p h o u k a  h o m e i r i s h  l e s s o n s  h o m e

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exercise XIV

§ 103. THe digraphs in Irish

For the meaning of digraph, see §90. Some digraphs represent long vowel-sounds, and others represent short vowel-sounds.

§ 104. The long vowel-sounds are often represented by digraphs consisting of two vowels, one of which is marked long. Thus —

ái is sounded like á like the phonetic symbol au
éi is sounded like é like the phonetic symbol ae
ói is sounded like ó like the phonetic symbol ō
úi is sounded like ú like the phonetic symbol oo

§ 105. As will be seen, these digraphs are formed by adding i to the vowels á, é, í, ó, ú; and the sound of the vowel which is marked long is given to the whole digraph. This only difference between ái, ói, úi and á, ó, ú is that the consonants which follow the ái, ói, úi are slender. (See §8) Formerly, each vowel in the combinations was sounded separately; thus, áit, au-it, etc., and some trace of this can be heard in many words.

§ 106. NOTE—In Ulster ái is pronounced (aa) and ói (au). (See §78)

§ 107. Examples for pronunciation only: sáile (saul'-ĕ), báis (baush), fáis (faush), céis (kaesh), éille (ael' ĕ), féir (faer), próisde (prōsh-dĕ), cúis (koosh)

§108 Words

áit (aut), a place
cáibin (kaub-'een) ¹, a "caubeen"
crúiscín (kroosh'-keen) ¹, a pitcher
fáilte (faul-tĕ), welcome
fód (fōdh), a sod
folláin (fŭL'-aun) ¹, sound, healthy, wholesome
láidir (Laud'-ir), strong
míle (meel'-ĕ), a thousand
móin (mōn), turf
móna (mōn'-ă), of turf: fód móna
páisde (paush-dĕ), a child
sláinte (sLaun'-tĕ), health

1. In Munster, (kaub-een'), (kroosh-keen'), (fuL-aun')


note that
are not
necessarily pronounced
as in English

See § 13-16

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