Welsh

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Alternative forms

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Etymology

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Originally causative/denominative; from Proto-Brythonic *-haɣjed, from Proto-Celtic *-sagyetor (causative/denominative suffix). Cognate with Old Irish -igidir (Irish -igh, Manx -ee, Scottish Gaelic -ich).

Pronunciation

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Suffix

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-áu (first-person singular present -âf)

  1. creates a verbal noun from an adjectival root

Usage notes

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  • After roots ending in unvoiced obstruents, this suffix is found in the form -áu, although -hau is more usual after ll.
llac (loose)llacáu (to loosen)
iach (healthy)iacháu (to heal)
pell (far)pellhau (to move further away)
gwell (better)gwellhau, gwelláu (to improve)
  • -áu is also used after phonemically voiced plosives, which lose their voicing if also phonetically voiced.
gwag (empty)gwacáu (to empty)
caniad (permission, leave)caniatáu (to allow)
trist (sad)tristáu (to sadden)
Devoicing also occurs occasionally elsewhere.
cof (memory)coffáu (to commemorate)
cwbl (whole, complete)cwpláu (to complete) (also: cwblhau)
  • -hau is used after vowels and other consonants.
cryf (strong)cryfhau (to strengthen)
tew (fat)tewhau (to thicken)
ufudd (obedient)ufuddhau (to obey)
ysgafn (light)ysgafnhau (to lighten)

Derived terms

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