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5. "This car is only four feet l…

# "This car is only four feet long."

## Translation:Níl an carr seo ach ceithre throigh ar fad.

July 29, 2015

In another exercise I found "sé troithe". Why is here "ceithre throigh"? Is it not troithe a special plural form for counting?

See this discussion for an overview of which forms of troigh go with which numbers.

Then, if I understand well, it should be "ceithre troithe" in this exercise. GRMA, Scilling, it is an honour to be adressed by you. You are being of great help to me in the learning of Irish. Beizón! :-)

Yes, you’ve understood well. Whenever you find an exercise with an incorrect translation provided, be sure to use the Report a Problem button to bring it to the attention of the course creators.

There seems to be a discussion about cardinal numbers an troigh, with sé troithe appearing along with ceithre throigh. Duo says it should be troithe, Collins Pocket Dictionary says throigh. Are both right?

It should be troithe. Collins, and the default answer for this exercise, are incorrect, as explained in scilling's link above.

I thought carr and gluisteán were both acceptable for car. They were both expected in another question, and yet this one is marked off for my having selected both of them. What have I missed???

They probably didn't expect ito as an answer

I said "Níl an carr ach ceithre troithe ar a fhad." Admittedly I omitted the 'seo' but it also corrected the other parts of the sentence which differed from the above answer. However, NÓD has "It is six feet long, tá sé sé troithe ar a fhad." (http://www.teanglann.ie/en/eid/feet_long).

It's a dialect difference - ar fad is the "standard" way of saying "long/in length" (though it is far more commonly used to mean "complete(ly)" or "total(ly)") , the current speaker says ar fhad, and ar a fhad is just a variation (I think it probably means "it is six feet in it's length").

It might have accepted ar a fhad if you hadn't left out the seo, but that probably depends on whether anyone else reported it as an alternative.

I got this right only because it was multiple choice, otherwise I would have never know to start it with "Nil" . Is this one the same as those sentences we had that were "You are but a boy"...I haven't had one of those sentences in months and can't remember if they started with "Nil" or not.

This is basically what happens whenever there is an "only" in the sentence. Irish doesn't have a word for this, so "X does only Y" is expressed as literally "X does not [do anything] but Y"*.

GnaG calls this a semi-negative clause, in case you want to read up on it: http://nualeargais.ie/gnag/satz2.htm#leathdhiultach

The placement of "ach" in this sentence differs from other exercises- e.g. Nil ach ceithre troithe eatarthu. Is there a rule I've missed?

For a start, there isn't a noun before "only" in "There are only four feet between them", so it's not comparable to this exercise, where "this car" comes before "only" and an carr seo comes before ach.

Is there any way this can be correctly translated using amhain?

Not that I can think of.

Is it really wrong to start this sentence also with: Níl ach an carr seo... I notice that in other sentences with the "níl ach" / "only" construction it is places after each other. So I wonder why it is wrong to do it here too.

Yes, it is really wrong to start this sentence with Níl ach an carr seo. The "only" in this sentence is qualifying ceithre troithe, not an carr seo.

If you think other sentences support your approach, please quote the actual sentences that you are referring to so that the differences can be printed out.

I found a couple of sentences with differences in it. But indeed I think it depends on where the "only" is referring to. Though I found also two sentences that are in English almost the same, but that differ in Irish to where the "ach" is placed in the sentence. Can you please tell me why it is different? You are only boys = Níl ionaibh ach buachaillí. She is only a student = Níl ach dalta inti.

The Níl ach dalta inti exercise is wrong. Indeed, the English to Irish exercise "She is only a student" gives Níl inti ach dalta as the translation.

The other exercises using this construction are more consistent:
Níl ionainn ach buachaillí - "We are only boys"
Níl ionainn ach cailíní - "We are only girls"
Níl iontu ach béir - "They are only bears"
Níl ionam ach bean - "I am but a woman"
Níl ionaibh ach cailíní - "You are only girls"
Níl ionaibh ach buachaillí - "You are only boys"
Níl iontu ach dlíodóirí - "They are only lawyers"
Níl ionat ach innealtóir - "You are but an engineer"
Níl ionam ach fear - "I am only a man"
Níl ann ach luch - "It is only a mouse"

Okay, so in these cases Níl and ach are separated. That is good to remember. But in the sentence : Níl ach péire bróg amháin againn; it comes after each other. So I guess it is best to remember where Níl ach is referring to?!

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