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  5. "An gceapann tú?"

"An gceapann tú?"

Translation:Do you think?

May 22, 2015



Oh dear. I translated this into the idiomatic (and to my mind a correct) sentence: 'you think so?' (With a question mark at the end.) Am I right in thinking that with a raised inflection at the end this would be a correct translation? ('you think so, do you?' or 'you think so? That's hilarious.) etc.

I do understand though that it's not a directly grammatical translation, and that the English has two different meanings. But I'm always irked when I come out with something I think should be accepted and it isn't.


The “so” in “You think so?” is an adverb meaning “in that way”, so Irish would need at least a pronoun to represent that same (unidentified) referent, e.g. An gceapann tú é? — without it, it can only translate as the other meaning of “Do you think?”, e.g. “Do you ponder?”.


Duo accepts "Do you think so?" now. But that isn't the best translation then? Good to know!


Does the sentence "An gceapann tú?" then translate to English better as, "Are you using your head?"


That translation has a progressive aspect that’s lacking in the Irish sentence — “Do you use your head?” would be closer.


everything you say in your other posts is 100% correct. reading, having dictionnaries and grammars IS A MUST to learn any language.Of course, living in the country is also a plus, but it is not an absolute necessity. I learned Spanish-Portuguese and Italian when I was 18 and did not visit any of these countries until 7 years later. Same with English which I started to learn at 14. German I had at school from age 10, Swiss German ( Alamanisch ) I learned with my friends in my hometown and French is my mother-tongue. Latin and classical Greek I had from age 10 during 8 years also at school. Now I am 78 and learning Russian for my tourism business in Peru. Irish, Turkish and Romanian for fun and Modern Greek to see the differences with classical Greek.. I love languages. They have given me the possibility to travel around the whole planet ( with the exception of Africa) during 53 years for business ,making friends for life in 72 countries. I should - and could - retire, but I love working. It is my favourite hobby.


I am fascinated to read these comments on motivation for learning Irish . I was prompted to do so because my son in law's from a west Cork farm, & their children learn Irish at school. I felt disadvataged by lack of pronunciation knowledge, among other things. It is interesting to see word derivatives from other languages e.g. Is 'coinin' from old English coney (rabbit) ?


The rabbit isn't native to Ireland. It was introduced by the Normans, who spoke a form of French, in the 12th Century, and Irish got coinín from Anglo-Norman. English also got "cony" from Anglo-Norman.


thread order bit off, sorry, duolingo is not allowing me an option to reply to your reply to me query about learning material... Odd, must be a bug.

In any case, never lived in a Gaeltacht, quite open to the possibility depending on where jobs are. Would like to learn to speak and read Irish, if anything more because of umm... the feeling of some degree of shame and regret. Not because I really have to, to be honest now.

Trying to get my wife into it, but she's like, "Oh, God, no way! The horror, the horror!" but she's coming round to it. It's like so we can also kind of have our own secret language, if you will, while abroad.


It’s not a bug, but a feature — in my view, a poorly chosen feature — for which the main benefit is the avoidance of horizontal scrollbars. The result is that discussions on Duolingo have an annoying indentation limit, which requires conversations to resort to exactly the workaround that you’ve taken.

From my perspective, for both speaking and reading, there’s no substitute for practice. They’re separate skills, and both must be done to gain facility in both. I’d recommend the purchase of a good grammar book, so that one can discover why an odd-looking sentence is structured in the way that it is. I’d also recommend the purchase of dictionaries, so that one can learn newly encountered words, or figure out how to express a particular nuance of meaning. To aid reading, I’d also recommend practicing writing (longhand, not typing), since that will likely help vocabulary to “set” in one’s brain, both through usage and through “muscle memory”. Stoking your wife’s interest in Irish would certainly aid your (and her) speaking abilities — one could imagine using a “secret language” when going, say, antiquing, and discussing whether that porcelain salt cellar would be a bargain and look good in your kitchen. (Adjust to match wherever your wife’s interests might lie.)


Thanks, I'm looking at ranganna.com.

My wife and I are having interesting discussions on pronounciation, idioms and colloquialisms. She states that one of the reasons Irish is not spoken is because one dialect can be so different.

I however am of the opinion that Irish isn't spoken enough because they don't do it like the Netherlands where Dutch is the medium of instruction at school. My wife argues that will be to the detriment of English which is a valuable higher learning language. While that may be a potentially real problem, I think it doesn't seem to practically affect the Dutch people and their ability to speak other languages.


I agree that the perception of insufficient value is why Irish is not widely spoken. For some people, value is measured in economic terms, and such people won’t learn anything that offers insufficient return on investment (be it investment of time, of money, or by some other metric). For other people, value is measured in terms of energy expended — the effort required to learn the ins and outs of copular statement structure or verbal noun usage, of noun declensions and verb conjugations, is too steep a price to justify the end result of conversational fluency or the ability to read a book as Gaeilge. In the case of Ireland, where English-language media and publications are widely available both offline and online, I wonder how much English fluency would suffer if Irish were to become the sole medium of instruction in primary and secondary schools.


Of course, thanks, that makes more sense. BTW, could I ask you a difficult question? Would you have any strong recommendations for anything; books, online courses etc... I don't mind paying. Bit hard trying to learn Irish when you're not back in Ireland, I find. Thanks very much.


Is your goal primarily to speak Irish or to read Irish? My recommendations would depend upon what your goal is. (Many of us here aren’t in Ireland.)


That's how I always think of it - the American version would be a very sarcastic "Ya think??" after someone states the obvious.


What meanings does this have? "think" has a lot of flavors, and in other languages they are not always expressed with the same verb (Norwegian "tror", "tenker" and "synes" for example, "believe", "cogitate", "feel").


Irish also has a number of different verbs that can be translated as "think" but they aren't all synonyms. ceap can be used for "believe" or "be of the opinion".

Here are some examples from the NEID:
"where do you think you 're going?" - cá gceapann tusa a bhfuil tú ag dul?
"do you think I'm made of money?" - an gceapann tú gur déanta d'airgead atá mé?
"I suppose you think you're clever" - is dócha go gceapann tú go bhfuil tú cliste
"that's what you think!" - sin a cheapann tusa!
"it's easier than you think" - tá sé níos éasca ná a cheapann tú


What's wrong with "Are you thinking?"


Irish is like English in that the present progressive is expressed differently than the simple present.


what is the use ( or meaning) of AN in this sentence if DUO gives its translation as THE ? I wanted to translate it correctly but then I said NO i want to see what DUO says. Now I am confused. Does AN translate as SO in this sentence ? If so, why doesn't DUO give it a a second possibility ?


There’s more than one an word in Irish. The an in this sentence is not a definite article, but rather an interrogative verbal particle; think of it as a translation of Spanish «¿» .

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