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The Daltaí Boards » Archive: 1999-2004 » 2002 (July-December) » Cape « Previous Next »

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Mary (228.piscataway-06rh15rt.nj.dial-access.att.net - 12.89.74.228)
Posted on Sunday, November 10, 2002 - 01:32 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

I have a cape that was my mothers, made in Ireland. It is the typical color and weave of Irish sweaters one always sees. It has a long shawl/collar that is attached, and wraps very warmly around ones neck, or can be lifted up to make a hood. It is attached front to back so that it sort of has sleeves (caftan-like). Is there a specific Irish word for this sort of cape? Also, I see that you always refer to the Irish language as Gaelic, but I was sitting on a plane once, next to an Irish college student who was a big supporter of the language, and he always referred to it as "Irish". Any comment?Mary

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Seosamh Mac Muirí (proxy-server3.ul.ie - 136.201.1.52)
Posted on Sunday, November 10, 2002 - 02:19 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Dia duit, a Mháire,

Your hooded garment seems to have been referred to as a 'seanóg' in Tipperary.
'Fallaing' would be the first word that comes to mind for a cape.
'Cideog' for the coat on shoulders in crossing the yard on a wet day towards a shed and such.
People swore by their cape as in exclaiming :

'Dar m'fhallaing, ...'

'(Irish) Gaelic' is preferred west of the Atlantic and 'Irish' to the east of it for various reasons.

Ádh mór.

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Mary (48.piscataway-05rh15rt.nj.dial-access.att.net - 12.89.72.48)
Posted on Monday, November 11, 2002 - 06:59 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Thank you for your prompt reply. Can you supply a prononciation for each one? I would pick the easiest one to pronounce when referring to it! Although, I would prefer the one in the swear. I have studied Irish at a little community college here in a short 8 week course, and found it difficult. Even though I am fluent in french and english, and have studied german, Irish is by far the hardest. When I am older and have more time, I will study it again. Thanks for your response. Also, what are the various reasons? This young man referred to it at "the Irish", by the way.

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Seosamh Mac Muirí (proxy-server3.ul.ie - 136.201.1.52)
Posted on Tuesday, November 12, 2002 - 04:55 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Thank you for your prompt reply.
Tá fáilte romhat a Mháire.

...., I would prefer the one in the swear.

The one also which is most generally understandable :
'dar' as in 'dem dar hills'!
'mal' as in 'malevolent'.
'ang' as in 'angst'.

(a) 'shan-OGE' and (b) 'SHAN-oge'; (a) would formerly have been the most common pronounciation, such stress having been further north and west than is now realised.

'keedge-OGE' and 'KEEDGE-oge' similarly.

.... I have studied Irish at a little community college here in a short 8 week course, and found it difficult.

This would have been too short a time span to give one a solid opinion, I suggest.

.... Even though I am fluent in french and english, and have studied german, Irish is by far the hardest.

Irish and Celtic languages in general, greatly misbehaves as an Indo-European language, so it would seem quite strange and ungripable. There are ways to come around to the other side where the door is!

.... When I am older and have more time, I will study it again.

If you are very young, now is the best time to go at it.

.... Also, what are the various reasons? This young man referred to it as "the Irish", by the way.

Some people in Ireland who may have wished, occasionally, to de-nationalize the language have used 'Gaelic' to describe what seems to them to be a regional tongue, or even a patois. They may consider Irish as a dialect, in a way quaint and remote, and Celtic to be a language, romantic, fairies, Twilight, Willy B. and you name it. One doesn't hear for example, much about the wanderlust of the Saxons, the sad old melancholic songs of the Saxons, nor of the Saxon dialect spoken in east Bromwich. Were the tables to be turned historically, one might have heard the descendants of English-Americans - who came over during the famine in the home counties - describe on-line to 'Scholars of English' how they are proud to be learning the Saxon language of their forefathers. Dar m'fhallaing!

Just a thought!

In a word, language when described in another, is touching on nation and therefore, is politic. Most all of the Irish people will describe the language when speaking English as 'Irish'. Another term that may have a tender spot might be 'Galltacht'. (= English-speaking Ireland) Some few people think that it is too strong and descriminatory, considering that many matters of usage, thought and nomenclature which are very native can be found in rural English-speaking Ireland. The best example to mind is a farmers reply to me in the 1970s when I described a physical structure to him on the mountain above his land. 'That's the Clash Doo'. (= An Chlais Dubh) This brought me back some 1,500 years as he was referring to the Black Pigs Dyke, giving me the name as it had came down among his people! I hadn't seen or heard it in Irish before this.

Ádh mór.

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