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  5. "Bíonn siad ag obair."

"Bíonn siad ag obair."

Translation:They do be working.

December 28, 2014



I suggested "They be working" since that is how I would say it (I'm from Tyrone). I remember reading an article, recently, about a group of black and white children in America being shown a picture of Elmo eating cookies while Cookie Monster looks on. Both the black and the white children agreed that Elmo was eating cookies while, when asked "who be eating cookies?" the white children replied Elmo while the black children said it was the Cookie Monster. Here, in NI, we'd say that Cookie Monster BES eating cookies rather than that he BE eating cookies but I thought this was a cool story and it's a nice demonstration of the difference between tá and bí.


Do be working is not proper grammar, how can this be a correct translation? This should surely be 'they are working'


It's just to stress the difference between habitual and .


It's fine Hiberno-English grammar. "They are working" would probably be "Tá siad ag obair." I'm not sure how to translate "Bíonn siad ag obair." Maybe "they are regularly working"?


The thing is, many of us don't speak that way and I'm not about to start. (Well, maybe I will because I kind of like the sound of it.) On the other hand, putting in an extra word that isn't there in the Irish ("regularly," for example), would also be problematic as well. If I see an English sentence that says, "I do be..." then I will know to put it into that particular form in Irish, but going the other way? Not likely.


The thing is, Irish has two expressions, "Tá siad ag obair" and "Bíonn siad ag obair", both of which mean slightly different things. In English, "They are working" would normally be used to express both meanings, and leaves it to context to tell which is actually intended. I find it problematic that the Duolingo lesson rejects a perfectly valid translation because it could be confused for another expression, and insists on a rather obscure dialectal phrase.


This is a wonderful feature of the Irish language. However ... the easy solution would be to treat ""Tá siad ag obair"" as the present continuous, and "Bíonn siad ag obair", as the simple or habitual present.


Yes. I remember it from childhood in Ireland but we ere taught at school that it was not acceptable...They are usually working ... they work usually ...


"They do be working" is an expression you would only ever hear in Hiberno English. "They are working" should be acceptable as it is the way the vast majority of English speakers would expect this to be said.


Honestly i dont think 'they are working' since that normally would mean they are in the act of working. The present simple (They work) is normally used for habitual repeated actions in English


Our teachers (NY) using our text, Progress In Irish, teach that this would mean that they are continuously working and the do be means that in Irish.
Some of us remember our parents and grandparents from Ireland saying, "He does be going to work at 7am" - meaning he goes to work every day at 7am. But this is very confusing for Americans who have never heard such a concept in standard US English. Has to be really drilled in that we have no equivalent. And PII author always uses it with an I gcónaí or such to indicate the continuous sense.


I like in Kildare are we literally say stuff like 'they do be' all the time


Sure, it's Hiberno-English. Agus cén dochar beagán Béarla ar nós Éireann a fhoglaim ar an tslí? Tógaigí go bog leis, a chlann!


This shouldnt be used as translation. It's too literal and most people in Ireland do not say that. How would you translate it into French or German,


As others have pointed out above, there isn't an exact equivalent in the other languages. You could use an adverb such as "frequently" with the present simple to express it. Or you could try to grasp the meaning in Irish and not worry about the translation.


We were always told a children that except in the imperative mood (do be quiet!! don't be silly!!!) "do be" is grammatically wrong.


They do be working is not correct grammar and non native English speakers wouldn't recognize this as correct


There is no other way of transferring this to Irish. It refers to a continuing action in the present. Non native speakers would have a better understandnding than native English speakers as their grammar is more accommodating than English. Though modern English (Canadian, American, Australian & the RoI) grammar will accommodate. It is important to note that 'they are working...' is not the same


Another wrong translation!!!

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