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Monday, May 21, 2018

#52ancestors Post Twenty: Another Language

My father-in-law flew the Irish flag and I remember a Irish phrase on a bumper sticker on his car. 

The writing prompt for #52ancestors last week is Another Language. I have not had to deal other languages when researching as I have yet to find ancestors arriving in the US who didn't already speak English. 

Most of my families were probably in America prior to the American Revolution. Most of my husband's family members immigrated to the US from Ireland between the late 1800s and 1930. 

Although the Irish family members spoke English when arriving in the US, it is unknown as to how many also spoke Gaelic. I will never be able to answer this question, but thought I would learn a little about this Irish language. 

The first thing I learned is when we talk about the language of Ireland while speaking English, it should be referred to as Irish. When speaking in Irish, the language is referred to using the term Gaeilge.

Irish Gaeilge/Gaelic, Scottish Gaeilge/Gaelic, and Manx (Gaeilge/Gaelic), from the Isle of Man are all Goidelic languages. These Goidelic languages are one of two groups of Celtic languages, originated in Britain and Ireland, that still exist in modern times. 

There are five vowels and thirteen consonants in the Irish language and word order in sentences is very different from English. While we might say A boy saw a dog yesterday, in Irish it would be Saw the boy a dog yesterday.  

Irish is not anything like English or other languages you might learn at school. Click here to listen to a weather forecaster speak fluent Irish. 

If you want to know more about the families I research, click here to like my Facebook page where you will see each post and other genealogical finds. 

© 2018


Family photographs and documents from the collection of Diana Bryan Quinn

Elementary Course of Gaelic. Web. 21 May. 2018. <>.

Irish Language - Wikipedia. Web. 21 May. 2018. <>

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