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  •  Course 1: Absolute Beginners - Lesson One / Gwers Un

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    Croeso i Croeseiriau Cymraeg / Welcome to Welsh Crosswords. In this first lesson we will cover the following topics:-

    1. The Welsh alphabet

    2. The verb bod = to be

    3. Basic sentence structure in Welsh.

    4. How to use the crosswords &  Croeseiriau   Cymraeg   1  

    As you can see, this is not an ambitious first week's schedule but we are keen to avoid overwhelming people right at the outset. Learning a language is a very serious commitment and students will want to adjust to their new learning habits with the minimum of disruption.

    So, how long should you spend on the assignments and exercises contained in these lessons? The  course is of 30 weeks duration and we will post a new lesson each week, usually on Sunday. This suggests that you should take about 6 or 7 days to work through the materials in each lesson. Not a bad rule of thumb but of course  you are free to proceed at your own chosen speed.

    You might also wish to join the  course support group on AmeriCymru which can be found here:  Grwp Y  Cymraeg Please be patient as it can take a few hours for the moderators to spot the new application and admit you. Here you can ask questions and submit any written homework assignments should you choose to do so.

    Whatever you do....enjoy / mwynhewch.

     The Welsh Alphabet


    Facts about the Welsh alphabet:-


    1. There are 29 letters in the Welsh alphabet.

    2. There are 7 vowels  a,e,i,o,u,w and y. The letter y can be either a vowel or a consonant.

    3. There are 23 consonants in the Welsh alphabet (y can be either).

    4. The letters k, q, v, x and z are not included in the Welsh alphabet.

    5. The Welsh alphabet includes eight digraph* letters: ch, dd, ff, ng, ll, ph, rh, th

    There is much more about 'yr wyddor' on this page:- A Note on the Welsh Alphabet , including a guide to pronunciation. We would not suggest committing it to memory at this stage but some attempt to familiarise yourself with it is essential and will pay dividends.

     The verb bod = to be

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    Below you will find the standard and spoken forms of the present (affirmative) tense of the Welsh verb bod = to be

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    These must be memorised. They are essential to the formation of simple (and complex) Welsh sentences as the next section clearly demonstrates.

    There is more on bod in Grammar section  1  on  Croeseiriau   Cymraeg - The Present Tense And More


     Basic sentence structure in Welsh.

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    If we consider the simple sentence 'Dwi'n cerdded' = 'I am walking' we find that it consists of the following component parts. Take a while to familiarise yourself with this.

     
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    At this point you might want to start forming simple sentences, similar in structure to the examples below.  Use the Dictionary/Geiriadur ( linked from the right hand column on this page for easy access) to  look up vocabulary and adapt the sentences below, once you have mastered them, to your own purposes. You will be surprised at the range of meaning that you can already express.


    Dwi'n hwylio i'r ynys . - I am sailing to the island.

    Dwi'n mynd i'r llyfrgell . - I am going to the library.

    Mae'n wyntog iawn heddiw. - It's very windy today.

    Mae'r awyr yn gymylog a llwyd .  - The sky is cloudy and gray.

    Dyn ni'n cuddio 'ma. - We're hiding here.

    Mae hi'n bwyta ei chinio . - She is eating her lunch.

    Dwi eisiau pysgod a sglodion . - I want fish and chips.

    Mae'r môr yn arw heddiw . - The sea is rough today.

    Mae'n bwrw eira heddiw . - It's snowing/snowy today.

    Dwi'n hoffi nofio yn yr afon. - I like swimming in the river.

    In the above examples it is important to note the following  -   i'r (i yr) = to the -  ’r is used after a word ending in a vowel - it does not matter if the word after it starts with a vowel or a consonant. For more on this see Y Fannod The Article.

    We are now ready to look at the wordlists and crosswords which are an essential part of this course . Some sample sentences may be more advanced than your current learning level. Don't worry....skip anything you can't understand (unless of  course you want to read ahead). 



     How to use the crosswords & Croeseiriau Cymraeg 1


    And so to our first crossword. These are provided so that you can accumulate vocabulary and practice forming simple (and progressively more complex) sentences. They are very easy to use.
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      • 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 one. We hope that you have enjoyed the first instalment of the course  and that your knowledge of the Welsh language has improved. Next week we will be covering the present perfect tense in Welsh.

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