Irish Language Blog

Vocabulary and Pronunciation Round-up for ‘Capsúlbheathaisnéis Martin Luther King, Jr.’ Posted by on Jan 25, 2016 in Irish Language

(le Róislín)

An Mórshiúl ar Washington, 1963. Cé mhéad duine a bhí ann, i do bharúil? Freagra ag bun an bhlag! (By "US Government Photo" [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons)

An Mórshiúl ar Washington, 1963. Cé mhéad duine a bhí ann, i do bharúil? Freagra ag bun an bhlag! (By “US Government Photo” [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons)

As promised in the first Martin Luther King, Jr., blog (nasc thios), here is some vocabulary review with pronunciation tips.  This should prove useful both for foghlaimeoirí and for múinteoirí who may plan to use the capsúlbheathaisnéis in their ranganna.

an chéad iníon aige, his first daughter

an dara hiníon aige, his second daughter

an chéad mhac aige, his first son

an dara mac aige, his second son

baghcat [with the “bagh-” like “by” or “buy” or IPA /bai/], as in the Montgomery Bus Boycott, further discussed in the previous two blogs

baintreach [BAN-trzhukh], widow; “a bhaintreach” [uh WAN-trzhukh] means “his widow”

bronnadh [BRON-uh OR BRON-oo], was bestowed

bunaíodh [BUN-ee-uh] was established

cearta sibhialta [KyAR-tuh SHIV-ee-ul-tuh], civil rights

cliarscoil [KLEE-ur-SKUH-il], seminary

dealbh [DJAL-uv], sculpture, with the genitive case form “na deilbhe” [nuh DJEL-iv-uh], of the sculpture

dealbhóir [DJAL-uv-oh-irzh], sculptor

diagacht [DJEE-uh-gukht], theology

feallmharaíodh [FyAL-WAR-ee-uh], was assassinated, an interesting compound word, literally meaning “treachery-killed;” the word “feall” triggers the lenition of “maraíodh”

fuil [fwil], blood, shows up in this text as “fola” in “Domhnach na Fola” (Bloody Sunday, lit. Sunday of the Blood)

gluaiseacht [GLOO-ish-ukht], movement

gníomhaí [GNEEV-ee], activist, agent, player/driver/actor

mórga [MOR-uh-guh], majestic

mórshiúl [mor-hyool], march, parade, procession, as discussed in the previous blog (nasc thíos)

príomhfhoirgneamh [PRzhEEV-IRzh-ig-nuv], primary/main building; the prefix “príomh-” triggers the lenition of “foirgneamh”

rugadh [RUG-uh OR RUG-oo, with the “dh” completely silent], was born.  The “rug” isn’t exactly like the English word “rug;” the “u” is more like the “u” of “put” (not “putt”)

seanmóirí [SHAN-um-ohrzh-ee], preacher, sermonizer.  This may look plural, along the lines of  “stiúrthóirí” (directors) and “déantóirí” (manufacturers), but in the case of “seanmóirí,” the “-í” ending is still singular.  “Seanmóir” is the actual “sermon,” or, rather delightfully, it can also mean “rigmarole” and it can also refer to a person, but specifically a “wearisome talker” or “moralizer.”  The plural of “seanmóirí” follows the pattern of “rí” and “rúnaí,” so it becomes “seanmóirithe” (like “ríthe” for “rí” and “rúnaithe” for “rúnaí”).

sinsear [SHIN-shar], ancestor, appearing in this text in the plural, “sinsir,” [SHIN-shirzh].  The word “sinsir” is also lenited in our text, so ”

socheolaíocht [SUKH-OHL-ee-ukht], sociology

tiomnaíodh [TCHUM-nee-uh], was dedicated

tugadh [TUG-uh OR TUG-oo], was given.  The same basic pronunciation pattern as “rugadh.”  So again, the short “u” isn’t like English “tug” but like more like the “u” of “put” (not “putt”).

And just for the sake of thoroughness, even though it wasn’t in the original “capsúlbheathaisnéis,” we have:

neamhfhoréigean [NyOW-OR-ayg-yun, with the “OW” like “cow” or “now;” an alternate pronunciation is “NyAV-OR-ayg-yun], non-violence; the prefix “neamh-” triggers the lenition of “foréigean”

There are a number of Irish words for “blockheaded,” so I think I’ll save a potential translation for “a blockheaded memorial,” as in the article by “W.W.” (nasc thíos) for another blog.

And then, there were a few grammar terms, not related to the civil rights theme per se, but which may benefit from a few pronunciation tips.

clásal coibhneasta [KLAW-sul KwIV-nya-stuh], a relative clause (as in “the man who designed it”)

orduimhreacha [ORD-IV-rzhukh-uh], ordinal numbers, or to say, “the ordinal numbers,” we add “na” (the) and prefix an “h” to get “na horduimhreacha.”  We used these in the “capsúlbheathaisnéis” for phrases like “an chéad iníon aige” and “an chéad mhac aige.”

saorbhriathar [SEER-VRzhEE-uh-hur], autonomous verb, lit. “free-verb”

tuiseal ginideach [TISH-ul GIN-idj-ukh], genitive case, used in Irish to show possession or to describe a noun further.  In the text we saw “cuma na deilbhe” (the appearance of the statue), Domhnach na Fola (Bloody Sunday), and “ainm a mhic” (the name of his son).  Other general examples of “an tuiseal ginideach” include “carúl Nollag” (Christmas carol, from the word “Nollaig,” Christmas (removing the “i” to make the genitive) and “Éirí Amach na Cásca,” which means “The Easter Rising, lit. “the rising “out”/rising of Easter,” switching to “na Cásca” (of Easter) from “An Cháisc” (Easter) for the genitive.  Not that it’s Easter itself that’s rising–“Easter” is used to describe which specific rising is involved.

Bhuel, that’s a good handful or more of vocabulary words to go along with the “capsúlbheathaisnéis.”  I hope you found them useful, or if you teach Irish, I hope you may find it beneficial if you use the Martin Luther King, Jr., blog as a classroom exercise.   SGF – Róislín

Martin Luther King, Jr. — Capsúlbheathaisnéis i nGaeilge (Brief Bio in Irish) Posted on 18. Jan, 2016 by in Irish Language (

Five Civil Rights Terms in Irish (baghcat, cearta sibhialta, gníomhaí, mórshiúl, neamhfhoréigean) Posted on 22. Jan, 2016 by in Irish Language (

And for the “blockheaded memorial” article,

Agus, faoi dheireadh, cé mhéad duine a bhí páirteach sa Mhórshiúl ar Washington i 1963?  Thart fá 250,000!

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