Archive for the ‘Irish Gaelic (gle)’ Category

Education and skills department cuts Irish language services

1 May 2013

Citing financial restrictions and a lack of personnel skilled in Irish, the Department of Education and Skills in Ireland has greatly curtailed the services it provides in Irish.

Comhdháil Náisiúnta na Gaeilge, the central steering committee for the Irish-speaking community, will be discussing this issue with the Department and others.

Read more at “Department of Education and Skills revokes Irish language services.”

Irish classes start this week in London

1 May 2013

The London Irish Centre is offering three courses that start over the next week or so, a beginner’s course, an improver’s course and a comfortable speaker’s course. The courses are eight weeks long and cost 80 pounds.

See “Summer Irish Language Classes” for more details.

Irish Language Day

26 April 2013

On 18 May, the Department of Culture and Media will hold its sixth annual Irish Language Day at Marylhurst University.

Bob Burke, Marylhurst Irish instructor and vice-president of the North American Association for Celtic Language Teachers, will be at the language celebration. Read his blog entry on Irish at “Irish as an endangered language,” where he talks about a family receiving a stipend to raise their children in Irish and cites census statistics about Irish (gle) use in Ireland.

BBC Quiz!

30 May 2012

The online BBC News Magazine posted a quiz today on less-spoken languages.

The quiz features some tough questions on languages such as: Aka or Hruso (hru), Aramaic (family) and Romansh (roh), as well as four UK languages: Breton (bre), Cornish (cor), Irish (gle) and Manx (glv).

Readers of this blog will probably score far higher than most. With two lucky guesses (whoops!), I scored five out of seven. What’s your score? Post below!

Video making the case to revitalize

13 April 2011

Last autumn, the BBC had an article titled “Are dying languages worth saving?” that includes a video.

The article provides pros and cons for revitalization, but the video is on the side of revitalization. Speaking in seven languages, people make the case with English subtitles to assist those people who are not septaglots (speaking seven languages).

The languages used are:

Linguicide and Revitalization

10 April 2011

In “Linguicide: Trends and Revitalization,” op-ed writer Sandeepan Borthakur discusses the decline and rejuvenation of languages.

In the lead of the article, the dormancy of Bo or Aka-Bo (akm) is mentioned. Bo became silent in January 2010 with the passing of the last speaker. See also Andamanese languages for more information on this rich area of human culture.

UNESCO’s Atlas of the World’s Languages in Danger is cited as listing 2500 languages in five categories of endangerment.

At the end of the article, the author notes that while Assamese (asm) is spoken by 13 million people today, the percentage of people speaking it of India’s population as a whole has steadily declined over the past four decades.

Other endangered languages mentioned in the article are: Cornish (cor), Irish (gle), and Manchu (mnc), which has an interesting alphabet. The two other projects mentioned are the Rosetta Project and the Endangered Language Fund.

Awards for US Citizens to Study Irish in Gaeltacht, Conference

24 March 2011

According to ‘US citizens can win grants to study the Irish language in Ireland” on the Irish Central, the Fulbright Commission in Ireland is offering awards of up to 5000 euro to Americans to study Irish Gaelic (gle) in Ireland.

The awards are to be used for travel and expenses to study Irish in the Gaeltacht or Irish-speaking areas of Ireland. To apply, candidates must be US citizens and have completed at least one semester of Irish study.

The deadline to apply is April 29. To learn more about the awards and apply, see “Awards at a Glance.”

The Irish Central article also noted the announcement of Inter-changes: Conference on Learning and Teaching the Irish Language, to be held on May 10 at the Notre Dame Conference Center in Indiana, US. The conference is being organized by the Department of Irish Language & Literature, the Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies and the Fulbright Commission in Ireland.

Irish Gaelic Makes Inroads and Outroads

19 April 2009

Gaeilge or Irish is the first national language of the Republic of Ireland, a status enshrined in the constitution. It is taught as a second language as a compulsory subject in government-funded schools and appears to be making a strong comeback as evidenced by its use in newspapers and broadcasts. While many speakers are proud of their language, there are also many naysayers more concerned about gainful employment where English skills are what count.

In 2006, the Irish government moved forward with a plan to make the nation completely bilingual over a two-decade period, an amazing development in the field of endangered languages.

In the United States, a major destination in the Irish diaspora, people of Irish descent make up twelve percent of the population and Irish pride is common, particularly on St. Patrick’s Day.

Gaeilge classes are offered at many universities in the US, and now there is a weekly hour-long broadcast (archives) offered in New York on WFUV that provides language lessons along with cultural and historical information.

Even social-networking site Facebook is getting into the Gaeilge act. Having translated more than 8000 terms in order to provide a full language experience for users, they have more than twice that to go as of January. Equivalents for such expressions as pizza toppings and (user) profile all must be decided on, and the Facebook approach is to use consensus to select terms, thereby increasing the scope of the Gaeilge vocabulary.

The Internet offers a wealth of resources to learn Gaelige. Here is a selection:

This article was inspired by the AP article “Radio show leads the way for Gaelic comeback.”

The Fifth Celtic Language

11 June 2007

According to Wikipedia, Charles Leland referred to the language Shelta (sth) as the fifth Celtic language (family), though with at least Irish Gaelic (gle), Scottish Gaelic (gla), Manx (glv); Breton (bre), Cornish (cor) and Welsh (cym), there are certainly more than five.

The speakers of Shelta are known as Travellers, a people also commonly known by the derogatory term “Tinker” because of the tin work they are known for.

Richard Waters has a Website dedicated to the Travellers in the US, called Travellers’ Rest. This site includes English > US Shelta and US Shelta > English dictionaries as well as links, music, essays and notes about some of the controversies surrounding the Travellers.

Although related to Gaeilge, the syntax is largely based on English.

Parts of R. A. Stewart Macalister’s 1937 The Secret Languages of Ireland can be found at the Internet Archive Wayback Machine and Kobo Books, the vocabulary starting on page 174. Some of the other parts can be found on those sites as well.

Two other nomadic groups are the Romani (or Roma) and Sanka.