confused with "atá", and also its relation to "conas". What I think I now understand is:

"atá" is a modified version of "tá" (I didn't get this before), and "conas" is actually a word made up of several words (not sure what words) which include the word "is".

So, in this sentence (How-is-it-that-is-he) both ways of saying "to be" (the copula Is and the verb Tá (bí)) are combined: How is(copula) it that-is(atá) he.

So, in a way, it would be like saying: "How is it (permanently) that he is (temporarily)?"

Am I right?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NiallT
NiallT
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Yep, that's pretty much it. "atá" literalment vol dir "que està/estàs/etc"..

El verb copular ("is", ="ser" de català) es una mica estrany en irlandès - en present, se ve només en positiu declaratiu. En domandes i negatius, es implicat en el particle negatiu o la paraula de domanda.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mediterranean

Wow, em respons en català! Moltes gràcies per l'explicació. :)

3 years ago