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TAAT: Proud to be Welsh but most don't seem to want "Welsh" things

126 replies

Wenglishisfab · 02/08/2017 23:02

I've started a new account for this but am a long time MN poster.

And I know I'm going to get flamed.

Reading the Enjoying being Welsh thread (and other things on social media) it strikes me that most people born and bred in Wales are proud to be Welsh. But, and it may be a small minority, most posters seem to feel that Welsh speakers seem to have a monopoly on being Welsh - just because they speak Welsh makes them superior to non Welsh speakers etc.

On the other hand, government plans to introduce Welsh history and culture into non Welsh medium schools, and wanting to increase the numbers of Welsh speakers is seen as forcing Welsh down everyone's throats.

Complaints are made about replacing road signs in Wales with Welsh first. I actually don't see why we need a bilingual Merthyr Tudfil or Caerffili when they are pronounced exactly the same, and there are lots of other place names across South Wales like this. Eventually most people would learn to spell it the original Welsh way.

What's the point of speaking or learning Welsh when everyone can speak English anyway is a sentence seen and heard over and over again from Welsh born and bred people.

So my questions are: why are so many people proud to be Welsh but reject anything and everything to do with Welsh language, culture and history. It's seen as a waste of money, kids could be learning far more important languages such as French or Spanish or Mandarin...

Most people see Plaid Cymru as Nationalists seeking only independence when, from what I can see, they are the only party sticking up for Wales and Welsh people (yes they have their flaws but the party has moved on from the days of being only Welsh speakers).

Most people (in South Wales especially) are pro-royalists and happy to wave the Union Jack when some Royal visits their area.

Is it because of the lack of good Welsh media? Looking at most supermarkets, the main papers around here are the Sun, Mail etc. Even the Western Mail is anti "Cymraeg." There was a story in there during the last couple of years about a Welsh team rugby player becoming a doctor "despite being educated at a Welsh language school" (paraphrase).

I class myself as Welsh and British. British only because the Welsh were the original British, long before England came into being.

That's all a bit garbled sorry, but I genuinely want to know why people are so proud to be Welsh but reject most things that mark us out as not English. If Westminster have their way, the Welsh Assembly will lose more and more powers and we will become EnglandandWales. Is that what people want? Are we happy to become an English county?

OP posts:
cardibach · 03/08/2017 20:32

SD you really aren't on very strong ground until you can tell us the English word for lots of everyday words, for example
And that's just a few off the top of my head.
All languages borrow from others and technilogical advances require all languages to make words up.
You are making yourself look foolish rather than 'proving' Welsh isn't a real, living language.

SD60659 · 03/08/2017 20:33

Sorry MUM - 3 of those are what I class as cheating, and blatantly borrowing from the English language so no crow for me this evening!

Someone earlier brought up a good example, Swansea,
That's Abertawe in Welsh - now that's a different word, in my view that qualifies.

Swapping/adjusting the spelling of "Propane" by dropping the E and calling it "Propan" just will not qualify. And like I said, I could provide a HUGE list of words, that was just a quick head spin around my garage done in a few seconds and even you failed on 3, or arguably 4.

You are a very good sport for taking part though, and none of what I'm saying is intended to be offensive to you so please don't take it that way :)

MikeUniformMike · 03/08/2017 20:34

I get what you mean but if I was translating something, I'd use the nearest word. Some words just don't have exactly the same meaning.
English is a much richer language.

There are words that the English don't have. One that springs to mind is know in English compared to the French equivalent connaitre and savoir.

MikeUniformMike · 03/08/2017 20:36

I studied sciences through the medium of Welsh and propan is welsh for propane.

What are the other 3?

SD60659 · 03/08/2017 20:41


Please read what I actually wrote, I'm not complaining that languages borrow from other languages, that's happened throughout history. My issue is that the CLAIM was made that there is an alternative for ALL English words in the Welsh language - there isn't. Dropping a letter or two off doesn't qualify. Adding one doesn't qualify. I'm not trying to be argumentative. Languages evolve and that's fine, I speak 3 languages. Welsh being my 2nd one.

The comment that people are objecting to (as in MY comment) was that Welsh is an incomplete and outdated language (or something to that effect) and sadly that is the case, Please read my PP;s again and you'll see what I'm saying. I'm not trying to be a twat and I don't see how I've made my self look foolish, I think I've demonstrated my point quite well.

MikeUniformMike · 03/08/2017 20:41

I don't really like the idea of a poor little harmless crow being eaten. Are you going to eat it raw or roasted?

TroysMammy · 03/08/2017 20:43

Always makes me smile that a prominent member of The Welsh Language Society, Frederick Francis changed his name to Ffred Ffrancis to make him look more Welsh Smile.

SD60659 · 03/08/2017 20:46


English is a much richer language.

I think that pretty much hits it, that's a damn good way to put it. Maybe I would have got my point across sooner and in a less irritating way if I'd said that.

I'm glad you see what I'm talking about, some will, some wont, but as it's you I was addressing for the last few posts I appreciate that.

MikeUniformMike · 03/08/2017 20:47

Propane is a term, I think, that was coined by an English scientist. Other languages will have coined a name based on the word propane (e.g. the Spanish is propano). With chemical words, the prefix and suffix usually have a distinct meaning, so the prop will refer to something and the ane will mean something else. The suffix ol usually means that a chemical is an alcohol, which reminds me that it might be time for some.

MikeUniformMike · 03/08/2017 20:48

Ffred Ffransis even.

OvariesBeforeBrovaries · 03/08/2017 20:50

Welsh is an incomplete and outdated language

That's your opinion, not a fact.

I'm not trying to be a twat

Also your opinion, not a fact.

MikeUniformMike · 03/08/2017 20:53

the name Swansea is Nordic or Viking in origin I think. Abertawe is mouth of the river Tawe but I think Swansea was something like Sweynsey.

SD60659 · 03/08/2017 20:54



Bearberry · 03/08/2017 20:55

I'm English and live in Pembrokeshire. Here, the Welsh medium schools are considered in the league tables to be the better performing schools. I don't speak Welsh but know a few odd words, I would like to learn more as it's invaluable when encountering Welsh speaking patients (which I do, quite often). Neither of us are Welsh but DH and I plan to send DD to the Welsh unit at our local primary school, it has much smaller classes and great results. I think that being able to speak Welsh will be a very useful skill for her.

SD60659 · 03/08/2017 20:58


I believe you are correct there, I'd go with Nordic.

Take Fishguard for example, pretty plain in English, but in Welsh it's Abergwaun (mouth of the river Gwaun) - which is a more accurate description of the place itself. Plenty more examples as I'm sure you're aware, I'm just glad you can see what I was getting at - that's what matters. I found the conversation interesting and we both (as did others) made good points on our sides of the discussion. If only more threads could make good arguments without being wankers.

Of course there are people here who will think I'm the wanker, maybe some will think you are, but I enjoyed it - it's been fun discussing this with you!

MikeUniformMike · 03/08/2017 21:06

Yes, it's been fun. I think I am proud of being Welsh, and of being bilingual. I have to think with some of the place names. It isn't obvious that Casgwent and Chepstow, or Mold and Y Wyddgrug are the same place unless you know.

SD60659 · 03/08/2017 21:11

I wouldn't say I'm "proud" of it, but nor am I ashamed of it. It's just something I happen to be. I don't go in for all the imaginary boundaries etc. As far as I'm concerned we all live on the same chunk of land. But that's a whole other topic!

Food for thought - Tenby. Dinbych Y Pysgod
Milford Haven - Aberdaugleddau


OvariesBeforeBrovaries · 03/08/2017 21:12


No that's not going to cut it sorry :) not being a twat though.

SD60659 · 03/08/2017 21:18

Soz bearberry I missed your post. I also live in Pembs and can recommend some very good Welsh teachers should you wish to learn. My colleague is English and hadn't a clue with regards the Welsh language this time last year but he's been picking it up on the job. It's far from impossible. MUM is clearly far better at it than me but if you want to learn to speak Welsh (and read/understand it) then I can certainly point you in the right direction locally.

SD60659 · 03/08/2017 21:24


You already know what it means so I won't waste my time explaining it to you.

Maybe you'd like to RTFT now? Just so you don't make a further pillock of your self.

I'll sum it up for you, a...

actually no I won't because it's been summed up more than once already. If you bother to read it, you'll see that there was some disagreement, turned into a mini debate, and the poster I had a minor disagreement with have well and truly sorted it out, good points were made on both sides, and we both acknowledged that.

Isn't that what forums are for?

So once again


OvariesBeforeBrovaries · 03/08/2017 21:49

Grin Grin Grin

cardibach · 03/08/2017 22:21

SD The comment that people are objecting to (as in MY comment) was that Welsh is an incomplete and outdated language (or something to that effect) and sadly that is the case, Please read my PP;s again and you'll see what I'm saying. I'm not trying to be a twat and I don't see how I've made my self look foolish, I think I've demonstrated my point quite well
I'm well aware what comment people (including me) are objecting to. I would say you haven't demonstrated your point well - is English incomplete and outdated because it borrowed the word for yacht? Or bungalow? Or Ballet? All languages borrow. All languages make up words. Welsh is not alone in this, and the need to 'borrow' words from other languages doesn't reflect badly on it (or any language). Your view is really very narrow minded and inflexible, fixating on one aspect of language, in one language, and using that to judge the value of that language whilst apparently failing to understand how language works.


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thatstoast · 03/08/2017 22:35

There's no Welsh word for croissant! Can you believe that? What a backwards nation.

Wenglishisfab · 03/08/2017 22:51

Only now checking back in and catching up on this thread.

SD my opening post was aimed at people like you. People who see no value in Welsh language and culture and who write it off as a pointless, out of date, dying language.

Firmly tongue in cheek, but when are the English going to come up with an original English word for penguin???

OP posts:
Wenglishisfab · 03/08/2017 23:07

I've just done a very quick search but English also needs to come up with original words for:


All words of Welsh origin.

OP posts:
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