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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/yo_soycapo

Does Irish Have an Alveolar Trill?

Is there a rolled or trilled r in Irish?

February 14, 2015

11 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rewjeo
  • 2059

No trill, but the r is supposed to be a tap, at least in some dialects. Or, well, the broad one is. I'm not sure if there's a good term for what the slender r is.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnLonDubhBeag

There is a trill in Mayo and Donegal Irish for double R.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fr224

It's palatalized regularly, it just sounds weird. I think.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnLonDubhBeag

Double r, such as:

Fearr

was originally an aveolar trill and still is in the Irish of older speakers of Ulster and Mayo Irish.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fr224

Wikipedia's page on Irish phonology says no, but the final say is down to the native speakers.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/yo_soycapo

Does it vary by dialect and region?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/scilling

The older edition of Teach Yourself Irish had this to say about the pronunciation of the Irish of west Munster:

One sound about which a special note is required is r. It is always trilled, never flapped or silent as in English. For broad r there is no further difficulty, but slender r is difficult for English speakers. It approaches the sound of z. (In some dialects it has almost become z.) If you sound a z and then trill it, you will get a fair result.

However, this Wikipedia article based its phonemic chart on Ó Cuív’s The Irish of West Muskerry, Co. Cork, and it shows that an alveolar tap was used in that part of Munster rather than an alveolar trill.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fr224

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irish_phonology

Yes, but there's no mention of the alveolar trill anywhere in the article.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnLonDubhBeag

See "The Irish of Erris" and "An Teanga Bheo: Gaeilge Uladh", as well Stair na Gaeilge in ómós do Phádraig Ó Fiannachta (Maigh Nuad 1994), there are still dialects and were several with the historical trilled double R.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnCatDubh

Wikipedia and pretty much every other source says the Irish rhotics are alveolar taps, but pretty much every person younger than 30 on YouTube pronounces it like a retroflex approximant.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnLonDubhBeag

They are almost certainly non-native speakers.

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