Welsh: chi

Oisín Óg

New Member
US - English & Russian
Helo pawb,

I've been studying Welsh for a little while now. I met this guy in a chat room who says he's a native Welsh speaker from the Valleys near Cardiff. He refuses to use ti in his speech with most people, citing the fact that people should be treated with respect and that chi is neutral.

As a speaker of a language with a T-V distinction this strikes me as odd, because I wouldn't use the V form with anybody on the internet.

(By the way, he also insists on not mutating blocio in the sentence Mae'r haul wedi cael ei blocio i mas. Generally the impression I get is that he's not a native (at worst) and that the dialect he speaks is just like that, but in either case he corrects me.)

Is this valid? Or did he learn Welsh in a school or something?
 
  • Tegs

    Mód ar líne
    English (Ireland)
    Some borrowings from English are not mutated because they sound too different when mutated and might not be understood, e.g. “golff” would never mutate to “olff”. There is no such reason for not mutating blocio though. Having said that, “haul” can be either feminine or masculine (see Geiriadur Prifysgol Cymru). In such cases you are free to use the word as either, and mutate accordingly. As a feminine noun, it would not lead to “blocio” mutating, but as a masculine noun it would. Mae’r haul wedi cael ei blocio mas / Mae’r haul wedi cael ei flocio mas - both are ok (but note that there should be no “i” before “mas” and “mas” is an informal spelling, the more standard spelling being “maes”).

    As for ti/chi I have never met anyone who doesn’t use both. One is more appropriate than the other in specific circumstances. In a chatroom I would probably follow other people’s lead. If they were using chi I would do the same, and if they were using ti so would I. Some people might err on the side of caution and always use chi if they don’t know the person they are talking to, in order not to offend anyone. Have a look at the “maes e” chatroom, I don’t know if it’s in use any more but you will be able to see from there if there is a particular trend towards using chi.
     

    Oisín Óg

    New Member
    US - English & Russian
    Yeah, I had the thought that he may be interpreting haul as a feminine noun. He seemed fairly adamant that I in fact should not mutate blocio.

    As for i mas, that was just my quotation of what he said; I learned allan for that meaning anyway. This just puts me in greater doubt!

    It's nice to hear that someone else thinks it might be strange to use only V forms; I generally use chi with him because that's what he says but it really bothers me since I have pretty much only said ti.

    Thanks a lot Tegs!!
     

    Tegs

    Mód ar líne
    English (Ireland)
    “Allan” is the north Wales way of saying “out”, the south Wales dialect uses “mas/maes”. So, you can use either. You are not wrong in your mutation of blocio either, so don’t worry about it. If he prefers to use chi I would do as he prefers. It is better to respect the other person’s wishes in such cases, otherwise you might cause offense. It will help you practice your use of chi forms, so use it as a learning experience ;)

    And you’re welcome/ croeso :)
     

    Emsiko

    New Member
    French-France
    Bore da
    I just discovered this forum about Welsh (that I'm learning with great great pleasure).
    As a Breton, our tongues having a lot of similarities, I'll talk about this note about "this guy in a chat room who says he's a native Welsh speaker from the Valleys near Cardiff. He refuses to use ti in his speech with most people, citing the fact that people should be treated with respect and that chi is neutral "
    In (ex)Breton speaking part of Brittany, there are parts where the Ti (Te in Breton) is never used (well, I should say "was never used" because our poor Breton tongue is now dead, at least in its native expression) : even from parents to children (and reverse). you said "C'whi ( = Welsh Chi). And what was funny, is that when those people spoke French, they also used the "Vous", which in France would be considered as an "old fashioned noble class" way of speaking (currently, except in noble families - and bot all noble families - children and parents never say "Vous" to their parents, they say Tu (Ti).
    But in the Breton way, this "C'hwi" has nothing to see with "upper class" or "noble" and is not associated with "respect". It was the common usen that's all.
    I don't know in Welsh, but it could be the same, and so, when this guy says that using the "Chi" he will never use the "ti" because the Chi is more respectful, the difference between both Chi and Ti is more nuanced than this
    I hope my English, studied a long long time ago, is not too old fashioned, and is able to be understood :)
    Emsiko
     

    Tegs

    Mód ar líne
    English (Ireland)
    this guy in a chat room who says he's a native Welsh speaker from the Valleys near Cardiff.
    He refuses to use ti in his speech with most people, citing the fact that people should be treated with respect and that chi is neutral "
    This is unusual. Ordinarily, you use "chi" with people you don't know, and "ti" with friends. As for family members, I think most of my friends who are in their 30s would call their parents and grandparents "ti" but I do know some people of the same age who call them "chi". I don't know anyone who would call younger family members "chi", that's very unusual.
     
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