Irish Language Blog

Lá an Bastille (July 14th) Posted by on Jul 13, 2010 in Uncategorized

We’ve just discussed the Irish for “Bastille Day” and how the word “Bastille” stays exactly the same as it is in French.  How about a few questions in Irish inspired by the history and background of this formidable building. 

1.. Cad é an frása Gaeilge caighdeánach ar “the storming of the Bastille” (la prise de la Bastille):

a)   stoirm an Bastille                       b) stoirmeáil an Bastille

c)   forghabháil an Bastille  d) ionsaí an Bastille

2.. Ciallaíonn “bastida” “baile daingnithe” sa teanga seo:

a)   Fraincis                                    b) Ocsatáinis               

c)   Laidin                                       d)  Corsaicis                            

 3..   Tá an focal “bastida” bunaithe ar an mbriathar “bastir.” Cad a chiallaíonn “bastir”? 

      a)  bás a fháil i dtír éigin thar sáile   

      b)  adhradh a dhéanamh do chatbhandia na nÉigipteach, Bast

      c)  do dhóthain de phasta a ithe

      d)  tógáil (foirgnimh, srl.)

4.. Cé acu focal Gaeilge nach mbaineann le coirpeacht agus pionós?

a)    carcair                                     b. smachtlann

c).  príosún                                    d) gaol

Nótaí: adhradh, to worship; briathar, verb; caighdeánach, standard (adj); coirpeacht, crime; daingnithe, fortified; dóthain, sufficiency; foirgneamh, a building; pionós, punishment

Freagraí: 1. c (from for+gabháil).  “Stoirm” and “stoirmeáil” are just scéalta thairis, which is an Irish phrase meaning “red herrings,” but not literally.  An actual red herring would be “scadán toitleasaithe” (lit. smoke-cured herring), unless you really wanted to describe it as “red,” (à la Clifford, the big red dog, whom I’d describe as “dearg,” not “rua,” the latter being the usual term for red hair or fur, as found in nature).  In theory, one could say “scadán dearg,” more for the figurative meaning than for the food, and some people do use the term that way.  For me, however, it conjures up a charming animated cartoon whose main character is a giant herring, chomh dearg le Clifford.


3..d.  More “scéalta thairis,” I’m afraid, even more “áiféiseach” than above!

4.. d) “gaol” in Irish means “relationship,” “kinship,” “kin,” etc.  It has nothing to do with jail or gaol (Reading, Tralee, or otherwise).  Of course someone’s relatives could have a connection with incarceration, particularly with the controversial new testing of aigéad dí-ocsairibeanúicléasach an teaghlaigh

More holidays “sa chiú”!  Please stay tuned!

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  1. Moira:

    Go raibh maith agat.
    Tá an trácht a scríobh tú an suimiúil ar fad.

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