Unnamed tune in Irish

Unnamed tune in Irish

What’s the Irish name for tunes without a name? I think it’s either no name tune or unnamed tune but, well, in Irish. 🙂

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

‘Gan ainm’ would be the phrase you are thinking of (literally ‘without name’).

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

And how do pronounce it, please?

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

Gahn ehnnum. or try Gan N-M. This is one of those cases where Gaelic adds an extra syllable where there isn’t one, I think.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

Thank you Mackeagan.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

Thanks a million!

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

@Yhaal House: How do *I* pronounce it? Like an Englishman.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

Incorrectly, CreadurMawnOrganig.

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Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

I should have asked,"How does ONE pronounce it?"!
But I’m not English, I’m a Londoner.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

As well as ‘Gan Ainm’, I’ve heard ‘Ni Fios’ used alternatively. There’s a ‘Ni Fios’ tune finishing a set by Slide on the Flying Pig CD (Set’s called Connie the Soldier).

(Tho, that particular tune is actually called ‘Paddy Canny’s Toast’ or ‘The Rat In the Oven’ it turns out.)

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

@AB: Exactly.

@Mackeagan: As someone with a very rudimentary knowledge of Irish, I think I have heard (or seen transliterated) a slightly different pronunciation – something more like: "gon AH-nyim".

Would I be right in thinking that your pronunciation is based on Ulster Irish?

@TheHappyCamper: Google Translate (for all it is worth – it’s cleverer than me, anyway) translates ‘na fios’ as ‘I don’t know’. So, in context, I suppose it means ‘unknown’. (I think ‘fios’ is related to Welsh ‘gwybod’, dissimilar as they look to the untrained eye.)

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

@ mackeagan: "This is one of those cases where Gaelic adds an extra syllable where there isn’t one".

Well, if the syllable is spoken then it’s obviously there. Spelling is simply a representation of spoken language, and not always 100% accurate.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

LOL! Borderer, it is another language. You mean it is not always 100% as you expect it as an English speaker. Like Beaconsfield or hundreds of other things that don’t sound like you might expect.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

I wonder if Borderer pets his hamster, or his hampster, or whether he takes walks with his umbrella, or his umbarella.

Written Irish and Gaelic correspond very, very closely to their pronunciation *when you know the rules*, including the rules of epenthesis. Far more so than the bastard offspring of Anglo-Saxon and Norman French we call English does.

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Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

Very interesting, yet there are two similar words; ‘Ainm’ and ‘Anam’. First is ‘name’, second, ‘soul’. Heard the first uttered as ‘aniv’. So ‘nameless’ in Gaelic can be ‘gan aniv’ as opposed to ‘gan anam’.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

I’ve never heard ‘ainm’ pronounced anything like ‘aniv’. Have you mixed it up with another word like ainmhí (animal, where the ‘mh’ sounds like an English ‘v’, so sounds a bit like ‘anvi’), or leanbh (child/baby, sounds a bit like ‘Laniv’).

The closest word I can think of in English that sounds like ‘ainm’ is the word ‘annum’, as in per annum.

The word ‘anam’, meaning soul, sort of rhymes with the surname Bonham.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

I don’t follow what Ned and Calum are complaining about. The point I was making is that "ainm" in Irish is pronounced with two syllables - the second syllable is an integral part of the word as pronounced by modern Irish speakers and not "added", but the orthography does not reflect this. And I know this has nothing to do with English.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

> the orthography does not reflect this

But it does (well, strictly, this is a question of phonology, but let’s not overcomplicate things). You just don’t know the rules of the particular orthography, and why would you?

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Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

@GW: Thanks for the link. It seems that the approximation I quoted is closest to Ulster pronunciation.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

@Calum & Borderer: One way to look at it is that English Orthography, generally speaking*, requires each syllable to be represented with at least one of the six vowel characters used in English (a, e, i, o, u, y), even though it may sometimes be pronounced as a syllabic consonant; in Irish orthography, a syllable need not necessarily be represented by a vowel character (as above excepting ‘y’, of course), even though the pronunciation may contain one.

*Notable exceptions to this rule of English orthography are those words ending in ‘-sm’ and ‘-thm’.

Re: Unnamed tune in Irish

I always wondered why people don’t just give these tunes new names? It’s not sacrosanct that they have no name, they’ve just been forgotten! It’s not as if tune naming is a precise science in ITM now, is it?