Irish/Compound Prepositions

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Compound Prepositions[edit | edit source]

ar aghaidh, os coinne, os comhair
ar chúl, taobh thiar de
ar feadh, i gcaitheamh, i rith, in imeacht, le linn
ar fud
looking for
ar lorg
like, in the manner of
ar nós
for the sake of
ar son, thar ceann, de cheann
about to
ar tí
as a result of, because of
de bharr, dá bhrí, de thairbhe
according to
de réir
on account of
de thairbhe
for the purpose of
faoi choinne, le haghaidh, i gcomhair
to meet
faoi dhéin
to the end of, to the top of
go ceann
in charge of, minding
i bhfeighil, i gcionn
along with
i dteannta
i gcoinne, in aghaidh, in éadan
in the middle of
i lár
present at, in the presence of
i láthair
i measc
i ndiaidh, tar éis
in place of
in áit
along with
le cois, i dteannta, in éineacht le
le hais, in aice (le), taobh le
os cionn
in front of
os coinne, os comhair
in aice (le)
dá bhrí sin
under the care of
faoi chúram
at the head of
ar ceann
at the end of
i gceann, faoi cheann
in reference to
um cheann (very rare)


  • A compound preposition usually governs a genitive. But if it ends in a simple preposition, then not: in éineacht le behaves essentially as the simple preposition le.
  • "ar" doesn't lenite a naked noun (i.e. a noun not preceded by an article) when it's part of a compound preposition or when it signifies an abstract state rather than a concrete position, or when it signifies a relative position. Cf. ar muin capaill "on horseback", but ar mhuin an chapaill áirithe seo "on the back of this particular horse". Note, though, the phrase ar fheabhas "excellent", which violates this rule (originally ar a fheabhas).

Essentially the same rule applies to thar, cf. the expressions thar barr "excellent", thar fóir "beyond (reasonable) limits, beyond measure", thar cailc "beyond the chalked mark, overstepping the limit"