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  5. "Cathain agus conas?"

"Cathain agus conas?"

Translation:When and how?

March 3, 2015



Are cathain, cen uair and ca huair 100% interchangeable or are there any finer nuances? (sorry for the lack of fadas)


I would say they are mostly interchangeable but cathain means when and cen uair means what time so cathain would be for more general use whereas cen uair would be for specific times.


Well "conas" is more a Munster thing. In Connacht we say "cén chaoi".


Why the when is cathain and not nuair


Not sure how old this discussion is, but this is an important distinction to make. Cathain is the question when, nuair is the conjunction when.

Consider the different meanings of when in these examples: -When do you eat? I eat when I run. -Cathain a itheann tú? Ithim nuair a rithim.

(If you consider that nuair once came from a contraction of "an uair" [the hour/the time], you can explain this as "Ithim an uair a rithim" - I eat /the time that/ I run i.e I eat /when/ I run)

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