Caibidil a Cúig: Prepositions (Réamhfhocail)

le = with

In le the old prepositions le and re have fallen together. (in Scottish Gaelic they are still seperate)
In Munster mostly (with a long e)


le requires the dative.

Initial Mutations:


combination with article:

combination with personal pronoun and possessive pronoun:

- personal pron. contrast form translation possessive pron. translation
I liom liomsa with me le mo (lem) with my
you leat leatsa with you le do (led) with your
he leis leis-sean with him lena with his
she léi léise with her lena with her
we linn linne with us lenár with our
you(pl.) libh libhse with you le bhur with your
they leo leosan with them lena with their

The 3 "lena" differ according to if lenition ("with his "), eclipsis ("with her " plural), or nothing follows ("with her " singular).
lem, led appear in Munster.

combination with the indirect relative pronoun a and the indirect relative form of the copula:

tense rel. part.
le + a/ar
copular form
le + ar
copular form
pre vowel 
present lena lenar lenarb with him/her
preterite lenar lenar lenarbh with him/her

After a combination with the relative pronoun lena eclipsis follows, after lenar, lenition
These forms are only used if the indirect relative clause begins with a preposition (as in German : die Frau, mit der ich gehe = an bhean lena dtéim) More often, the preposition is at the end (an bhean a dtéim léi)


  1. accompaniment: with le Máirtín = with Martin
  2. aid: with, via : le spáid = with the spade , fuair sé bás leis an ocras = he died from the hunger
  3. purpose/requirement: (with the verbal noun): (in order) to : le balla a phéinteáil = in order to paint the wall, neart le n-ól = to drink a lot, scéal le hinsint = to tell a story
    here, the n-prefix precedes a vowel (otherwise no eclipsis)
  4. adj + le + verbal noun : maith le hithe = good to eat, blasta le hól = tasty to drink, crua le cogaint = hard to chew
  5. force of motion : with: le gaoth = with the wind,  le sruth = with the flow
  6. point in time : at the start of the ...: leis an lá = by daybreak, leis an mí = at the start of the month
  7. cause phys./psych. state: leis an tuirse = from exhaustion; le hól = through drinking;  le greann = out of fun; le gleo = due to the noise
  8. behaviour to others : e.g. deas le... = nice to..., fearg (ar...) le... = angry at...
  9. location: close to : leis an mballa = against the wall, le tine = close to the fire,  cuir le = lay upon
  10. motion: close to....along: éirigh le balla = to climb a wall, tit le haill = to fall off a cliff
  11. in the direction   to, towards : luí le grian = lie in the sun, tabhair do chúl leo = turn your back to/on them, tá súil agam le... = I hope...(to hope for something...)
  12. for/against: paidir le = pray for, cúis le = cause of, fianaise le = proof of, cuir gadhar le = to sick a dog on someone
  13. duration: since: le seachtain = since/for a week, le fada = since a while
  14. subjective assessment: "finden": copula + adjective + le + subject: is maith le = like , ba mhaith le = want, would like , is hionadh le = to wonder , is breá le = love ("to find wonderful "), is fuath le = hate, is fearr le = prefer, is cuma le...(faoi...) = to not care about (something).
    e.g.: is fada liom é = I find it to be long, is dóigh liom go ...= I think that...
  15. practice: is minic liom = I do it often
  16. property own / have : copula + le + subject: Is le Cáit an teach = the house belongs to Cait ; an teach leis = his house similarly also:
  17. author: e.g. of books : (by... ) e.g.: "Faust" le Goethe but also: triúr clainne leis = 3 children by him (conceived)
  18. with directional adverbs : with: anuas leat! = down you go , but also with adverbs of motion: d'imigh sí léi = she left
  19. can: is féidir le....,or : tig le... + VN
  20. tá subj. le...(ar...).agree with (on) but tá le subj.: succeed in/with
  21. comparison: as ... as : chomh + Adj. + le: chomh mór leat = as big as you
    similar also (with chomh):
  22. with verbs (reflexive on the subject) to go on : abair leat = keep talking, d'oibrigh mé liom = I kept working
  23. with certain verbs: fan le = wait for, (eas)aontigh le = (not)agree with, buail le = meet someone, ag cuidiu le = help someone, déir le = to say about
  24. communication: with: labhair le = speak with but also gáir le = smile at someone, feadáil le = whistle at, éist le = listen to
  25. is leat + VN = it's your turn to ...
  26. take/bringtá ... le: tá sé liom = I'll take/bring it with me
  27. type of motion : bhí súil géar leis = he had a fast pace
  28. tendency, trend: tá fána leis = it's falling,  tá casadh chun an chladaigh leis = it curves to the coast
  29. profession/activity (working with): dochtuir le leigheas = M.D., doctor of medicine, obair le miotal = metal work, to work with metal
  30. to bring with it : tá costas leis = that would bring costs with it, tá trioblóid leis = that brings trouble
  31. to begin /end with
  32. maidir le = regarding, with respect to, like
  33. in aice le = next to (spatial)
  34. in éineacht le = beside (together with)
  35. leis adverbial use: also (instead of freisin, fosta) predom. in Munster): Bhí mé ann, leis = I was there too.

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