Irish Language Blog

Archive for August, 2015

How to Pronounce ‘Leathbheart,’ ‘i mbeart,” and Other Consonant Clusters in Irish  Posted by on Aug 31, 2015

(le Róislín) In today’s blog we’ll look at how to pronounce words  and phrases like “leathbheart” and “i mbeart.”  “Leathbheart” is a classic example of “lenition,” or the “softening” (séimhiú) of the sounds of certain Irish consonants.  And the phrase “i mbeart” is a classic example of “eclipsis” (urú), which is covering over the sound…

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Irish Bits, Bytes and Lenition (Giotáin, Bearta, agus Séimhiú) Posted by on Aug 28, 2015

(le Róislín) In several recent blogs, we’ve looked at the word “beart” in its many meanings.  Remember the four different basic meanings (freagraí thíos) as they apply to phrases such as: a) Oifig na mBeart b) bléinbheart c) i mbearta crua d) beart curtha in áirithe And for a total semantic workout, try: e) i mbeart. This phrase could…

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Speaking of ‘Na Cóid Phoist,’ How about ‘Letters’ and ‘Parcels’ in Irish Posted by on Aug 25, 2015

(le Róislín) This summer saw the launch of the new Irish postal code system, kerfluffle and all, which we discussed in a previous blog. So let’s get postal now with some other mail-related vocabulary. a) litir–this word is quite clearly related to “letter,” which is exactly what it means. It can be “letter” as in…

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From ‘fleasc’ to ‘fleiscín’ in Irish, or, What does a ‘wreath’ have to do with a ‘hyphen’ Posted by on Aug 20, 2015

(le Róislín) In the last blog, I made quite a point of saying that certain compound words include a ‘fleiscín‘ in Irish and others do not, all depending on the spelling of the words that happen to be joined together in a ‘comhfhocal.’ What pattern do you see in these examples, all of which are…

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Leathanaigh Bhána, Órga, Facebook, agus Cineálacha Eile Posted by on Aug 17, 2015

(le Róislín) Remember the abbreviations “lch.” and “lgh.“?  How would you say them out loud if you encountered them in a page of Irish text?   We saw them in a blog originally posted here on April 20, 2015 (nasc thíos) and recently reposted ( No great mysteries here. The abbreviation “lch.”  stands for “leathanach” ([LyA-huh-nukh]…

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‘Bléinbheart’ go ‘Zeitibheart’  — Cineálacha Beart agus Beartanna i nGaeilge Posted by on Aug 14, 2015

(le Róislín) When I first thought of this blog topic, I thought I’d just do types of clothing, like “bléinbheart” and “coisbheart.”  But then I figured we might as well do “an banana iomlán.”  If we’re in for a “pingin,” we may as well be in for a “punt.”  Or actually, as the more traditional…

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From ‘Buatais’ to ‘Bútáil’ — And Why Do We Say ‘ReBOOTing’ Anyway?  Posted by on Aug 10, 2015

(le Róislín) Bhuel, I guess the word “bootstrap” bridges the gap between a “boot” (buatais) as a physical item, and “booting” (bútáil), as in “starting a computer.” So what is the Irish for “bootstrap”?  Ironically, the most common word for the original idea of a physical bootstrap takes us back to “bróg” not “buatais.”   As…

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