Irish Language Blog

Eolaithe Eile (agus Eolaíochtaí Eile) Posted by on Aug 5, 2014 in Irish Language

(le Róislín)

While we’re on a roll with occupations, especially “-ologists,” I thought we could add a few more.  This time, they’ll be a mix and match, just to add a little more … what’s that great compound word again … “dúshlán.”  Understanding “dúshlán” as a compound word (originally “dubh” + “slán,” becoming “shlán” [hlawn] with lenition), helps remind us of its pronunciation: doo-hlawn, with the “s” silent (buíochas le Dia, má smaoineann tú air!).

So, here goes, leis an mbanc focal ar dtús:

Banc Focal: a) oncologist, b) otolaryngologist, c) sociologist, d) urologist, e) vulcanologist (or volcanologist)

Agus seo na focail i nGaeilge, le hainm an staidéir freisin:

1) otalaraingeolaí [OT-uh-LAR-ing-YOHL-ee]; otalaraingeolaíocht

2) bolcáneolaí [BOL-kawn-OHL-ee]; bolcáneolaíocht

3) oinceolaí [INK-OHL-ee]; oinceolaíocht.  I have to admit that “oinc-” is a bit distracting, ar a laghad do dhuine a bhfuil Béarla aige/aici.  I’m just trying to put that chance bilingual near-word-play out of my mind, since oinceolaíocht is such an “ábhar tromchúiseach.”

4) socheolaí [SOKH-OHL-ee]; socheolaíocht.  NB: the word divides between “soch-” and “-eolaí,” so the “ch” is broad (i.e. the sound in German “Buch,” Scottish “loch,” and Welsh “bach“).

5) úireolaí [OO-irzh-OHL-ee]; úireolaíocht

Tá na freagraí thíos agus mh’anam muna bhfuil cuid de na freagraí níos faide ná an blag é féin go dtí an pointe seo!

Go n-éirí leat — Róislín


1b) otalaraingeolaí, otolaryngologist.  This seems to be a much more popular term these days than “otorhinolaryngologist” (otairinealaraingeolaí), another name for basically the same profession.  Sometimes the English term is simply “ENT” (Ear, Nose, and Throat).  Aside from the value of the word itself, it may be of interest to know that two leading Irish literary figures were, you guessed it, otalaraingeolaitheA n-ainmneacha?  Thíos (faoi na freagraí seo)!

2e) bolcáneolaí, volcanologist or vulcanologist–and I wish I could apply a “RéaltAistear” meaning to that latter spelling as well!  A person who studies Vulcans?

From a spelling perspective, it’s important to note the one letter that would distinguish a “bolcáneolaí” from a hypothetical ” *bolgáneolaí,” which, if the word existed, would be the Irish for a specialist in the study of bubbles.  Maybe it does exist, but I don’t see it anywhere online or in print.  There would be a slight different in pronunciation, besides just the “c/g” contrast, if we really had such a word:

bolcáneolaí [BOL-kawn-OHL-ee], a 4-syllable word

*bolgáneolaí [BOL-uh-gawn-OHL-ee], a 5-syllable word, because of the “helping vowel” between the letters “l” and “g, ” which gives us an “uh” sound.

That’s the same extra vowel sound as in Irish “bolg,” “borb,” “dealg,” “gorm,” and “tolg,” plus many other “-lb,” “-lg,” “-lm,” and “-rb,” “-rg,” and “-rm” combinations.  It’s the same phenomenon (“epenthesis”) found in some Hiberno-English, as in “fillum” (for “film”) and “Dub-uh-lin” (at least for the “Rocky Road” thereto) and in some MidAtlantic (USA) English, “ACK-uh-mee” for “Acme” and “OL-uh-nee” for “Olney.”

People have been studying bubbles, apparently for centuries, but I don’t see any existing word for the occupation in Irish and most uses of “bubble-ologist” in English seem to be pretty lighthearted.  Does “bubble-ology” have scientific validity as a term?  I’ve posted a couple of links below to the study of bubbles, including one on “warp bubbles” (*freangbholgáin ?), so there’s must be a term, or at least the need for one, somewhere.   Going to the Latin for “bubble” (bulla) doesn’t look too promising, since it would lead us to “bullology,” a term which seems ripe for the picking, and for which already has a choice entry.  So, for now, probably best to leave well enough alone.

3a) oinceolaí, oncologist; both the Irish and the English are based on the Greek “ónko(s)” (bulk, mass)

4c) socheolaí, sociologist, from “sochaí” (“society” in the sociological sense, if we can allow a tautology, at any rate as opposed to other meanings of “society,” such as  “cumann” and “cuideachta“).

5d) úireolaí, urologist.  Looks like this one is based on the English, which in turn is based on the Greek (natch!), which is “oûron” (urine).  If you’re in suspense as to what the Irish for “urine” is (NB: I had to work on that one for a while, yeah, go ahead, lig “och” asat!), there are two words in Irish (why, I wonder):

fual  (an fual)

mún (an mún)

One reason, i measc cuid mhór eile, for really getting Irish broad and slender consonants straight is so you don’t mix up “mún” (“urine,” or the verb “urinate,” as a command–no comment there), with “múin” (teach, the command form of the verb “múineadh“).

The difference in pronunciation is subtle, but “múin,” with the slender “n,” has a bit of an “in” sound at the end, like “moo-in.”  Not two full syllables, and not like English “mooing,” but just with a smooth flow (och, that was unintentional!) between the two vowels.

As for “fual” vs. “mún,” I don’t know of any physical difference between the two.  Bheadh orm ceist a chur ar úireolaithe a bhfuil Gaeilge acu chun freagra a fháil don cheist sin.  But I do note that “fual” can be used with a variety of pejorative terms for people, such as “ruidín fuail” (miserable little wretch, lit. a little “urine-thing”) or simply “fualán” (wretch, also “chamber-pot” or “urinal”).  “Urinal” can also be “úirinéal,” taking us back to the Greek root, “oûron.”  “Fualán” has a somewhat more off-color meaning as well, which I’ll leave to your imaginations, or more likely, cuardach ar an Idirlíon, but the “leid” is that it’s an occupation.

And a final note re: “fual,” remember there’s no long mark (síneadh fada) here.  There are various words in Irish based on “fuáil,” which means “sew” or “sewing.”  These include: fuálaí, a needlewoman, a sewer; bean fuála, a seamstress (an difear: needlewoman or sewer vs. seamstress?), and “inneall fuála,” a sewing-machine (thank goodness it’s not some form of “fual,” which would make it a “urinating machine” — not that “fual” would normally have a form “fuala,” but you never know with all those obscure variant genitives).

So, yes, the “freagraí” section of this blog was longer than the blog itself.  Á, bhuel, cén dochar?

Na Naisc:

Na hotalaraingeolaithe a bhí ina scríbhneoirí freisin: Sir William Wilde (athair Oscar Wilde) agus Oliver St. John Gogarty.   Tuilleadh eolais: (Otolaryngology and Irish literature: an important medico-literary alliance, by E. C. Cashman)

Naisc do “bubbleology” (“bubble-ology”):

one for children’s party entertainers:

and the one that looks like the most fun to read while still being scientific (do neamh-eolaí, mar mise):  (Why “fun”?  ‘Cause it has “a lán pictiúirí de bhréagáin dhathúla“) and because it’s written by a Chemist, Educator and Science Communicator, David A. Katz, whose title suggest he can explain things to the “gnáthdhuine” better than the average “saineolaí” can.   I measc na mbréagán, a “Swiss Army Bubble Blower” (with multiple “blades”).

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