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Liom Leat Leis: Understanding the Meaning and Usage of this Irish Phrase

Updated: Mar 27, 2023

If you're learning the Irish language, you may have come across the phrase "liom leat leis" or seen it written as "le liom leat leis" or "leat liom leis". This phrase is commonly used in Ireland and has a few different meanings depending on the context in which it's used. In this article, we'll explore the various meanings of "liom leat leis" and how it's used in everyday conversations.


What Does "liom leat leis" Mean in Irish?

The literal translation of "liom leat leis" is "with me with you with him/her/it". This may seem confusing at first, but it's actually a shortened form of a longer sentence. The full sentence would be "Tá mé ag caint liom leat leis" which means "I am speaking with you with him/her/it". In other words, "liom leat leis" is a way of saying "I am speaking with you and someone else".



How is "liom leat leis" used in everyday conversations?

"liom leat leis" can be used in a few different ways depending on the situation. Here are a few examples:


1. Agreeing with someone

If someone says something that you agree with, you can respond with "liom leat leis" to show your support. This is similar to saying "I'm with you" in English. For example:


Person 1: Is aoibhinn liom Éirinn. (I love Ireland)

Person 2: Liom leat leis. (I'm with you)



2. Offering to accompany someone

"liom leat leis" can also be used to offer to accompany someone somewhere. For example, if you're going to the shops and your friend wants to come with you, you can say "liom leat leis" to invite them along.


3. Agreeing to someone to join you

If you want someone to join you in doing something, you can use "liom leat leis" to invite them. For example, if you're going for a walk and want your partner to come with you, you can say "liom leat leis" to ask them to join you.


4. Agreeing to something

Finally, "liom leat leis" can be used to agree to something that someone else has suggested. For example, if someone suggests going to a particular restaurant, you can respond with "liom leat leis" to agree to their suggestion.


How to use "liom leat leis" in the right context

While "liom leat leis" is a versatile phrase, it's important to use it in the right context. Using it incorrectly can lead to confusion or misunderstandings. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when using "liom leat leis":


Use "liom leat leis" when you're speaking to more than one person at the same time.

Use "liom leat leis" to offer to accompany someone or to invite someone to join you in doing something.

Use "liom leat leis" to agree with someone or to agree to something that someone else has suggested.


Is "liom leat leis" a formal or informal phrase in Irish?

"Liom leat leis" is generally an informal phrase in Irish, used in casual conversations and everyday situations. However, it can also be used in more formal contexts, depending on the tone and setting of the conversation.


What are some other common phrases in Irish?

Irish is a rich and complex language with many common phrases used in everyday conversation. Some other examples include "Slán go fóill" (goodbye for now), "Go raibh maith agat" (thank you), and "Dia dhuit" (hello).



Conclusion

"liom leat leis" is a unique phrase in the Irish language that has multiple meanings depending on how it's used. Whether you're agreeing with someone, offering to accompany them, or inviting them to join you, "liom leat leis" is a versatile phrase that can be used in a variety of contexts. It's important to use it correctly, however, to avoid confusion or misunderstandings. By following the tips we've outlined in this article, you can use "liom leat leis" confidently and effectively in your conversations in Irish. Keep practicing, and soon enough, you'll be speaking like a true Irish language speaker!







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