Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Re: NATLANG: Gaidhlig volunteer needed

From:Thomas Leigh <thomas@...>
Date:Wednesday, March 22, 2006, 0:14
Sgrìobh Mark Reed:
> I picked Scottish Gaelic to match my own heritage (1/4 Scots)
Good choice! :-)
> and am now trying to figure out what the dang thing sounds like. > Which ain't easy.
Elliott already gave you the link to Akerbeltz, which is the best resource for Scottish Gaelic pronunciation on the web. I also highly recommend just listening to the language on Radio nan Gaidheal ( to hear the sounds, the rhythm, etc.
> So, some dumb questions for anyone able to answer: >Are lenited |bh| and |mh| really [v]? Not [B]?
Yes, both are [v]. In Old Gaelic (aka Old Irish) |bh| was [B] and |mh| was [B~] (i.e. nasalised [B]). In modern Gaelic they have fallen together as [v] and the nasalisation in the case of |mh| is transferred to the adjacent vowel(s).
> What's the IPA symbol for a palatalized voiceless dental stop?
Palatalized voiceless dental stop? I don't think SG has one of those; in most (if not all) dialects palatalised [t] is realised as [tS]. The big thing to remember where stop consonants are concerned is that all are voiceless in SG, the difference being one of aspiration: |b|, |d|, |g| are realised as [p], [t], [k] while |p|, |t|, |c| are realised as [p_h], [t_h], [k_h] (before vowels; after vowels theire realisation varies depending on vowel length and whether the vowel is stressed or unstressed). The fact that |b|, |d|, |g| are voiceless unaspirated stops leads many textbooks to say things like "_b_ is pronounced like the English 'b' at the beginning of a word, and like English 'p' in the middle or at the end of a word".
> What the heck is a "velarized dental" (e.g. broad single initial > unlenited |l| and |n|)? How do you do that with your tongue??
Unfortunately I have no linguistic training, so I can't describe this properly. Basically, you press your tongue into your top teeth all the way around the front og your mouth. This gives the |l| or |n| a "thick" sound. I don't know how to describe it any better than that -- I think the Akerbeltz site has sound files. Le deagh dhùrachd, Thomas