Irish Language Blog

Agus An tAthbharr? (An Mhaidin Tar Éis Lá Fhéile Pádraig) Posted by on Mar 20, 2011 in Irish Language

(le Róislín)

So, whether it was pionta Guinness or a glincín or an iar-dheoch, there might be some torthaí or iarmhairtí, especially if you had deoch amháin de bharraíocht.  So you might want to know the Irish for “hangover” – it’s “póit.”

If you’re lucky, it might simply be a mild tinneas cinn.

On the other hand, a full-blown póit could be “ort” (on you), and in that case, there are various possible symptoms, mar shampla:

díhiodráitiúchán agus tart

meadhrán (veirtige)

urlacan (cur amach) agus samhnas

laige, tuirse, drogall éirithe

pian sna matáin nó sa bholg

cantal agus imní

cur allais

A few more phrases and sentences related to hangovers:

Tá póit orm.

Tá drochphóit orm.

“An bhfuil póit ort, a chréatúir?, a deir do chomhphótaire, “Bhuel, tá a fhios agat go ndeirtear ‘Leigheas na póite a hól arís.’  Sláinte!”

“Póit” is a feminine noun, so to say a “big hangover,” it would be “póit mhór.”  I’ve already seen this phrase circulating the Internet as if “póit” were a masculine noun, i.e. using “mór” instead of “mhór,” so I can only recommend, “caveat pōtoragus déan staidéar ar an ngramadach, if you want to describe your hangover accurately.

I suppose you could also have a “póitín” (a little hangover).  You’d just want to make sure it’s not confused with “an stuif é féin.”  The Irish for “moonshine” (poteen) is usually spelled with a short “o,” (poitín), but there is a variant where it’s spelled “póitín,” with a long “o.”  Póitín mar gheall ar phóitín?  ar phoitín?  Póitín póitín?  Póitín poitín?  A moonshine hangover (as opposed to one from beoir or from fuisce dlisteanach?   Or moonshine guaranteed to give you a hangover?  Cé chomh hathluaiteach is atá sé sin?  And short “o” or long “o,” as a matter of dialect?

Unlike the English word “hangover,” the Irish “póit” can also mean “drunkenness” in general.  However there are more possible words for “drunkenness,” so I’ll reserve further commentary on that for blag éigin eile.

I thought I might end up writing about Jack London’s infamous “luchóga gorma agus eilifintí bándearga” in this blog, but upon reconsideration, that should wait for another blog, one on an t-ólachán é féin, not its aftermath.  Not that I would swear that the blue mice and pink elephants are only seen during the babhta óil itself, but that does seem to be the implication.  Except, of course, in “Beasts of Bourbon,” that delightful short story, from the collection, Tales from Gavagan’s Bar by Fletcher Pratt and L. Sprague de Camp.  But then, the creatures in that story aren’t exactly mice or elephants, of any color, although they could be considered torthaí ólacháin, up to a point.  Hitch is, though, is iad na fíor-rudaí iad.  On that cliffhanger, sgf go dtí an chéad uair eile — Róislín

Gluais: allais, of sweat; athbharr, aftermath; cantal, irritability; de bharraíocht, too many; droch-, bad; drogall, reluctance; glincín (fuisce), shot; iar-dheoch, chaser; imní, anxiety; leigheas, cure; matán, muscle; meadhrán, dizziness, vertigo; pótaire, tippler; samhnas, nausea; tart, thirst; tuirse, tiredness, fatigue; urlacan, vomiting

Nóta faoin bhfocal “athbharr”: this is based on the prefix “ath-“ (re-, second) and the noun “barr” (crop), reflecting the origin of the word in English (“after-mowing”), with the “math” part related to Old English “maeth” and Middle English “mowen.”  So, nothing matamaiticiúil going on here at all.

Nóta faoi Bheár an Gháibhtheachánaigh, oh, right, the title of the book and the name of the pub are in English, “Gavagan’s Bar.”  Just wanted to point out that there an Irish connection here as well, even though the setting is New York City and geographic references of the stories range from the Bahamas to Budapest.  The name “Gavagan” could be from “Ó Gáibhtheacháin” (aka Ó Gacháin), or “Mac Eochagáin,” joining Geoghegan, Gehegan, Gavaghan, Gaffigan, and Gaughan in a tangled web of surnames and anglicizations.

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