Brezhoneg Unan/Lesson 3

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Basic Grammar rules[edit | edit source]

Sentence structure[edit | edit source]

English is an adjective-noun language, which means that the adjective (describing word) comes before the noun (described word), and the noun comes before the verb (action).
For instance:

The big ship went to Brittany.
(article) adjective noun verb (complement)

Breton on the other hand is a noun-adjective language, which means that the noun comes before the adjective.

Al lestr bras a yeas da Vreizh.
(article) noun adjective verb (complement)
(Literally: "The ship big went to Brittany").

Articles[edit | edit source]

Definite articles
  • al [al] before words beginning with "l": al labour "the work", al levr "the book", al liamm "the link", al louarn "the fox", al lur "the pound".
  • an [ãn] before "n", "d", "t", "h" and vowels: an nadoz "the needle", an dervenn "the oak", an tevenn "the cliff", an heol "the sun", an oabl "the sky".
  • ar [ar] before other letters: ar bara "the bread", ar c'harr "the car", ar mor "the sea", ar sae "the dress", ar yar "the hen".
Indefinite articles

The indefinite articles follow the same rule as the definite ones.

  • ul ['œl] before "l": ul lenn "a lake".
  • un ['œn] before "n", "d", "t", "h" and vowels: un daol "a table", un erer "un eagle".
  • ur ['œr] before other letters: ur falc'h "a scythe".

The Breton preposition e "in" is contracted with the definite article (al, an, ar) to give:

  • el before "l": el liorzh "in the garden".
  • en before "n", "d", "t", "h" and vowels: en ti "in the house".
  • er before other letters: er straed "in the street".

Exercises[edit | edit source]

Write the following sentences with the correct grammar.

  • The mayor is big. [Words : a? ("the"), zo ("is"), maer ("mayor") , bras ("big")]
  • The new town hall is beautiful. [Words : a? ("the"), zo ("is"), ti-kêr ("town hall") , brav ("beautiful")]
  • The big mayor went into the town hall, and thereafter to the old market. [Words : a? ("the"), da ("to"), tre e_ ("into") , goude-se ("after that, thereafter"), kozh ("old"), nevez ("new"), maer ("mayor"), bras ("big"), ti-kêr (town hall), a yeas ("went"), marc'had ("market"), ha ("and")]

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