Welsh/Grammar/Verbs/Present

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The present tense in Welsh can translate as either the 'present indicative' or the 'present progressive'. For example, Dwi'n siarad can translate as I speak', I do speak', I am speaking.

The present tense in Welsh can also be used to describe what is happening in the future:

Dwi'n gweithio yfory.

I'm working tomorrow.

Affirmative[edit]

Present Tense [affirmative] - bod (to be)
English Cymraeg English Cymraeg
I do, I am Rydw i We do, We are Rydyn ni
You do, you are Rwyt ti You do, you are Rydych chi
He does, He is Mae e/o They do, They are Maen nhw
Use the linking particle yn to connect Verb-Nouns. Yn shortens to 'n after a vowel, as in the following examples.

Dwi'n siarad Cymraeg.

I speak Welsh. I do speak Welsh. I am speaking Welsh.


Mae hi'n mynd i'r theatr.

She goes to the theatre. She does go to the theatre. She is going to the theatre.


Maen nhw'n canu.

They sing. They do sing. They are singing.


Remember: If using the particle with a noun or adjective, the noun must undergo a soft-mutation if possible.

Dwi'n athro.

I'm a teacher


Mae hi'n bump oed.

She is 5 years old.

Negative[edit]

Present Tense [negative] - bod (to be)
English Cymraeg English Cymraeg
I don't, I am not Dydw i ddim We don't, We aren't Dydyn ni ddim
You don't, you aren't Dwyt ti ddim You don't, you aren't Dydych chi ddim
He doesn't, He isn't Dyw e ddim, Dydy o ddim They don't, They aren't Dydyn nhw ddim
Use the linking particle yn after the ddim (not).

Dwi ddim yn siarad Cymraeg.

I don't speak Welsh. I am not speaking Welsh.

Dyw/Dydy hi ddim yn mynd i'r theatr.

She doesn't go to the theatre. She isn't going to the theatre.

Dydyn nhw ddim yn canu.

They don't sing.

Dyw hi ddim yn athrawes.

She isn't a teacher.

There are also colloquial ways of expressing the negative in the "I", "you" (ti), we and they forms:

Sai'n -- Sai'n hoffi, I don't like So ti'n -- So ti'n mynd, You're not going Smo ni'n -- Smo ni'n ysmygu, We don't smoke So nhw'n -- So nhw'n siarad, They don't speak

Interrogative[edit]

Present Tense [interrogative] - bod (to be)
English Cymraeg English Cymraeg
Do I? Am I? Ydw i Do we? Are we? Ydyn ni
Do you? Are you? Wyt ti? Do you? Are you? Ydych chi?
Does he? Is he? Ydy e? Do they? Are they? Ydyn nhw?
Present Tense Responses bod - to be
English Cymraeg English Cymraeg
Yes: I do, I am Ydw / Nac ydw Yes: We do, We are Ydyn / Nac ydyn
Yes: You do, you are Wyt / Nac wyt Yes: You do, you are Ydych / Nac ydych
Yes: He does, He is Ydy / Nac ydy Yes: They do, They are Ydyn / Nac ydyn
Remember: Welsh does not use 'yes' or 'no' responses. Instead, you answer with a more direct 'I do' or 'He is' type response.

A: Wyt ti'n mynd i'r parc?
B: Ydw. Dwi'n mynd i'r parc.

A: Are you going to the park?
B: I am (yes). I'm going to the park.


A: Ydy hi'n hoffi ffilmiau?
B: Ydy. Mae hi'n hoffi ffilmiau.

A: Does she like films?
B: She does (yes). She likes films.


A: Ydy Brad yn chwarae heddiw?
B: Nac ydy. Dydy Brad ddim yn chwarae heddiw.

A: Is Brad playing today?
B: He isn't. Brad isn't playing today.

Mae and Oes[edit]

The third-person form mae of bod (to be) can be translated as 'there is'.
The interrogative form of mae is Oes? 'Is there?'
Oes also serves as a 'yes' response. Yes, there is. The no response is Nac oes.
The negative form is Does dim 'There isn't'.


Oes bwyd yn y tŷ?

Is there food yn the house?

Oes. Mae llawer o fwyd yma.

Yes (There is). There is a lot of food here.

Oes rhaglen dda ar y teledu heno?

Is there a good programme on the television tonight?

Nag oes. Does dim unrhywbeth da.

No (There isn't). There isn't anything good.
The mae/oes pattern is used in a number of expressions in Welsh, for example: possession. The English sentence, 'I have a car' must be expressed as 'There is a car with me' in Welsh. Here are a few of the uses of mae and oes:


Possession Oes car gyda chi?

Do you have a car?
(lit. 'Is there a car with you?')

Oes. Mae car gyda fi.

Yes. I have a car.
(lit. 'There is a car with me.')

Conditions Mae ofn arna i.

I'm afraid.
(lit. There is fear on me.)

Mae hiraeth arna i.

I'm homesick.
(lit. There is homesickness on me.)