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The Daltaí Boards » Archive: 1999-2004 » 2004 (January-March) » Etymology in Irish ( --Greek by another name?) « Previous Next »

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Dan OHanlon (217.137.246.70 - 217.137.246.70)
Posted on Tuesday, December 16, 2003 - 04:10 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

A Chara,

Hello,

I regret, I do not speak Irish, and yet I have cause to try and trace the origin of the Irish "Cill" (churchyard). I have reason to suspect it comes from the Classical Greek, "Chilos" ("green fodder"). Can anyone help me out here?

On the Greek connection, is anybody out there as curious as I am about the apparent significant similarities between words in Irish and Classical Greek? (Not that it should be any surprise, given the role of the Irish monks in the Middle Ages--used to be called the Dark Ages--the Irish being the only ones in Europe (besides the Greeks themselves) who for nearly a thousand years, studied the language.

(Please reply to or cc my email address)

Regards,
Dan O'Hanlon

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OCG (217.155.45.123 - 217.155.45.123)
Posted on Tuesday, December 16, 2003 - 05:29 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Hi Dan,

I don'tknow about "Cill" but seeing as Greek and Irish are members of the Indo-European family, it would not be surprising if there is a link between them.

Dennis King has a great website with a selection of Irish words and their IE roots:

http://www.lincolnu.edu/~focal/ieroots.htm

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OCG (217.155.45.122 - 217.155.45.122)
Posted on Tuesday, December 16, 2003 - 08:38 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Hi Dan,

Been looking on Google and the concensus is that Cill derives from the Latin "cella" meaning "a small room in a house" but probably acquired monastic connotations.

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Aonghus (62.77.191.130 - 62.77.191.130)
Posted on Wednesday, December 17, 2003 - 04:19 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Cill means cell, but came also to mean chapel

Placenames with Cill (Kill anglicized) in Irish are usually the place a saint lived or where his/her cell was

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Diarmuid (217.163.5.253 - 217.163.5.253)
Posted on Tuesday, January 27, 2004 - 11:38 am:   Edit Post Print Post

http://www.ceantar.org/Dicts/MB2/index.html

This is an Etymological Dictionary of the Gaelic Language (Scotland!!)...well Scots'Gaelic anyway!

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