Even now, I still come across sentences that do not accept "ye" as a valid answer. Even though it's not commonly used anymore, "ye" is the easiest way for me to distinguish between singular and plural "you."
It's a translation into English - there isn't any need to distinguish between singular and plural "you" in English.
No, though making the differentiation is useful (for me) when learning a language which does have a difference between the two.
In historical English of course both You and Ye were plural, Thou and Thee were the corresponding singular forms. Languages evolve curiously. I wouldn't be surprised to have a single word for first person soon, given how often I and Me are mixed up.
How should I pronounce it? What's the first vowel? Is it /on̻ˠəvʲ/? What for is there that i in the beginning?
Could somebody please explain why this sentence has different word order? Not the familiar and safe VSO?
I’ll try — please forgive my wall of text, and I hope that someone will correct the mistakes I make. There are two usual VSO ways of saying “You are police.”; one uses is, e.g. Is póilíní sibh., and the other uses bí, e.g. Tá sibh in bhur bpóilíní. (literally “You are in your police.”). An alernative way is to make use of a relative clause, which alters VSO order by putting the relative bit first; an English phrase which uses a relative clause, “It is you who are police.”, is roughly equivalent. The Irish relative method combines the relative particle a (which can mean “who”, “what”, “which”, etc. depending upon context) with tá to make the present relative form of the verb bí, atá. (Only a few verbs have a distinct relative form.) Thus, Póilíní atá ionaibh. would literally translate as “Police who-are in-you.”, the relative article allowing the identification of “police” as “your police”, thereby keeping the literal meaning “You are in your police.”, which in turn preserves the usual English translation “You are police.”
Thanks for this clarification. (And the requirements for qualifying as a wall of text must really have been lowered if you feel that you should apologise for your explanation.)
That was as short as I could make the explanation while still allowing the grammatical connections to be followed. It still seemed to be on the verbose side when I’d clicked Post.
Aha! So that explains 'atá' for me, which I hadn't quite understood grammatically before.
So in what context would I use this type of description? Is it purely by choice, or what?
If there are a group of criminals and a group of undercover police officers, and I suddenly figure out which group is the latter, I can use this sentence, thereby blowing their cover. Oops.
What would be the difference between this and "Is pólíní sibh"?? Any shades of difference in meaning?