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  •  Course 1: Absolute Beginners - Lesson Four / Gwers Pedwar

    Croeso yn ôl i groeseiriau Cymreig / Welcome back to Welsh Crosswords

    In this fourth lesson we will cover the following topics:-

    1.  Questions 

    2.  Answering Questions

    3.  Translation Exercises

    4 How to use the crosswords &  Croeseiriau   Cymraeg   4

    We have covered a fair amount of territory in the last few lessons and in order to ensure that everyone has time to keep up to date we are going to limit ourselves to one topic this week.

    Thus far we have learned how to make simple statements regarding our actions and intentions. We have talked about the present tense in its various forms and learned a simple (periphrastic) form of the future tense. But of course, it is necessary to be able to ask and answer questions in order to hold a conversation. At the end of this lesson you will be able to ask simple questions in Welsh and answer them.

    Enjoy / mwynhewch.


    Question words

    ble  - where

    sut  - how

    beth  - what

    pryd  - when

    faint  - how much

    oes  - is there? , are there?...

    Sample questions appear on individual word listing pages linked above.

     Answering Questions with 'yes' or 'no'

    This is a complex topic in Welsh because the language does not have single words for 'yes' and 'no'. Your response will generally depend on the form and tense of the question. If you are answering a simple present tense question e.g.

    Ydy e'n bwyta cinio? - Is he eating lunch?

    To answer in the affirmative you would say ydy - yes (he is)

    To answer in the negative you would say nac ydy - no (he isn't)

    Remember: These responses are only appropriate to questions in the present tense. We will cover the responses to past and future tense questions later in this course.

    But what about emphatic questions i.e. questions that don't start with a verb  e.g.

    Meddw yw e? - Is he drunk? 

    In this case you can answer with ie = yes  or na(ge) = no

    This may be somewhat confusing at first but with a little practice it will soon come naturally and remember If you are stuck you can always answer with another sentence. e.g.

    Meddw yw e? - Is he drunk? 

    Dwi'n credu hynny. - I believe/think so.

    You will recall the following from  Grammar - The Present Tense And More . There is more on the page including soundfiles to help with pronunciation. Take some time to acquaint yourself with this and practice asking and answering questions.

    Bod - To Be   Present Tense - Interrogative

    Ydw i'n cerdded? - Am I walking?

    Wyt ti'n cerdded? - Are you walking? (familiar)

    Ydy e'n cerdded / Ydy hi'n cerdded? - Is he / Is she walking?

    Ydyn ni'n cerdded? - Are we walking?

    Ydych chi'n cerdded? - Are you (plural) walking? (also singular formal)

    Ydyn nhw'n cerdded? - Are they walking?

    Bod - To Be   Question - ’No / Yes’ Replies

    Ydw i'n cerdded? - (Nac) Wyt / (Ydych - formal)

    Wyt ti'n cerdded? - (Nac) Ydw

    Ydy e'n cerdded / Ydy hi'n cerdded? - (Nac) Ydy

    Ydyn ni'n cerdded? - (Nac) Ydyn / Ydych

    Ydych chi'n cerdded? - (Nac) Ydyn / (Ydw - formal)

    Ydyn nhw'n cerdded? - (Nac) Ydyn


     Translation Exercises

    And so to our first weekly translation exercise. You will find two short conversations below. Don't worry about getting these 100% correct to begin with, that will take a while, and mistakes are an essential part of learning . You should be familiar with all the necessary grammar and if you need to look up some of the vocabulary go here:  Croeseiriau   Cymraeg and type your query in the search box. Search is located in the right hand column. Remember that some words may be mutated so that their first letter is dropped or altered. This can be problematic for  beginners . If you cant find the Welsh try searching the English word if you know it. ( Hint: wag = gwag below )

    Welsh to English

    "Dw i'n mynd i siopa nawr. Wyt ti'n dod?"
    "Na, dwi'n gwylio'r teledu."
    "Iawn! Dw i'n mynd i brynu llaeth a bara."
    "Cofia'r cwrw. Mae'r oergell yn wag."
    "Wrth gwrs!"

    English to Welsh

    "Where is the cat?"
    "She's in the garden."
    "Is she hunting birds?"
    "No, she knows better."
    "Of course."

    You will find the solutions here:  Solutions

    If you are using Google Translate for any purpose please be aware of the following:-

    1. It does not have all the tenses.

    2. It has a habit of translating into formal Welsh which is very different from colloquial (spoken) Welsh.

    3. It will attempt to translate idiomatic phrases literally. This does not always work.

    It is an excellent tool but it can be confusing given the above limitations. Be wary!

     How to use the crosswords & Croeseiriau Cymreag 4

    And so to our fourth crossword. This week the theme is 'Going Shopping'.

      • Click through the slides below and learn the words as you go.

      • Optional: If you want help with pronunciation or wish to check out other vocabulary entries on the wordcard, click the pic or text below to be taken to the appropriate Geiriadur listing page. 


    That's it for week four. We hope that you have enjoyed the fourth instalment of the course and that your knowledge of the Welsh language has improved. 

    * Don't worry if some of the sample sentences are at a more advanced level. Concentrate on the simpler ones unless of course you are feeling adventurous and want to read ahead.