1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Irish
  4. >
  5. "Salt, pepper and oil."

"Salt, pepper and oil."

Translation:Salann, piobar agus ola.

January 9, 2015



The Oxford commavis correct English usage.


What is an oxford comma?


Does Irish allow the use of an Oxford comma? I'm scared to try.Not sure what "Irish allow" means here. From what I can tell the Oxford comma isn't used in day-to-day English. I think it would look weird (and therefore judged as incorrect) in either language, even though there might be an accepted use by specialists.

That being said, try it out in a Duolingo exercise and see what happens. In my experience the program tends to ignore punctuation, capitalization, etc. -- not really caring if you put a period at the end of a sentence or capitalize the first word.The Oxford commavis correct English usage.


without the oxford comma "mum, dad, ann and jack" could be saying the mum and dad's name. with the comma "mum, dad, ann, and Jack" implies there are four people.


With the comma "My mam, Ann, and Jack" could be saying my mother's name. The comma is a source of ambiguity. Without the comma, the ambiguity is removed, and "My mam, Ann and Jack" is clearly talking about three people, not two.


In a list of nouns agus is typically repeated between each item in the list e.g. salann agus piobar agus ola


"reduce, reuse and recycle" - laghdaigh, athúsáid agus athchúrsáil
"A Strategy for Europe on Nutrition, Overweight and Obesity related health issues" - Straitéis don Eoraip maidir le Cothú, Rómheáchan, Otracht agus saincheisteanna gaolmhara
"Active Leadership in Education, Enterprise and Engagement" - Ceannaireacht Ghníomhach san Oideachas, san Fhiontraíocht agus sa Rannpháirtíocht
"Irish Council for Science, Technology and Innovation" - Comhairle na hÉireann um Eolaíocht, Teicneolaíocht agus Nuáil
"Africa-EU Migration, Mobility and Employment (MME) Partnership" - Comhpháirtíocht an AE agus na hAfraice maidir le hImirce, Soghluaisteacht agus Fostaíocht
"To help, encourage or assist someone to commit a crime" - Cuidiú, spreagadh nó tacaíocht a thabhairt do dhuine le coir a dhéanamh
"Air Transport, Air-to-Air Refuelling and other Exchanges of Services" - Aeriompar, Athbhreoslú san Aer agus Malartú Eile Seirbhísí
"Food, Drink and Tobacco Industry" - Tionscal an Bhia, na Dí agus an Tobac
"he never liked sports: sweat, grunting and all that" - níor thaitin spóirt riamh leis: an t-allas, an ghnúsacht agus é sin ar fad
"I did my best: honour, loyalty and all that" - rinne mé mo dhícheall: onóir, dílseacht agus mar sin de
"you shouldn't eat burgers, chips and so on" - níor cheart duit burgair, sceallóga agus mar sin de a ithe


It’s telling that of your 4 tearma.ie examples which feature preposition, 3 fail to repeat the preposition before each element in the list. This repetition of the preposition is, depending on who you ask, either typical or non-negotiable in Gaeltacht Irish, and a structure using only a single preposition is “clearly disfavored”. Tearma.ie’s failure to do so certainly doesn’t indicate that they have much concern with structuring their lists in the typical Gaeltacht way.

Admittedly it seems in the literary language when the lists get long (~5 or more items) lists without repeated agus are possible. Regardless it’s still much more likely that the list in the exercise would be realized as salann agus piobar agus ola by someone who grew up speaking the language.


It's equally telling that you don't provide counter examples from contemporary sources, but instead refer to a 35 year old academic paper (which is, of course, written in English. So much for an teanga bheo).

I think that your definition of "the Gaeltacht way" and mine might might not quite align - I'm talking about the Gaeltacht of 2020, not 1920.


The paper I cited is 35 years old, it's not the Würzburg glosses. It copiously cites 20th century Gaeltacht novels from all three dialects, several of which are also less than 40 years old. Considering we're talking about basic structures in the language (coordination) and not something like informal vocabulary which actually changes rapidly it is easily contemporary enough to suit our present purposes.

I found several counterexamples of my own also from 20th century sources including ...agus d'ofráil siad tabhartais dó, ór agus túis agus miorra (gold, frankincense and myrrh) from An Bíobla Naofa and Dúirt sí liom fhéin agus le Bileachaí a dhul ag iarraidh lóin agus óil agus tobac from Cré na Cille. This 2nd one is notable because it exhibits both repeated le and polysyndeton of agus. I would've continued searching for more, until I thought better of continuing to argue with someone who has no intention of changing their mind.

My "Gaeltacht way" is based on careful study of the grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation and syntax of Irish, as spoken and written by Gaeltacht natives, both living and deceased. I'm sick of the patronizing notion that their language is forever stuck in the 19th century. That notion was bad enough when it was held by English authorities, but it really ill-befits an ostensible Irish language enthusiast such as yourself.

If you'd like to disregard reliable resources new and old in favor of tearma.ie that's your prerogative. Beatha dhuine a thoil. Just don't conflate that with being a 21st century Irish speaker.


It's not the age of the paper that matters so much as the fact that it's an academic paper. Behind a paywall.

And I'm not the one who is proposing the patronizing notion that their language is forever stuck in the 19th century - that's what you're doing by criticising examples that don't follow those 19th century patterns. I have no objection to the use of "polysyndetic coordination", I have a problem with the idea that it's not "proper Irish" if you don't use polysyndetic coordination.

I found half a dozen examples in the FGB that use polysyndetic coordination, but it occurs in both the Irish and the English translation:
Cruth agus deilbh agus éagasc - "form and figure and appearance"
Fiach agus iascach agus eanach - "hunting and fishing and fowling"
Ciall agus tuiscint agus eagna chinn - "sense and understanding and intelligence"
Airm agus earra agus éide - "arms and equipment and uniform"
Mór agus beag agus inmheánach - "big and small and middling"
An lorán agus an donán agus an dílleachta - "the weak and the wretched and the orphan"


I alaways forget the "and", also known as "agus" that sounds like my cats name...

Learn Irish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.