Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Speaking Welsh....

Being Welsh I have always had a fasination not only with my country's accent but with the Welsh language itself.

I remember as an 8 year old returning to Wales and being put in a junior school that spoke Welsh ONLY every Wednesday. OMG I was lost and had no idea what anyone was saying to me!! My mam said it was the quietest day of the week for our household. LOL!! And when I did eventually start speaking very broken Welsh she said I sounded like a german gone wrong!! I guess having a strong Aussie accent didn't help when pronouncing words that have additional alphabetic letters in them.

Yes additional alphabetic letters, 28 letters in total in the Welsh Alphabet compared to the normal English alphabet which has 26. Now while this doesn't sound too bad it's the addition of letters such as ch, dd, ff, ll, ng, ph, rh and th that makes a huge difference.

This is the Welsh alphabet:

a b c ch d dd e f ff g ng h i l ll m n o p ph r rh s t th u w y

At home, Welsh wasn't a spoken language except of course for the swear words which we have all been taught. Our main language was english as it was in my parent's houses and before. Coming from South Wales, the use of the language isn't as prevelant as it is in the North.

Over the last few years I have been toying with the idea of enrolling in some form of correspondence school in order to learn my home language. In all honesty, I would love for my children to learn it to as I do try to tell them as much as I can about Wales. Being both born here in Australia I would love them to know about their ancestry.

Recently I have come in contact with Liz, a Welsh girl living in Mackay. Funnily enough, she grew up in Bedwas (not far from where I was born) before emigrating several years ago. She has passed on an internet link for some free online lessons (www.s4c.co.uk/dysgwyr/) so I am going to give that a go....

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