How is this song title pronounced?
October 4, 2013 11:14 AM   Subscribe

[PronunciationFilter] The title is: Crathadh 't 'Aodaich & Zbadba from the album Mo-Di by the band Mouth Music. I think the title is Gaelic but I'm not sure. How would I say the title? Or what is a close approximation of the true pronunciation?
posted by zorm to Writing & Language (4 answers total)
Crathadh 't 'Aodaich is Gaelic; Zbadba is certainly not—it looks like some form of Slavic but may be deliberately distorted (cf. the word for 'wedding': Russian and Ukrainian свадьба [svad'ba], Serbocroatian свадба [svadba], Czech and Slovak svadba, and note that Cyrillic в [v] looks like Latin b). I'm not a speaker of Gaelic (though I do know some Irish), but I have a copy of Teach Yourself Gaelic, and I can tell you that th is pronounced /h/, dh is a sort of gargle (like Modern Greek γ), ao is "between English oo and ee" (something like Turkish ı), and ch is as in German (or Modern Greek χ), with the i indicating palatalization (as in German ich), so it comes out something like KRAH-hah t-EEdaχ (with EE indicating that weird Turkish-like vowel). They seem to have gone out of their way to make it as difficult to pronounce (for non-Scots) as possible!
posted by languagehat at 11:33 AM on October 4, 2013 [2 favorites]

I'm Irish - just a little more info, the first syllable 'crath' would be pronounced like the ya in yacht (without saying the t-sound) so like, krah kind of, then the end I think would either be oo as in mood or a as in man.
krah-hoo as languagehat said, or krah-hah. Not sure which - kind of rusty!

Aodaich - the first syllable I thought would be pronounced more ay as in pay...but maybe there's a big difference between Scots Gaelic and Irish. I could be totally wrong there. Aodh in Irish is definitely pronounced 'ay'. Last syllable I agree with languagehat.
posted by cornflakegirl at 2:58 PM on October 4, 2013

> but maybe there's a big difference between Scots Gaelic and Irish.

Yeah, it's pretty big (they've been separated for many centuries now), which is why I'm tentative about my pronunciation recommendations. I could do a pretty spiffy job with my Connemara Irish!
posted by languagehat at 5:12 PM on October 4, 2013

Based on my two or three years of learning Scots Gaelic after high school (which I haven't used much in the past decade except to remind myself that I still can listen to BBC Radio nan Gàidheal and get most of it), languagehat would seem to be pretty much spot on with their description of the pronunciation. Another reference point is that in Scots Gaelic, 'ao' is pretty close to Finnish ö.
posted by Talkie Toaster at 2:02 AM on October 5, 2013

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