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Quick accent question

Postby bontddu » Wed Mar 05, 2014 12:48 am

Hi All & hope you're all well.

Quick question - I think I'm pretty good at identifying accent/dialect, but I was listening to Bryn Williams, the chef, and I noticed he was a hoffi/gyda/bwyta (bitta, not boyta), gallu man, instead of licio, efo, boyta, medru. I thought he was from the north, but all of these are primarily from the south - so my question is - am I misidentifying his dialect?

Also - IT - not terrifying clowns or anything to do with computers - if someone wants to say something fairly gender neutral like "I'll do *it* later", or "I wonder if *it* might work" etc., must the speaker really know the gender of the particular task, etc., or are fo or hi interchangeable in this context?

Regards, & Diolch

Rob
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Re: Quick accent question

Postby sumsmeister » Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:10 am

Hi Rob. Although SSiW splits the Welsh world into two, there are more regional variations than that. In the interests of a sensible compromise and to avoid too much work, we have two choices. You could go on forever, but in the end it would get really messy, as there are places like Rhosllanerchrugog (to name but one) that have expressions not in (common) use a couple of miles away... :shock: So for instance, where I grew up in Meirionnydd, (Merionethshire), the local expression for "No worries" is "Dim bwys", which (literally) means "No weight". You probably wouldn't often hear it in Pembrokeshire...
Bryn is originally from Dinbych (Denbigh) in the top right-hand corner of Wales and makes the "Notable People" section HERE. As with anyone who gets around a bit, I suspect Bryn has taken ways of saying things from different people and I think we all pick up stuff that we like, or is commonly used in our working lives...it's pretty much done subconsciously to try to "fit in", unless it is so ingrained or someone is determined to keep their origins obvious. His working life has been tinged with a lot of working in the South, so there is a strong Southern influence going on, I suspect.

Aran and Catrin use "Gwneud e" in the Gog version of the course for "do it" and I'm fairly sure Iestyn and Cat use the equivalent "fo". I'd be surprised if they said anything else, but not worried :wink:
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Re: Quick accent question

Postby bontddu » Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:35 am

Hi Gari

Many thanks, as always! :smile: Interesting what you say about "picking up" words along the way. I don't know why but I hadn't really considered that (maybe because I haven't succumbed to the Australian accent LOL). I have heard him say efo as well as gyda - just what he feels like I guess. I love "dim bwys" by the way - no weight. My family were all from Meirionnydd so maybe this is what they said too. Tell me - this is another accent question - I hear "wy" as sometimes "oy" and sometimes more like "wee" - would you pronounce this dim boyce or dim bweece in Meirionnydd?

On a side note and away from language, I urge anyone who likes cooking to try Bryn's gnocchi recipe. I've cooked gnocchi many times and this was by far the best recipe - fantastic!

https://www.s4c.co.uk/ceginbryn/c_gnocchi.shtml

Thanks again Gari, and best wishes.

Rob
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Re: Quick accent question

Postby sumsmeister » Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:33 am

"Dim boyce" is what you're looking for and not just in Meironnydd (which has been absorbed into Gwynedd these days..). Sounds like something Del Trotter might say in "Only Fools and Horses"...!
Take a look at "wyau", eggs, though - wee-eye is the phonetic pronunciation for that. Its all a case of picking it up as you go and not worrying about it until you need it. In your avatar, "Bwyll" comes from "Pwyll" and has an "oy" sound in the middle. Tywyn is Tuh-win. the list goes ever on... :smile:
"Pwys" is the unmutilated (or should that be un-mutated :wink: :harhar: ) word and it means weight if you add -au to make "pwysau", so slightly different than I wrote before, sorry, or a pound in weight.
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Re: Quick accent question

Postby Aran » Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:42 am

Bryn Williams is from Dinbych, so a Gog, but a fair bit over the other side from us...:) Gary is perfectly right to say that there is no neat divide...:)

sumsmeister wrote:Aran and Catrin use "Gwneud e" in the Gog version of the course for "do it"


This, however, shows that it's always easy to mis-hear! Fe/fo is one of the least likely to be flexible for an individual - I put 'fo' in a sentence I'd tried really, really hard to Hwntw-ify on the forum quite recently - and there's no way either Catrin or I would say 'gwneud e' - so it just goes to show that the actual differences are pretty minimal sometimes...:)
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Re: Quick accent question

Postby Craig F » Wed Mar 05, 2014 4:49 pm

bontddu wrote: ... sometimes more like "wee" ...

My [limited] understanding :-? is that it is technically oo-ee, w=oo, y=ee. When you run them together the 'w' sound comes out. Similar to the French 'oui'.
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Re: Quick accent question

Postby bontddu » Wed Mar 05, 2014 10:48 pm

My thanks to everyone who has replied - Gari, Aran and Craig.

Aran - your point interested me because I have noticed that too, and I think it's because of a familiarity of cadence, if you know what I mean. If you decide to use fe instead of fo, then the whole sentence sounds wrong unless you change the entire thing and use a southern "lilt" as well, then fe works well enough, but just using fe instead of fo sounds weird. I think maybe it's as odd as an English southerner throwing a flat northern "bath" into a southern sentence.

I remember a while ago the presenters on a radio station had obviously been given a directive to pronounce regional place names in the accent of the region, and not in their own accents, and so you heard southerners referring not to NEW-carstle, but New-CASSLE, but it just sounded bizarre in southern accents. I think an accent has to be pretty consistent with itself, and use of borrowed words can work well if said in that accent, which is what I guess happens when Bryan says gyda, but fe and fo are more accented and harder to slip in.
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Re: Quick accent question

Postby MikeEllwood » Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:50 am

Kind of related: I'd got it into my head that the Gog for "to say" was usually "deud" and the De was "dweud" (with the w definitely pronounced), but someone said something to me today that undermined this simplistic picture.

What are other people's perceptions?

[Looking at Gareth King's Pocket Modern W. Dictionary reminds me of "gweud", which I think is definitely southern-only, isn't it?]
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Re: Quick accent question

Postby bontddu » Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:58 am

MikeEllwood wrote:Kind of related: I'd got it into my head that the Gog for "to say" was usually "deud" and the De was "dweud" (with the w definitely pronounced), but someone said something to me today that undermined this simplistic picture.

What are other people's perceptions?

[Looking at Gareth King's Pocket Modern W. Dictionary reminds me of "gweud", which I think is definitely southern-only, isn't it?]


Just written phonetically for a second, I hear mainly wade in southern and dade in northern. One of the things I really love about Welsh is the give and take in pronunciation. Sometimes you hear wade, sometimes gwade, sometimes efo other times gyda - at first this is frustrating to a learner, but when you progress a bit it's actually a really nice feature of the language.
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Re: Quick accent question

Postby Aran » Thu Mar 06, 2014 2:42 am

That's an interesting take, bontddu - and sounds pretty plausible to me...:)

MikeEllwood wrote:Kind of related: I'd got it into my head that the Gog for "to say" was usually "deud" and the De was "dweud" (with the w definitely pronounced), but someone said something to me today that undermined this simplistic picture.


It was always going to happen...:wink:

You'll hear deud and dweud up here, as likely as each other - and then I'd say you'd hear gweud and dweud pretty often down there - not so sure how much deud does or doesn't travel...:)
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