Lesson #2 More about Telling Time

If you are complete with Lesson 1, you are ready to fine-tune your ability to tell time.  You know your numbers from 1 to 12 and now it would be helpful to know how to say after the hour or before the next hour.  It would also be helpful to know a few other terms and numbers.

When the minute hand is after the hour down to 30 minutes / half-past we use the phrase ‘tar éis’ pronounced “tar aysh” in Connacht and Munster dialects.  In Ulster, they use the phrase ‘i ndiaidh’ to mean ‘after’ which is roughly pronounced “in-yay”.  Let’s look at both of these if the times is quarter past the hour.  The word “Ceathrú” means quarter and is used often in telling time.  Ceathrú is roughly pronounced “Kyahroo”.

Here are the two ways that we can say quarter after two o’clock.

Tá sé ceathrú tar éis a dó a chlog.  Tá sé ceathrú i ndiaidh a dó a chlog.

If we replace ‘ceathrú’ with ‘leathuair’ (half-hour) roughly pronounced “lyah-or” we have:

Tá sé leathuair tar éis a dó a chlog.  Tá sé leathuair i ndiaidh a dó a chlog.

In order to say that it is quarter until the hour, we have two ways.  In Connacht and Munster we use the phrase ‘chun’ roughly pronounced “hun” and in Ulster we use the phrase ‘go dtí’ roughly pronounced “guh dJee”.  So what does quarter to three o’clock look like?

Tá sé ceathrú chun a trí.  Tá sé ceathrú go dtí a trí.

Whether you add “a chlog” on the end is really up to you!  Perhaps you would like to say 10 after or 20 after or 10 until or 20 until.  You need to replace ‘ceathrú’ with either ‘deich’ (10) roughly pronounced “dJeh” or ‘fiche’ (20) roughly pronounced “FIH-heh”.

Tá sé deich tar éis a trí.  Tá sé deich i ndiaidh a trí.

Tá sé fiche tar éis a trí a chlog.  Tá sé fiche i ndiaidh a trí a chlog.

(Remember – “a chlog” is optional.)

Ádh mór ort! (Good luck!)