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The Daltaí Boards » Archive: 1999-2004 » 2002 (January-June) » Translations of Irish Place Names « Previous Next »

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Sharon Keegan Bernstein (12.81.127.50)
Posted on Wednesday, June 19, 2002 - 12:54 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Hello,
I just found this site and am very pleased to know that so many folk are interested in learning the language, I hope to try myself someday. In the meantime would someone be able to provide English translations for the following Irish place names ?
Eden (the townland in Leitrim where my mother was born)
(Tully)Veane (the Tully part I understand but feel free to mention your ideas) (This is the townland where my ggggrandparents lived)


Also, would anyone have a linguistic explanation for the following dilemna ? (we know the literacy issues)
(questions are posed by Tom McFadden)
1) Are the (Leitrim) McPaddens really McPaddens from the Mayo McPaddens (who dropped the 'Mc' and became Paddens)? Or are they McFaddens from
Donegal?

2) They were all McPadden in Griffith's Valuation in Inishmagrath, but in the Tithe Applotment Book, half are "Padden" and half
are "Mcpadden." Is that significant?

3) Why are there McFaddens in Garvagh Glebe in Griffith's and in the census, but the birth registers have it "McPadden" for the same
families?

4) Why are the Drumreilly families "McFadden" in Griffith's?

5) Are any of the Leitrim "Paddens" really McPaddens?

6) Why were they so quick to change to McFadden when they emmigrated?
(Why am I a McFadden?)

Is there anything in the dialect differences between Connaught and Ulster and Donegal variations that could account for this ? His comments don't even touch on those who emigrated and ended up McFadyens (closer to the pronunciation) ?

A comment on some of the more virulent old discussions that I read on this site: My mother always regretted that she never had the opportunity to learn Irish. Her grandparents are listed on the 1901 census as being Irish speakers. In the small townland (Eden) where she lived, there was a well- known Hedge school cut into a muddy bank where the children had gone to learn. I think the movement to "rescue" this and other minority languages is one of the more important things that we can do as our world becomes "McDonaldized". It is especially amazing that so many (of we) Americans (who are so notoriously mono-lingual) are making a serious attempt to learn. I can sense the enjoyment that these learners are having with even a little knowledge. I am fluent in Spanish (although I started when I was 37 and supposedly over-the-hill linguistically). Suddenly being able to communicate with millions of other people was the most interesting thing I have ever done. I think that "getting inside" Irish would be equally miraculous.
Best wishes.
Sharon

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Ó Dúill (p488.as1.qkr.cork1.eircom.net - 159.134.181.232)
Posted on Wednesday, June 19, 2002 - 01:44 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Well Eden is the english translation of Eudan. What it means is "the brow, a hill brow"
Sorry cant help you on Tullyveane. Tully though coming from Tulach to mean "a little hill".
Couldnt help thinking the other questions were humourous,
Good luck,
Colm.

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Larry (host213-122-49-164.in-addr.btopenworld.com - 213.122.49.164)
Posted on Wednesday, June 19, 2002 - 04:01 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Tullybane - sometimes Tullybaun - comes from Tulaigh-bán meaning (a)white hill. I haven't heard of a place called Tullyveane, but don't put too much emphasis on that. I'm English :-)

Le meas,
Larry

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Seosamh Mac Muirí (proxy-server3.ul.ie - 136.201.1.52)
Posted on Friday, June 21, 2002 - 11:31 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Gabhaidh mo leithscéal a mhuintir liom. Is fada an scéala seo.
Apologies for the long post folks.
..................................

> I just found this site and am very pleased to know that so many folk are interested in learning the language, I hope to try myself someday.

Soon, Sharon, 'someday soon'! Tá fáilte romhat - you're welcome! I see (elsewhere) that you've been dropping into the Leitrim Roscommon site as well, which I was about to advise you do to! (There were a family of Lees on the Glencar side of Lurganboy, near 'Manor', until two generations ago. These Lees still have land there, but have resided in Cavan.)

> Also, would anyone have a linguistic explanation for the following dilemna ? (we know the literacy issues)
(questions are posed by Tom McFadden)
1) Are the (Leitrim) McPaddens really McPaddens from .....?

Mac Lysaght, grásta Dé ar anamnacha na marbh, was one of the many who sought family origins over and back, up and down the country, despite his own recognition of the constancy of habitation that Irish nomenclature shows us. Progenitors are generally to be found in the locality rather than in neighbouring counties or provinces. Mc Greal in Leitrim is good example of a name not recognised for what it is : Mac Néill > Mac Réill > Mag Réill. Mac Lysaght and others who follow him start associating them with Gallóglaigh in Mayo, blind to Clann Néill Uí Ruairc, blatantly there for all to see in mss. on the Ó Ruairc genealogies.

> 2) They were all McPadden in Griffith's Valuation in Inishmagrath, but in the Tithe Applotment Book, half are "Padden" and half
are "Mcpadden." Is that significant?

The Tithe Applotment Books (1827/8) are the only real source to show the most non-Anglophile transliterations of Irish surnames. The Griffith shows only the sad heritage that is carried on to the present day by the mass of the Irish people, who should know better. Modern education, through English, doesn't seem to influence the inner mind on such important matters. Most Irish speakers of both Galltacht and Gaeltacht carry on their lives with transliterations, semi-translations, psuedo-translations and insulting misunderstandings rather than simply using the original of their surname.

> 3) Why are there McFaddens in Garvagh Glebe in Griffith's and in the census, but the birth registers have it "McPadden" for the same
families?

Due to initial mutation of consonants, reflected accross the family through gender and other relationships, which you might look into when learning Irish. Church, state and personal contradictions of this sort are common. Leitrim still has a very few alternating surnames :

Mac Nama / Creamer,
Mac Naboola / Benbo
Mac Morrey (in speech) / Mc Morrow
Mulvanerty / Blessing
Mulvanerton / Blessington
Shanahy / Fox (one generation ago)
Roonian / Rooney (one generation ago)
and in sth. Donegal : Tully / Flood

A Gael from Milwaukee, who has good Irish and writes to sites like this, has convinced me that some Mac an tSaoir > Mac Intire / Mac Ateer people changed to 'Mason' over the last 100 plus years. Some such cases like his go undocumented.

> 4) Why are the Drumreilly families "McFadden" in Griffith's?

For the same reasons as no. 3.

> 5) Are any of the Leitrim "Paddens" really McPaddens?

I'm sure that a look at the Tithe App. Bks. will show clearly that Paddens were formerly Mc Padden/Mc Fadden/Mc Fadyen, etc. Such matters are not targeted for great study in the academic field, other than in passing on some knowledge of Irish heritage and the common noun, so there is no great data bank for such. People like yourself are left to the wolves of culteral tourism. The Office of Consumer Affairs would be as blind to misinformation in the field as anyone else. It is there to some extent.

> 6) Why were they so quick to change to McFadden when they emmigrated?
(Why am I a McFadden?)

Because your people accepted the mutated-initial form as being that most in use in the English language.

> Is there anything in the dialect differences between Connaught and Ulster and Donegal variations that could account for this ? His comments don't even touch on those who emigrated and ended up McFadyens (closer to the pronunciation) ?

Reasons of time and language dictate that Leitrim people are more Mc Tiernan than Mc Kiernan and that Cavan people are more Mc Kiernan than Mc Tiernan. Two families of Ó Ruairc became Mac Tighearnáin, hence Mc T(i)ernan, one in Glenade, the other in Killargy.
The Mac Thighearnáin > Mc Kiernan people of west Cavan never carried the surname Ó Ruairc. As a surname, they are circa 300 years older than the Leitrim families just mentioned. Can you just accept for the moment that such questions are very involved, very local and yet still are very national and further afield. (I just swept Roscommon, Fermanagh and other Mc Kiernans under the carpet!)
The field of Irish surnames has yet to achieve recognition for some proper study. It is not unconnected to the way that the Irish people at home and abroad have treated their language over the last six or seven generations.

> A comment on some of the more virulent old discussions that I read on this site: My mother always regretted that she never had the opportunity to learn Irish. Her grandparents are listed on the 1901 census as being Irish speakers. In the small townland (Eden) where she lived, there was a well- known Hedge school cut into a muddy bank where the children had gone to learn.

Take a plunge into the Leitrim Rosc. site and do a search on 'Irish Language' for some very pertinent comments. Your connection to the Flynns ought to bring you, some time in the futere, to an article on Theophilus O Flynn from Drumkeerin ca. 1770 in the journal, Seanchas Bréifne. (1958)
Aodh Ó Floinn of Tearmonn and Peadar Ó Floinn of Droim Caorthainn were two of the last native speakers of Irish from the area. (Bréifne 1967, 1968)

> I think the movement to "rescue" this and other minority languages is one of the more important things that we can do as our world becomes "McDonaldized". It is especially amazing that so many (of we) Americans (who are so notoriously mono-lingual) are making a serious attempt to learn. I can sense the enjoyment that these learners are having with even a little knowledge. I am fluent in Spanish (although I started when I was 37 and supposedly over-the-hill linguistically). Suddenly being able to communicate with millions of other people was the most interesting thing I have ever done.

I was pleasantly surprised on short visits to the States with the variety of languages that I heard.

> I think that "getting inside" Irish would be equally miraculous.

Abair é! You can sing it!

Go n-éirí leat - Good luck with it.

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