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Page history last edited by Sionned 7 years, 4 months ago

Lurch2's thoughts on the Welsh-English dictionaries he has (written 9 February 2013):


Oxford Pocket Modern Welsh Dictionary (for large pockets! :wink: )
Very useful, contains long descriptions of words demonstrating how they can be used, along with grammatical notes. Edited by Gareth King.
However, this necessarily means that the actual word count is comparatively low. Only occasionally causes any problem, though. Though it would not be the first port of call for me to look up a word I did not understand when reading (the meaning would then probably be made clear by the context in what I was reading itself, whilst other dictionaries would be more likely to actually contain the word).

Collins Gem Welsh Dictionaries
Very portable, can just be kept in a coat pocket constantly. But just contains possible translation(s) of the word with no explanation of how they differ (unlike Collins gem dictionaries of other languages). They seem to be the most common book available in any shop selling second-hand Welsh books. 
(If you can get a version which prints the main entry words in red, that is very useful in poor light conditions with small print! Got that as a present from someone in our Welsh Group, it's the one I keep in my coat pocket all the time now!)

Geiriadur Prifysgol Cymru (concise edition free online)
About as complete a dictionary as you can get, available online and as PDF downloads, so portable with the right device. Though it seems to contain just about every word that has ever appeared in print up to it being published, with explanations and differences, the concise online version contains fewer examples than the huge complete print version, which should be available in any decent Welsh library. It only deals with Welsh to English translation.

Geiriadur Yr Academi (available online)
Available for free online, this dictionary only deals with English to Welsh translation. (So in a way complements the University one!) A lot of people seem to think it is the best dictionary in a lot of ways.
very high word count, with many examples showing how words are used.
Not downloadable though, so only portable if you have an appropriate device and Internet access!
(Oh, and remember the online version is an ongoing process. If the words come up on a pink background, that section has not yet been edited, and there may be errors.)

Y Geiriadur Mawr.
It is certainly a big dictionary, one for the bookshelf.
My first port of call for anything vaguely literary.
Not as good as the University dictionary or the Academi dictionary, but more accessible as it is a real book! Basically a high word count, including a lot of words marked as obsolete, more useful if you are reading literature than looking up words to use in speech. Again, just simple lists of word(s) as possible translations, with no explanation.
(And I just like it as a physical object, especially the first edition one I have [I just like the dust jacket design and the feel of it! :geek: ])

Y Geiriadur Newydd
The precursor to Y Geiriadur Mawr, basically containing all the words except the obsolete ones. It also contains notes on grammar and pronounciation, lists of how verbs are conjugated (good for reading some kinds of literature) along with lists of sayings, proverbs, similes, prefixes and suffixes, plural endings, verb noun endings etc. etc.
Rather good if you like that sort of thing! Not sure why they were left out of the Geiriadur Mawr.

Y Geiriadur Bach
Pocket version of Y Geiriadur Newydd. Without the interesting bits, and impossible to read without a magnifying glass! I would personally go for a Collins Gem before this one.

Geiriadur Gomer i'r Ifanc
This is another large dictionary for the bookshelf. Officially a children's illustrated dictionary, but I find it really well written and useful. Much more useful than you might think! Really glad Dinas on this forum recommended it recently.

Anyhow, just my opinions! Hope of some use to someone.

Edit- ooh, forgot 

The Welsh Learner's Dictionary by Heini Gruffudd
A simple translation dictionary offering possible words without explanation and a not particularly high word count.
However, this is the only dictionary I have seen which gives a pronunciation guide after each word. It also shows where the accent falls on words (if not on the penultimate).
The pronunciation guide leaves a bit to be desired (in my view), being an approximation of the sound in English spelling and sometimes not being absolutely clear, but it is the only dictionary I have seen which does it for every word, so it can be useful (I've used it a good few times, for what that's worth!)
[The pronunciation given in the dictionary is how words are pronounced in poetry and hymns and such like.]

Comments (1)

Tahl said

at 12:21 pm on Mar 8, 2013

Starting a new page to feature Owain's review of dictionaries. Needs formatting and other work.

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