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The Daltaí Boards » Archive: 1999-2004 » 2003 (January-June) » Standardized Pronunciation Guide « Previous Next »

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Pádraig (205.244.12.71 - 205.244.12.71)
Posted on Tuesday, January 07, 2003 - 02:52 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

A Chairde,

Does anyone know of a universally standardized pronunciation guide which will enable the Irish speaker to faithfully capture the sounds of Irish and communicate them to non-native speakers? Often we see that someone has decided there is "no equivalent" for a given sound in English or French or Navajo for that matter, and so the student is asked to settle for an approximation. It's like the expression, "you can't get there from here." Of course you can. Anyone out there with a map?

Beannacht,
Pádraig

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Paul (66.152.218.225 - 66.152.218.225)
Posted on Tuesday, January 07, 2003 - 03:07 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

A Phadraig, a chara,
I don't know about a map, but I think I can point you in the right direction. Are you familiar with the Intl Phonetic Association symbols? They're a way to express sounds in symbolic form. There's an explanation of the IPA symbols in the beginning of the Focloir Poca, which uses these symbols for each word contained in the dictionary.
I'm sure there's someone on this chatboard with a better knowledge of linguistics could give you a more complete description of how the IPA symbols work.
Adh mor,
Paul

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Pádraig (63.175.172.237 - 63.175.172.237)
Posted on Tuesday, January 07, 2003 - 05:00 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Buiochas, A Phól,

I've seen the IPA symbols listed in the Foclóir Póca along with the An Gúm symbols. You may have noticed that there are 9 or 10 IPA symbols which have no corresponding English equivalent words. I believe it is in these areas that the nuances of Irish pronunciation are lost.

For example: there follows here an exchange which arose from a good-natured disagreement over the pronunciation of the Irish for bird, "éan."

[I checked
>with the resource I use for pronunciation (Foclóir
>Póca -- An Gum)
>and found the following for "éan."
>
>e:n with e: = the a in the English say and
> with n = the n in the Irish naoi.
>
>In these parts that gives us "ane" which rhymes with
>pain, sane, and lane. (Incidentally, in some parts of
>the South, these words rhyme with pine, sign, and
>line.)

Hehe... actually, I think it might be more of a case of "that-sound-doesn't-really-exist-in-standard-English-so-we'll-give-the-closest-equivalent" from An Gúm :P

[e:n] is indeed the proper phonetic spelling. The point I was making was that whereas the English spellings of -ane/-ain implies that the [e:] be followed by a short "y" sound (as in you, not as in why); the actual pronunciation should rather have the [e:] followed by a short "uh" sound (also known as Schwa) than the "y" sound, as the "y" sound would tend to make the n slender (as in "ní", not as in "naoi"), where the "uh" sound would keep it broad.

So basically, we were saying the same - only applying different phonetic principles.]

It strikes me that this takes a lot of explaining that might be eliminated with more accurate symbols. One way or another, Foclóir Póca is not utilizing the IPA, if, indeed the IPA will solve the problem.

Thanks for listening, y'all.
Pádraig

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Seosamh Mac Muirí (193.1.100.103 - 193.1.100.103)
Posted on Wednesday, January 08, 2003 - 05:49 am:   Edit Post Print Post

A Phádraig, a chara,

Déarfainn gur chaith muintir an Ghúim meabhair agus méid fiúntach ama leis an gceist. Ní furasta a mbeachtú ná a mbréagnú. Is fiú staidéar a ghlacadh ar a saothar dá bhrí sin.

[e:n] is indeed the proper phonetic spelling.

An ceart agat, is fíor san.

The point I was making was that ....
... the actual pronunciation should rather have the [e:] followed by a short "uh" sound (also known as Schwa) than the "y" sound, as the "y" sound would tend to make the n slender (as in "ní", not as in "naoi"), where the "uh" sound would keep it broad.

Sílim go n-aithníonn tú, i dtosach thuas, nach mbíonn aon fhuaim ar chor ar bith ag an nguta 'a' san fhocal 'éan'. Ní deirtear [e:@n]. Níl san '-a-' san ach comhartha scríofa ar an gconsan '-n' a bheith leathan. Is leideadh do dhuine litriú na Sean-Ghaeilge, 'én' tuis. ainmn. uatha, in amannaí mar so.

Ní córas sárfhoirfe é litriú na Gaeilge. Is ar modh gach teanga eile í sa méid sin. Táimid faoi chomaoin acu súd a chuirfidh fogharscríobh IPA, nó leagan de, ina gcuid leabhar, Ó Siadhail, Gussmann agus Doyle, Ó Conchobhair, An Gúm agus eile.

Beir bua is beannacht.

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