"You like the beef."
Translation:Is maith leat an mhairteoil.
When does mhairteoil use an h and when does it not (mairteoil)? Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't, and I'm confused :) Thanks
The h is called a séimhiú (lenition) and changes the sound of the consonant. The rules of when to use lenition in a noun are quite extensive, but here are the main ones you need to know.
If a feminine noun begins with a consonant (other than d, t, s), you must lenite it after the definite article (an).
- an mhairteoil = the beef
- an chloch = the stone
- an fharraige = the sea
Masculine nouns (no lenition):
- an madra = the dog
- an crann = the tree
- an fear = the man
After certain possessive pronouns:
- mo mhairteoil = my beef
- do mhairteoil = your beef
- a mhairteoil = his beef
But not her
- a mairteoil = her beef
baddums, mairteoil would also be lenited following mo (“my”), do (“your” [singular]), and a (“his”). However, it wouldn’t be lenited following a (“her”). It would also be lenited following several prepositions, as well as in other grammatical circumstances which we haven’t covered yet.
- mo mhairteoil (“my beef”)
- do mhairteoil (“your beef”)
- a mhairteoil (“his beef”)
- a mairteoil (“her beef”)
EDIT #1: The forum software doesn’t correctly render a single character in italics when using underscores. The “a” for both “his” and “her” above should not appear with neighbouring underscores, and the text between them shouldn’t be rendered as italic.
EDIT #2: Using asterisks around a single character works; using underscores around a single character doesn’t.
"a mhairteoil " a mhairteoil
a ("his") a ("her")
I knew it worked for me in quotes, so I tried out the second without it. You could use double stars around a single letter for bold.
Oh, just make sure there is no space between the letter and the star. It should work. I generally add an extra space after the last italicized letter star. "a " ("his") to prevent "a mhairteoil"
Oh, I see from your posts that you use underline in front of and after words to make them italicized. I didn't know you could do that. Use single star in front of and after words for the same effect and it works on single letters too. a ("his") a mairteoil
Thanks for your reply. A few weeks back I’d downloaded a Markdown guide, and discovered that the default for Markdown is one asterisk on each side for italics and two asterisks on each side for bold; before downloading it, I’d expected it to use one underscore on each side for italics and one asterisk on each side for bold. I found that one underscore on each side worked when there were at least two characters between the underscores; it doesn’t seem to be able to render correctly with a single character between the underscores.