I think that's actually still a grammatical error even though it's commonly used, though. I'm saying that because it makes no sense to describe a quantity of milk as "one milk" without defining that quantity, since it is a liquid and isn't inherently quantified. Everyone knows you mean "a glass of milk", even though it's been shortened to "a milk" - but if they didn't it wouldn't make sense. An ounce of milk? A pound of milk? A swimming pool of milk?
That said, I don't think the Irish version is concerned with that, since the word "a" doesn't really translate, but is rather implied where appropriate (at least as far as comprehending it from an anglophone perspective goes). Unless I'm not really understanding that, which is totally possible.
Then many English speakers would be mistaken regarding the tapped R — there’s no roll involved with a tap. (US English speakers would be familiar with an alveolar tap as the “D-sounding T” in words like “batter”, which often sounds like “badder” to speakers of other English dialects.)
This is just so different from the Germanic and Romance branches of the IE language family x0 I'm already feeling a bit overwhelmed and I haven't even passed the basics yet. I'm of [half] Irish descent (my paternal ancestor came to New York in 1867 as O'Cainnan [sp?] -- anglicized to Cannon, or so the story goes) so I naturally feel that it's my duty to try to stick it out, but the pronunciation's killing me -_- Does anyone know of a reliable source for Irish pronunciation?
It's overwhelming, I am currently going through this phase with Irish, but when you think about it, English is as messed up for pronunciations/spelling (e.g. to this day I still don't know why "few" rhymes with "sue" but not with "sew") :)
I have found 2 good written sources that explain pronunciation in detail for beginners:
- Lesson 1 of "Learning Irish" by Míchéal Ó Siadhail (also use Appendix I of this book, and the Table of Sounds in the cover)
- Unit 1 of "Basic Irish: A Grammar and Workbook" by Nancy Stenson
Siadhail's explanations contain IPA pronunciations, explanations on how to position the tongue and lips, and have audio resources (CD or tapes). The Appendix is a good reference to print out in the early stages when you doubt everything.
Stenson's chapter explains in more details the "why" of spelling/pronunciation, helping to solidify those rules. She lists a few exceptions we encounter early on in the Duolingo lessons as well (for example, I found out why mná is pronounced "mrá" by the Duolingo lady in the audio).
[…] English is as messed up for pronunciations/spelling (e.g. to this day I still don’t know why “few” rhymes with “sue” but not with “sew”) :)
Blame mainly goes to the Great Vowel Shift. Much of English spelling (for words of a certain age) reflects pronunciations as they were before the Shift. In the case of “sue”, which is a Latinate word, both it and French suivre have a common ancestor.
Oh no, you're absolutely right about English having an absurdly difficult vocabulary and loose (at best) set of spelling standards. I guess this must be what it's like for a non Germanic language speaker to learn English =S Thank you very much for the references ^^ I'll be sure to check them out on Amazon once I'm home.