Here is the setext version of this lesson.
The verb "to be" is more important in Welsh than in most languages, since it is often used as a helping verb, as it is in English when we say "I am going". We will explain more about this in Section 3.2, but for now we will concentrate on just the verb "to be". Here is the conjugation of the present tense of "bod", the verb "to be" .
|1st||Rydw i||I am||Rydyn ni||We are|
|2nd||Rwyt ti||You are||Rydych chi||You are|
|3rd|| Mae e|
| He is|
|Maen nhw||They are|
Welsh adopts the position that the verb comes first, followed by the subject, which in this case is the personal pronoun.
| Mae afalau yma|
Mae Tom a Mary
| Apples are here|
Tom and Mary are
Like many Indo-European languages, Welsh makes a distinction between the familiar form of "you" ("ti") and the polite form ("chi") which doubles as the plural. The rule of thumb is that you use "ti" when talking to friends whom you know well (peers), children, animals (except maybe those bigger than you that you don't want to offend, like that bull over there), and Deity. However, there is a great deal of variation among speakers as to which form to use, and even sometimes a discrepancy between what a person thinks they use in various situations and what they actually use. There may be a somewhat different standard between young people and old people as to when you know somebody well enough to start using "ti", with the young people tending to be more informal. I know one person who called his wife "chi" through 50 years of marriage, using the "ti" form only when addressing Deity. You should use "chi" towards anyone to whom respect is due, either because that person is older than you, is a complete stranger (like a shopkeeper), or has some authority over you, like being your boss or the person who is examining you for fluency in Welsh. Which form to use is a matter of society, not of language.
Failure to use the formal form when you should could make you appear to be pushy or American or both; it could also be construed as insulting. Using the formal form with someone to whom you would normally say "ti" comes across as coldness or anger.
One of the first things one learns in another language is how to ask questions, presumably so that one can enquire things of the natives. Never mind the fact that most of the time, you won't understand the answer anyway.
|Ydw i?||Am I?||Ydyn ni?||Are we?|
|Wyt ti?||Are you?||Ydych chi?||Are you?|
| Ydy e?|
| Is he?|
|Ydyn nhw?||Are they?|
Notice that in the first and second persons, you just drop the "R"  and add a question mark. In speaking, there is a rising inflection for questions (the question mark is not completely decorative).
You should notice that there is an underlying pattern exposed in the interrogative form that is broken only by the "ti" form.
So far, so good. Now we come to the issue of answering the questions posed in the previous section. I wish I could just tell you the Welsh word for "yes", and then you could all go home feeling like you'd accomplished something. Unfortunately, Welsh does not have a word for "yes". Or rather, Welsh has many dozens of words for "yes", each of which is reserved for and applicable only to a small set of circumstances. I figure some of you guys are wondering how you can pick up a Welsh girl, if it's so complicated for her to figure out the right word to use to say "yes". But don't despair: it's equally difficult for her to say "no".
Anyway, since there is no general word for "yes", you indicate a positive answer by affirming what was asked (at least the verb part). So we have:
|Ydw.||Yes I am.||Ydyn.||Yes we are.|
|Wyt.||Yes you are.||Ydych.||Yes you are.|
|Ydy.||Yes he/she is.||Ydyn.||Yes they are.|
So, for example, if someone asks you "Wyt ti?", you could answer "Ydw". If asked "Ydyn ni?", the answer would be either "Ydyn" or "Ydych", depending on whether the person answering the question considered himself/herself part of the "ni" in the original question.
To say "no", just use the word "Nag" followed by the word "yes" :
|Nag ydw.||No I'm not.||Nag ydyn.||No we aren't.|
|Nag wyt.||No you aren't.||Nag ydych.||No you aren't.|
|Nag ydy.||No he/she isn't.||Nag ydyn.||No they aren't.|
The great advantage of this way of saying "yes" and "no" is that it avoids potential ambiguities in the answer, especially when dealing with negative questions. For example:
Since we cannot be all things to all people, it is inevitable that we sometimes need to say we are not something. Here's how:
|Dydw i ddim||I am not||Dydyn ni ddim||We are not|
|Dwyt ti ddim||You are not||Dydych chi ddim||You are not|
|Dydy e/hi ddim||He/she is not||Dydyn nhw ddim||They are not|
These forms are just like the interrogative forms from Section 2.2, with the letter "d" stuck in front of them  and the word "ddim" taped on behind.
chi - you (plural and polite)
e (fe) - he
gartre - at home
hi - she
i (fi) - I
mewn pryd - in time
nhw - they
ni - we
ti - you (familiar)
yma - here
yna - there
yn Aberystwyth - in Aberystwyth
The forms "fi" and "fe" are used in some contexts.
[The answers can be found in a separate file.]
1. Translate the following sentences into English.
| Maen nhw yma.|
Rydyn ni mewn pryd.
Mae hi yn Aberystwyth.
Rydych chi yna.
Rwyt ti gartre.
2. Translate the following sentences into English.
| Dydw i ddim mewn pryd.|
Dydy e ddim yma.
Dydych chi ddim yn Aberystwyth.
Dydyn ni ddim gartre.
Dwyt ti ddim yna.
Dydy hi ddim mewn pryd.
Dydyn nhw ddim yn Aberystwyth.
3. Answer the following questions in Welsh affirmatively.
| Ydy e gartre?|
Ydyn nhw yna?
Ydyn ni mewn pryd?
Wyt ti yma?
Ydych chi mewn pryd?
Ydw i yn Aberystwyth?
4. Answer the questions in exercise 3 negatively.
5. Make up five sentences from the vocabulary
| Using the positive forms.|
Using the negative forms.
Using question forms.
Answer your questions from 5c.