New laziness, new reason to be optimistic about Welsh?!

Since completing my degree in the Welsh language, I’ve been intent on ensuring Welsh is used as ‘properly’ as possible.
For example, I regularly rack my brain with potential re-translations of road signs and bilingual newsletters from companies just trying to be nice and stimulate those amongst us who ‘need’ everything in Welsh. I believe in linguistic perfection, I suppose.
But as I learned from my time in university, there are two forms of the Welsh language – literal and spoken – both rather different to each other in many ways.
Spoken Welsh is the language used by all who speak the ancient tongue as a basic means of communication while literal Welsh is that which is seen in poetry, bilingual publications and road signage.
Now considering it took a 3-year visit to the university of Aberystwyth to even begin to understand and comprehend the literal variety of my national language, I worry about how Welsh is portrayed in our nation itself. There are 750,000 people who understand the spoken form of Welsh (id every Welsh speaker), yet a smaller number understand the literal version.
Would it not be better to write things in language that promotes those who merely comprehend spoken Welsh (which is perfectly fine, by the way) and not put people off Welsh by writing in text that can only be understood (or even bothered to be read) by those who’ve chosen to read Welsh whilst destroying their livers in university?
Why do we need to write ‘daethant o hyd i’r ffaith nad oedd llawer o bobl yn ymwybodol o’r Gymraeg fel iaith y gellir ei deall yn hawdd’ when we can write in a much more welcoming way, as such for example ‘naethon nhw ffeindio allan bod lot o bobl ddim yn gwybod bod Cymraeg yn hawdd i ddeall’?
I took this ‘lazier’ view on Welsh when translating some signs for our school library. Why should I write in Welsh that not even Welsh-speaking teachers could understand, when writing in simpler Welsh would promote learners’ views on Welsh? I find it much better hearing students say “Hey, I actually understood that” and not “What the hell is that?” Catch my drift?
Welsh as a literal tongue will never die, mainly thanks to poetry and such media as the internet and books that are immortalised in our famous libraries. There’s no need to worry that changing certain signage or ways we bilingualise publications into more adaptable, comprehensible and common language would destroy the core of Cymraeg. I promise.
And how do I know? Because I say all this with a smiley face 🙂


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