IRISH LANGUAGE Q&A

Q&A le Siobhán agus Aisling – Thursday August 20th 2020

Shownotes

August’s Live Q&A with Aisling and Siobhán took place in August 2020. Watch it above!

  • Aisling’s favourite word – somóg 
  • Siobhán’s favourite word – streille: foolish grin 
  • It’s thought that the language evolved from Celtic, but there is no written proof of the Celtic language. It is an Indo-European language which means it links to other European languages and has evolved over time with influence from Latin and French, Spanish and German. 
  • Changes came about from colonisation (file, druids, tiarnaí), Penal Laws and globalisation, 
  • Some scholars say Irish has been in Ireland since 300 BC. Latin font succeeded Ogham, a system of lines etched vertically into rock, in the 5th century due to Christian missionaries. There has been a strong Latin and also Scandinavian influence on Irish, from early communication with Roman Britain to Church influence, the spread of Latin due to it being a scholarly language
  • Irish through history:
    • Sean-Ghaeilge/Old Irish 6th-9th c. (Latin influence)
    • Meán-Ghaeilge/Middle Irish 9th-12th c. (Viking influence)
    • Nua-Ghaeilge Chlasaiceach/Early Modern Irish and literary version called Classical Irish 12th-17th c. (Norman influence)
    • Nua-Ghaeilge Dhéanach/Modern Irish 17th c. – Today (Flight of the Earls/technology/globalisation) 
  • Éist must take the preposition le, can’t say le an, must say leis an. Doesn’t necessarily mean ‘to’ just the preposition needed after éist.
  • Use in a sentence when the pronoun is the subject (who or what performs the action).
    • Rinne sé seo dochar = This did harm. (This did the action)
  • Use é when the pronoun is the object (a pronoun that is affected by the action). 
    • Rinne Seán é seo = Seán did this. (This had the action done to it) 
  • Seo is used following a noun 
    • An cóta seo = this coat. 
  • Nowadays 3 main dialects. Most speakers can understand all dialects, sometimes a certain word may be used in one dialect and not in the other. E.g feicim vs cím = I see
  • It is said that at one point, the 3 dialects were so diverse that they could all have been classified as separate languages! At the beginning of the Free State when children started to learn Irish in school, the Caighdeán was brought about to make Irish a bit more uniform. For that reason, most people can understand each other even though they may have different dialects.
  • Fillers
    • Bhuel (well, like)
    • ach am (but am)
    • ná habair! (Not again! Don’t tell me!)
    • mar sin (so, basically), mo dhuine (what’s his face, yer man)
    • í siúd (what’s her face, yer one)
    • rud/ruidín (yoke, thingamajig)
    • tuigim (right, yeah)
    • ceart go leor, tá go maith, maith go leor (right, okay, grand)
    • Tá sin togha (that’s grand),
    • An dtuigeann tú leat me? (do you know what I mean?)
    • Á, i ndáiríre? (ah, really?)
    • Abair (specifically in Munster but very common) (let’s say)
    • Ta fhios agat (y’know)
    • cinéal (specifically in Conemara) (kinda)
  • Actually = chun an fhírinne a rá, déanta na fírinne, dáiríre píre / mar a tharlaíonn sé 
  • Wow / gosh = muis, muise, m’anam, A Mhaighdean!, A Thiarcais! (Lordy!)

Try out our free Cúrsaí Taster

P.S. What did you learn from this Q&A? Leave a comment below!

Emark on your Irish language journey!

We want to help you achieve Gaeilge Gach Lá – Irish Every Day. Since 2010, we’ve been helping thousands of people learn, practice and speak the Irish language. Take your Irish language journey at your own pace, and practice with others and our fluent staff. Aistear (“journey”) is our self-paced language learning platform.

Or become a member now to access our self-paced courses and more:
Membership Plans

Don't miss out on our next Live Q&A

Get our newsletter for free Irish language learning content every week. You’ll have a chance to submit a question to the next live Q&A, and get the latest resources for Irish language learners.

Watch Previous Irish language Q&As on-demand

The fluent staff at Bitesize Irish are passionate in helping your to learn, practice and speak Gaeilge. Watch more previous live Q&As.

your greatest challenges learning irish

Niall and Ben answered questions about how to tackle your greatest challenges in learning to speak the Irish language. They gave tips on spelling and pronunciation, where to find other learners to practice Irish conversation with, how to structure your practice and how to maintain a sense of momentum as you progress along your learning

Read More »

diving into dialects

Emma & Ben answered questions about the three major dialects of Irish – Connacht, Munster and Ulster. They spoke about pronunciation, the main differences between the dialects, and some of the things that they have in common. They also walked us through through the free-to-download Bitesize Irish Dialects cheat-sheet. Deborah asked: In addition to differences

Read More »

Ask the author With special guest Gary Bannister

This month Ben hosted an insightful ‘ask me anything!’ session with Irish language author and academic Garry Bannister. They discussed the links between the Irish language and Russian, the Irish language roots of Hiberno-English, proverbs in Irish (seanfhocail) and approaches to Irish language education. The elusive irish-russian dictionary Dr. Bannister’s background told us how he

Read More »

How To Ask Questions in irish

Niall & Ben gave pointers on how to form your questions in Irish confidently and effectively. Niall described the new ‘Asking Questions In Irish’ course module on the Bitesize learning platform, and walked us through the free to download cheat-sheet that he put together to accompany the launch! Janine asked if there Is a standard format to building

Read More »

Back To School

This month Ben and Emma discussed your questions on balancing Irish learning with other responsibilities as we settle back into our daily routine after the summer break. They’ll had tips on resources for busy people and suggestions for speaking Irish with kids everyday. Gaeilge gach lá! Bitesize member Lynn asked ‘What do you recommend on

Read More »

Visiting Ireland

Eoin and Ben discussed where to use your Irish when visiting Ireland. They spoke about the expectations that you may have as a visitor, and how to experience the native culture during your stay. Barra is an Irish emigrant who is returning to Galway City from living abroad for the past 6 years. he asked

Read More »

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

5 thoughts on “Q&A le Siobhán agus Aisling – Thursday August 20th 2020”

  1. Dear Siobhan and Aisling, thank you very much for your suggestions as to documentaries one may watch on youtube, very helpful indeed! Thank you for the good will and the effort you put into helping others to learn your beautiful language. This spirit of service and goodwill that you have is very inspiring!

      1. Thank you, I will! I did not get to find the “Cuimhní ón mBlascaod” documentary that you recommended, but there is one on Youtube called “Inis Airc: Bás Oileáin” (with English subtitles as well) – probably the story of another island similar to that. It left a deep impression of me.

        Topic of books to read is a fascinating one, thank you for bringing it up. The books in Irish are now so many, one would need advice! A few years back, I enjoyed reading “Ón tSeanam Anall”. It is a collection of old legengs and stories put down on paper, but that were actually told by one amazing person called Micí Bán Ó Beirn about a hundred years ago. Part of the gratification was to recognize common themes and bits and pieces from the Russian folk tales I loved reading as a child.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

5 thoughts on “Q&A le Siobhán agus Aisling – Thursday August 20th 2020”

  1. Dear Siobhan and Aisling, thank you very much for your suggestions as to documentaries one may watch on youtube, very helpful indeed! Thank you for the good will and the effort you put into helping others to learn your beautiful language. This spirit of service and goodwill that you have is very inspiring!

      1. Thank you, I will! I did not get to find the “Cuimhní ón mBlascaod” documentary that you recommended, but there is one on Youtube called “Inis Airc: Bás Oileáin” (with English subtitles as well) – probably the story of another island similar to that. It left a deep impression of me.

        Topic of books to read is a fascinating one, thank you for bringing it up. The books in Irish are now so many, one would need advice! A few years back, I enjoyed reading “Ón tSeanam Anall”. It is a collection of old legengs and stories put down on paper, but that were actually told by one amazing person called Micí Bán Ó Beirn about a hundred years ago. Part of the gratification was to recognize common themes and bits and pieces from the Russian folk tales I loved reading as a child.