Welsh expressions and sayings...

What would you say if you were Welsh?

1 to 20 of 107 messages
08/06/2007 at 15:15
My wife's sister's 16-year old daughter is working as a councilor at a handicapped kids camp this summer.

She's American, the camp is based here in Colorado, but a couple of her fellow councilors are Welsh. She wondered if I could give her any uniquely welsh sayings or expressions that she could use on her new Welsh friends to surprise... amuse... and... erm, impress them. I understand that they are both male!

Naturally, not being Welsh, I couldn't help! But does anyone here have any suggestions?


Edited: 08/06/2007 at 15:15
08/06/2007 at 15:25
I don't speak welsh, but some of the funnier welsh sayings (well...supposedly):

"Who's coat is that jacket hanging up on the floor?"

"See those two houses over there? Mines the
one in the middle"

"And there it was....gone!"

"I'll be there now, in a minute"

Edited: 08/06/2007 at 15:30
08/06/2007 at 15:39
Gimmie a phrase I will translate for you
08/06/2007 at 15:54
Thanks Gregory... I guess I'm looking for Welsh expressions... in English!

(Runs for cover...)

08/06/2007 at 15:56
And I should probably make it clearer... I'm looking for 'everyday' Welsh expressions that she can slip casually into conversation...

08/06/2007 at 16:04
Have you never seen Fireman Sam, Andrew?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e0b0RdVAMCs
08/06/2007 at 16:46
I'd say it depends what part of Wales they're from.

I work with a guy from Carmarthen and i can't understand a word he says!

The dialect is totally different, so are they from the north or south? Or somewhere in the middle? They might just look blank at you if you pick the wrong end.
08/06/2007 at 17:48
Navy Blue, as a sort of shock 'oh what now' sort of expression is used a lot up north here, mainly by old people thoughm, thats all I can think of
08/06/2007 at 18:11


A common expression still used by Welsh, Wenglish and English sprakers alike is

Ach-a-fi - meaning discusting!

Pronounce it Achhhhhh-ah-Vi


08/06/2007 at 18:24
Are there no Scottish councilors she could hang about with instead? We've got hunners of mental patter. By the way.

;)


"It's psychosomatic. You need a lobotomy. I'll get a saw."

08/06/2007 at 21:59
"Ach-a-fi - meaning discusting!"
Or, Ach Y fi
Pronunciation would help, ach with ch as in Scottish Loch, uh and vee.
So, ach-uh-veeh.
I'm only a dwt..... I'm only little.
w pronounced like ou in should, so d-ou-t.

It's raining old women and walking sticks or it's raining stair rods (a favourite of mine) also rendered it's coming down stair rods, self explanatory. Again, It's empting down (Wenglish).

His water in his teeth, out of breath.

"Sh'mae?" (sh-my)or its Wenglish equivalent "How be?", as in how are you or Hi! (to be authentic you'd have to drop the initial h in how be)
Evening greeting? "Good night" (not as in farewell but as in good evening) also noswaith dda, nos (short o) w-eye-th (th as in thong) tha (with the dd pronounced as th in the,).

Remember that the Welsh have a fine skill in sarcasm so, "she looks well in that" means, "she looks bloody awful in that".

Stout means fat, careful means mean and so does skinny as in "don't be so skinny". I hasten to add for the sake of our American cousins that mean in this case means penny pinching or unwilling to share or be fair.

"Squitz" means snap or ditto or I have the same.

Achi mochyn or ach y mochyn rendered ah-chee mo-chin (see pronunciation of ch above), dirty pig.

He always runs against the wind... he always makes things difficult for himself.



"...the moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; those who are in the shadows of life; the sick, the needy the handicapped and submariners. " ~ Last Speech of Hubert H. Humphrey

Edited: 08/06/2007 at 22:14
08/06/2007 at 22:13


Yooer twp you are Macsen !!!!


;)))
08/06/2007 at 22:16
An' ewe are a twpsin too Tony bach, doolahli in fact.
;0)
I remember my Gran saying on my first leave after joining the RN, "There's tidy 'ou do look in ewer uniform bach".
(leave out the y from any "you" sound.)

"...the moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; those who are in the shadows of life; the sick, the needy the handicapped and submariners. " ~ Last Speech of Hubert H. Humphrey

Edited: 08/06/2007 at 22:25
09/06/2007 at 00:07
A cwtch is a cuddle to welsh folk. "dyw dyw" is used quite a bit too as in "Dyw dyw, it's hot innit?!" Or when things are going wrong there's "Pam fi Dyw" which means "Why me God?" (I think)
09/06/2007 at 01:21



A "cwtch" has more than one meaning.

It can indeed mean a "cuddle."

But it also means to hide something:-
"go and cwtch that away."

It also means to lie down:-

(telling the dog) "Go and cwtch down!"

It can mean an understairs cupboad or a coal house!

So it is quite possible to say:-

He was cwtched in the cwtch with 'is girlfriend 'aving a cwtch!

09/06/2007 at 13:39
Tony,
It was widely used for hutch too when I was a kid. Rabbit cwtch, pigeon cwtch etc.
BTW it's Duw, Duw (God,God) and pam fi (vee)Duw? (why me God?) pronounced like dew but without that annoying English habit of slipping in the "y" or "j" sound, you know, djew.
When did that start happening btw? When did Hughes become Hyughes and huge become hyuge?
Remember when their and they're had 2 distinct syllables? It wasn't so long ago.
Then there were the slightly stretched "A" in dance and chance etc. but never daaance or daunce as now. If you had spoken like that when we were young you would have been assumed to be foreign or intelectually challenged.
Hoever I digress.......

Cwpi down, kneel or crouch, cock over (vault or cross over a fence for example).

Sdim ots i fi, sometims shortened to sdim ots, (sdim ots ee vee)... no matter (no odds) to me. "Am I bovvered!"
Here's a good one for the modern teenager, "Beth bynnag" (baith bunnag), "Whatever"

"...the moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; those who are in the shadows of life; the sick, the needy the handicapped and submariners. " ~ Last Speech of Hubert H. Humphrey

09/06/2007 at 13:49
So, Mac, if "dew" isn't "djew", is "Dew" pronounced "Doo" like the Americans do or "De-oo" in a sort of Haime Counties way?
09/06/2007 at 14:13
The best way to describe it is to say that it sounds like the person is saying JEW with the D sound instead of the J! (In fact lazy Wenglish does sometimes sound more like JEW JEW)

Leading on from what Mac says about many sayings and statements in Wenglish or English spoken by Welsh being sarcastic, it is true that many things said have a sarcastic/ironic meaning which can be fully understood by fellow speakers, and according to how it is said at the time, it can have different meanings.

A lot of it comes from the influence of spoken Welsh and the trait for statements and questions often having only the distinction of how it is said.

An example might be "There's terrible isn't it" (welsh speakers speaking english) or "There's terrible innit" (wenglish)

It probably means "tough luck, but am I bothered?"

It can be mistaken as a question by english speakers and mistakenly inviting a continuation of the subject, but it is more likely to be intended as a closing statement.

It can sometimes express genuine empathy, but more often than not is just a polite way of saying "Am I Bovered!"
Edited: 09/06/2007 at 14:17
09/06/2007 at 14:22

Oh and Yes Mac, we too refered to Rabbit cwtch etc.

Leading on from your other observation and "cwpi down," we also extended that to a "cwpi hole," meaning a hiding place!


Edited: 09/06/2007 at 14:25
09/06/2007 at 14:24


Then there were;

The "baily" - back yard or patio

The "gwli" - rear/side lanes to houses


It's all coming back!


;)))


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