Irish Language Blog

Amhrán Náisiúnta agus Bratach Stáit Aontaithe Mheiriceá agus Brateolaíocht Go Ginearálta: The American National Anthem and Flag, and Vexillology in General Posted by on Jul 2, 2009 in Irish Language

(le Róislín)

Can you match which leasainm (nickname) or frása atá bainteach leis an mbratach nó leis an amhrán náisiúnta (flag-related or national-anthem-related-phrase) goes with which term in English? Freagraí thíos.





The Stars and Stripes


Na Réaltaí agus na Stríoca


Old Glory


An Bhratach Ghealréaltach


The Star-spangled Banner


stríoca leathana


bright stars


tír na gcrógach


Star-spangled Banner


vexillum stellis punctatum (I didn’t say that every phrase in this column was in Irish, did I? 


broad stripes


riabha leathana


the land of the free


réaltaí geala


another way to say “broad stripes”


talamh na saor


the home of the brave


réaltaí gealghlé


bright stars (a slightly different way to say it!)


In case you’re wondering about “An Bhratach Ghealréaltach,” it was translated into Irish in the nineteenth century by Eoghan Ó Gramhnaigh, a priest and Irish language activist who lived from 1863 to 1899.  Among other languages, the anthem has also been translated into Laidin (Latin) and Samóis (Samoan).


So far, I don’t know of any exhibit, virtual or otherwise, for the Irish trídhathach (tricolor) that is quite like the Bratach Mheiriceánach Idirghníomhach (Interactive American Flag) on  permanent display at an Institiúid Smithsonian (Músaem Náisiúnta Stair na Stát Aontaithe).  Either ar líne (online) or sa mhúsaem (in the museum), you can click on parts of the flag to reveal aspects of its history.  To visit it online, the site is a deir an suíomh é féin (i mBéarla, ar ndóigh), zúmáil isteach ar son mionamharc dochreidte (As the site itself says, in English of course, zoom in for incredible detail). D’oscail an taispeántas seo ar an aonú lá is fiche (21ú) de mhí na Samhna, 2008 (this exhibit opened on November 21, 2008).  .


Maidir le brateolaíocht go ginearálta, is í léann scolártha ar bhratacha í.  Ó 1967 bíonn cruinnithe ag an North American Vexillogical Association ( chun ábhair a bhaineanns le bratacha a phlé.  Regarding vexillology in general, it is the scholarly study of flags.  Since 1967, NAVA has held meetings to discuss flag-related issues. 


For about 7 years, Ireland had is own organization, Cumann Vexilleolaíoch na hÉireann, but it appears to have ceased operations around 1992.  You might notice the hybrid adjective, vexilleolaíoch, they used to describe themselves.  “Brateolaíoch” would serve the purpose today.  As for the intriguing word “vexillology,” it comes from Latin “vexillum,” itself derived from “velum” (sails), with “vexilla” being “little sails,” a reasonably apt description of flags. 


Bain sult as an gCeathrú Lá de mhí Iúil!  Enjoy your July 4th


Freagraí: 1b, 2a, 3c, 4f, 5i, 6e, 7h, 8d, 9g, 10j 

Leideanna Fuaimnithe: an bhratach ghealréaltach [un VRAHT-ukh YAL-RAYL-tukh, note: silent “b” and “g”], Aontaithe [AYN-tih-heh], idirghníomhach [ID-ir-NEEV-ukh]


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