For Fluent Speakers Of Irish

We don't have words for yes or no because we don't need them. In Irish, 'yes' is approximated with the positive form of a verb and 'no' is approximated with the negative.

"An bhfuil tú ann?" (Are you there?)

"Táim" or "táim ann" (I am, or I am there = yes)
or
"Nílim/ nílim ann" (I am not, or I am not there = no)

So it's almost exactly the opposite of an 'inability to make a decision' and implies that a little more thought has to go into giving a definitive answer to a question.

People use "tá" or "níl" as substitutes but they're incomplete and inelegant, meaning just "is" or "isn't" respectively. Likewise, "is ea" or "'sea" just means "it is thus" or "it it not" - we have a few different ways of asking "is it?" and sometimes one form of answering is less appropriate than another.

I've always liked the fact that the equivalent of "I don't care" is, in Irish, a positive verb: is cuma liom. This implies that not caring is a state all its own, and an active pursuit as opposed to the absence of giving a shit.
 
We don't have words for yes or no because we don't need them. In Irish, 'yes' is approximated with the positive form of a verb and 'no' is approximated with the negative.

"An bhfuil tú ann?" (Are you there?)

"Táim" or "táim ann" (I am, or I am there = yes)
or
"Nílim/ nílim ann" (I am not, or I am not there = no)

So it's almost exactly the opposite of an 'inability to make a decision' and implies that a little more thought has to go into giving a definitive answer to a question.

People use "tá" or "níl" as substitutes but they're incomplete and inelegant, meaning just "is" or "isn't" respectively. Likewise, "is ea" or "'sea" just means "it is thus" or "it it not" - we have a few different ways of asking "is it?" and sometimes one form of answering is less appropriate than another.

I've always liked the fact that the equivalent of "I don't care" is, in Irish, a positive verb: is cuma liom. This implies that not caring is a state all its own, and an active pursuit as opposed to the absence of giving a shit.

This.

Tá = It is.
Níl = It is not.

BUT:
Tá or níl doesn't make sense by itself unless you're refering to yourself, so Is it raining? 'Tá'. is wrong. 'Tá sé' makes sense. Likewise Is it raining? 'Níl' makes no sense.

http://www.focloir.ie/en/dictionary/ei/yes?q=yes

Also explains the difference, though some of those examples are dire and I'd give out to someone for using them. "'Seán?' 'Yes Miss?' 'A Sheáin?' 'Is ea, a Mháistreás?'" makes no f-ing sense.
 
This.

Tá = It is.
Níl = It is not.

BUT:
Tá or níl doesn't make sense by itself unless you're refering to yourself, so Is it raining? 'Tá'. is wrong. 'Tá sé' makes sense. Likewise Is it raining? 'Níl' makes no sense.

http://www.focloir.ie/en/dictionary/ei/yes?q=yes

Also explains the difference, though some of those examples are dire and I'd give out to someone for using them. "'Seán?' 'Yes Miss?' 'A Sheáin?' 'Is ea, a Mháistreás?'" makes no f-ing sense.

It's worse, Blues-y: Tá and níl by themselves have no article, and they mean just "is" and "isn't" - even more nonsensical.

For the interested parties, "'A Sheáin?...'is ea, a mháistreás?'" would be translated as "O John" (archaic in English but properly vocative in Irish, in common with some other European languages and notoriously with Latin) and "is is, o mistress" - which is just fucking awful.
 
I was reading about the lack of yes and no in the Irish Language. Can anyone explain why this came about? Is it a reflection on the inability to make a decision ?
I'm sure there are other languages which do not possess vocabulary for yes and no but this struck me as odd.

We have affirmative and negative responses to questions:

Is there...?

There is / There is not.


Will they have?

They will have / They will not have.

It's all related to the verb.
Which I like.
 

DOB

 
We don't have words for yes or no because we don't need them. In Irish, 'yes' is approximated with the positive form of a verb and 'no' is approximated with the negative.

"An bhfuil tú ann?" (Are you there?)

"Táim" or "táim ann" (I am, or I am there = yes)
or
"Nílim/ nílim ann" (I am not, or I am not there = no)

So it's almost exactly the opposite of an 'inability to make a decision' and implies that a little more thought has to go into giving a definitive answer to a question.

People use "tá" or "níl" as substitutes but they're incomplete and inelegant, meaning just "is" or "isn't" respectively. Likewise, "is ea" or "'sea" just means "it is thus" or "it it not" - we have a few different ways of asking "is it?" and sometimes one form of answering is less appropriate than another.

I've always liked the fact that the equivalent of "I don't care" is, in Irish, a positive verb: is cuma liom. This implies that not caring is a state all its own, and an active pursuit as opposed to the absence of giving a shit.

Will you go away out outta that biy and stop showing the rest of us up with your fancy schmancy lingo like :x
 

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