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The Daltaí Boards » Archive: 1999-2004 » 2000 (January-June) » The use of Irish (Gaelic) « Previous Next »

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Christian (bg-tc-ppp514.monmouth.com - 209.191.63.74)
Posted on Monday, April 03, 2000 - 12:06 am:   Edit Post Print Post

I am a student at St. Michael's College. I recently was involved in a debate as to when Gaelic was primarily used in Ireland, its origins, and its near disappearance. I was wondering if u knew any web sites that would lead me to this information. Thank you.

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Anthony Valentino
Posted on Thursday, April 06, 2000 - 11:55 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

It is important to remember that "Gaelic" is not a language, but a group of languages
including Irish, Scottish, Welsh, Cornish, Manx, and Breton. Cornish and Manx were
extinct, but have been resurrected in recent years. The proper names for what is spoken
in Ireland (other than English) is Irish or Gaeilge. When "Gaelic" is seen it usually refers
to Scots-Gaelic and is therefore a (close) but different language.

The following website was compiled in late 1993. The situation is presented in a
pessimistic light. To my knowledge, the situation is not as grim as presented there, but
has only taken a *slight* upturn in the 90s...not to uncork the champagne yet...but don't
go making funeral arrangements, either. take it with a grain of salt.

http://www.helsinki.fi/~tas
almin/europe_report.html
#IGaeli

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Jonas (cache-external.it.helsinki.fi - 128.214.173.89)
Posted on Friday, April 07, 2000 - 08:17 am:   Edit Post Print Post

The above statement is only partially true. Irish, Scottish Gaelic and Manx ARE Gaelic languages.
Breton, Cornish and Welsh are NOT Gaelic Languages, they are Brittish languages. Both groups are however Celtic

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Laigheanach (ts13-115.dublin.indigo.ie - 194.125.173.115)
Posted on Friday, April 07, 2000 - 10:09 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Cornich, Welsh and Breton are bretonic languages or P-Celtic languages, to be precise.
Irish, Scots-Gaelic and Manx are gaelic or C-Celtic languages

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Laigheanach (ts13-115.dublin.indigo.ie - 194.125.173.115)
Posted on Friday, April 07, 2000 - 10:12 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Sorry that's meant to be Q-Celtic not C-Celtic.

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Anthony Valentino
Posted on Friday, April 07, 2000 - 04:54 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Very true...thanks for the correction. Don't forget Galatian. As the Celts swept
westward in pre classical europe, a small group stayed behind in what is now northern
Turkey...a place the Romans termed Galatia. This was because they saw a linguistic
similarity between these people and those they called Gauls living in Gallia, Gallia
Cisalpina, and Gallia Transalpina what we now know as France, Switzerland, the Italian
alps and even northern Spain. All of these people spoke a Celic tongue (Gallic - from
which we get the names for Gaelic and Gaels) older than old Irish. When the Roman
empire was in collapse, these Celtic people were pushed aside by Goths, Visigoths,
Ostrogoths et cetera. The gothic peoples who has pushed aside the Gauls and set up an
independent kingdom in Aquitannia were pushed aside by the incoming Franks who finally
stayed there. Celts in Britannia were pushed into Cornwall and Wales (the Romans never
held Scotland) by the incoming Angles and Saxons. Eventually the Ostrogoths made a
successfull conquest of Italy, forcing the last Western - Roman emperor into "retirement"
The Eastern (Byzantine) empire continued to flourish under a series of capaple emperors
until invasion by the Turks in the 1400s. It was the emperor Justinian which had limited
success with a re-conquest of Italy , Spain, and Northern Africa, but the celts had been
pushed into Bretagne, Cornwall, Wales and Scotland. Ireland had never been part of the
Roman empire, and so never experienced the vulnerability to barbarian invasion that the
newly abandoned provinces did. That is what allowed Ireland to chronicle the advances
of the Roman empire, else the Dark Ages would have been much darker and longer.
Virtually everything we know of Greek or Roman literature, science, or that Europe
converted to Christianity we owe to Irish monks in far-flung scriptoria, quietly writing it
all down, and re-converting the former Roman provinces, and re-introducing literacy and
their valuable information, allowing it to be rediscovered during the
Renaissance...............

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Anthony
Posted on Saturday, April 08, 2000 - 01:02 am:   Edit Post Print Post

BTW...I didn't mean that Galatian is close to the others in any way...they're very different,
so much so that the connection is unrecognizable except to a trained linguist, separated
by centuries and thousands of miles. I just mean that they have a common, ancient
celtic root...
........

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william fuller ( - 199.80.100.22)
Posted on Saturday, April 08, 2000 - 10:07 am:   Edit Post Print Post

somewhat differently phrased, in the above process the Anglo-Saxons "learned their letters" from Irish priests. From my understanding, the Teutonic peoples had "rune" writing , but then as above, the priests taught adaptation of the spoken tongue to Roman alphabet letters. Even a letter for that "th" sound, which may be unique to present-day "English".

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