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#the irish for

John Cleese versus the Irish language: Don't mention the 'bh' war
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John Cleese versus the Irish language: Don't mention the 'bh' war

Jun 28th 2019, 7:00 AM 50,053 Views 85 Comments

Cleese said that Irish names look like deliberate attempts to mislead innocent people but this is not the case, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: Cockwombles and the decline of British insults
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The Irish For: Cockwombles and the decline of British insults

Jun 23rd 2019, 8:30 AM 28,432 Views 18 Comments

The Brexit process should be a golden age for satirists and comedians, but unfortunately, something else has happened, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: A Bloomsday Breakfast with extra Subh Milis on Father’s Day 2019
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The Irish For: A Bloomsday Breakfast with extra Subh Milis on Father’s Day 2019

Jun 16th 2019, 8:30 AM 15,053 Views 5 Comments

In some ways, it is serendipitous that these two events should happen on the same Sunday, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: Cans, Tans and Summer Plans
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The Irish For: Cans, Tans and Summer Plans

Jun 9th 2019, 8:30 AM 19,176 Views 4 Comments

Samhradh comes with a sense of disappointment, rarely delivering on its promises of sunshine and gaiety, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: Don’t Be Such A Gorilla-Whale-Daughter-In-Law
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The Irish For: Don’t Be Such A Gorilla-Whale-Daughter-In-Law

May 26th 2019, 8:30 AM 26,181 Views 10 Comments

To translate the meaning of Bridezilla effectively we need to pop the bonnet of the word and look at the moving parts, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: Let's settle the 'crack' versus 'craic' debate by looking at the evidence
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The Irish For: Let's settle the 'crack' versus 'craic' debate by looking at the evidence

May 19th 2019, 8:30 AM 27,877 Views 37 Comments

The word appears to originate before 1900 in parts of Ireland where spoken Irish was high and literacy was low, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: Hiberno English is a feature not a bug
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The Irish For: Hiberno English is a feature not a bug

May 12th 2019, 8:30 AM 21,529 Views 14 Comments

Sometimes Béarla and Gaeilge are presented as being in conflict in Ireland, but they’re both part of our cultural heritage, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: Did the Irish language influence the names of Gollum and the orcs in the Lord of the Rings?
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The Irish For: Did the Irish language influence the names of Gollum and the orcs in the Lord of the Rings?

May 5th 2019, 8:30 AM 29,816 Views 23 Comments

J. R. R. Tolkien once tried to learn Irish in Galway but he dismissed the language as suffering from “fundamental unreason,” writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: How Beyoncé is helping to get fadas in formation
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The Irish For: How Beyoncé is helping to get fadas in formation

Apr 28th 2019, 8:30 AM 42,427 Views 14 Comments

Thanks to Queen Bé, April 2019 has been an interesting month for accessorised letters, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: Why do we remember things from TV and what does that mean for learning languages?
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The Irish For: Why do we remember things from TV and what does that mean for learning languages?

Apr 21st 2019, 8:30 AM 15,533 Views 14 Comments

‘Thousands of Irish people know their rights if they’re arrested in America but not if they’re arrested in Ireland… and nobody would know what mitosis was if it wasn’t for Sabrina,’ writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: The Irish language version of Wikipedia is going strong
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The Irish For: The Irish language version of Wikipedia is going strong

Mar 31st 2019, 8:30 AM 14,731 Views 19 Comments

Sure enough, one of the longest, best laid-out and most carefully edited pages in An Vicipéid is the page on Star Trek, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish for: Irish is the first language of the constitution. Here's some legal terminology as Gaeilge
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The Irish for: Irish is the first language of the constitution. Here's some legal terminology as Gaeilge

Mar 24th 2019, 8:30 AM 15,918 Views 12 Comments

Bannaí means bail and is not to be confused with banaí which means a womaniser, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: The word Tory comes from the Irish word tóraí meaning a bandit or outlaw
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The Irish For: The word Tory comes from the Irish word tóraí meaning a bandit or outlaw

Mar 17th 2019, 8:30 AM 50,725 Views 29 Comments

If you’re doing your Irish oral exam next week – you’ll need to know how to say ‘confidence and supply agreement’ and ‘frictionless border’, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: Some older words don't exist in English - clochscríbhinn means an inscription on stone
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The Irish For: Some older words don't exist in English - clochscríbhinn means an inscription on stone

Mar 10th 2019, 8:15 AM 47,454 Views 22 Comments

George Orwell said that history was a palimpsest – a chalkboard which could be scraped clean and reinscribed, exactly as often as necessary, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: While Europe was stuck in the Dark Ages - Ireland's Brehon laws were relatively enlightened
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The Irish For: While Europe was stuck in the Dark Ages - Ireland's Brehon laws were relatively enlightened

Mar 3rd 2019, 8:30 AM 35,272 Views 28 Comments

Satire (Áer) was taken as seriously as physical assault in old Ireland and a range of satirical offences were deemed to warrant compensation, including ‘coining a nickname that sticks’, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: What does old Irish tell us about life in ancient Ireland?
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The Irish For: What does old Irish tell us about life in ancient Ireland?

Feb 24th 2019, 8:30 AM 39,828 Views 10 Comments

Did the knights of the Fianna use their frithbacáin (handbrake) to do doughnuts, and other boy racer tricks, in the medieval equivalent of an industrial estate? wonders Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: What do these popular boys' names mean - and what can we learn from them?
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The Irish For: What do these popular boys' names mean - and what can we learn from them?

Feb 17th 2019, 8:45 AM 63,703 Views 22 Comments

Social trends are reflected in different names, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha, whose first name means “like an oak tree”.

The Irish For: Gender, LGBT and transitioning
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The Irish For: Gender, LGBT and transitioning

Jan 27th 2019, 8:45 AM 23,825 Views 52 Comments

Aerach means gay in both the modern sense as well as the original meaning of happy and carefree writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: How many colours can you remember?
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The Irish For: How many colours can you remember?

Jan 20th 2019, 8:45 AM 31,651 Views 28 Comments

Different languages across the world look at the spectrum and make different calls on where certain colours begin and end, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: Brexit and the rise of Hiberno-English
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The Irish For: Brexit and the rise of Hiberno-English

Jan 13th 2019, 8:45 AM 34,403 Views 40 Comments

With the United Kingdom set to leave the European Union this year, it’s time for Hiberno English to become the official language of the EU, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For: Forget the January blues - let's talk about birds
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The Irish For: Forget the January blues - let's talk about birds

Jan 6th 2019, 8:45 AM 17,517 Views 6 Comments

The fact that the Irish words for duck and lake sound similar gives an alliterative flourish to a seanfhocal about not sweating the small stuff: Ní troimide an loch an lacha – the lake is not heavier for having a duck on it, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For... All the most important Christmas words (including Fairytale of New York as Gaeilge)
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The Irish For... All the most important Christmas words (including Fairytale of New York as Gaeilge)

Dec 24th 2018, 10:31 AM 18,109 Views 13 Comments

Hó hó hó! Darach Ó Séaghdha has a selection box of Irish words for Christmas.

The Irish For: The word deatach, meaning smoke, also refers to the family huddled together around the fire
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The Irish For: The word deatach, meaning smoke, also refers to the family huddled together around the fire

Dec 16th 2018, 8:45 AM 22,316 Views 7 Comments

As one of the first human inventions fire is often used as a metaphor for human civilisation and its downsides, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

WIN: We have signed copies of Craic Baby by Darach Ó Séaghdha up for grabs
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WIN: We have signed copies of Craic Baby by Darach Ó Séaghdha up for grabs

Dec 15th 2018, 4:30 PM 11,033 Views 7 Comments

Iontach!

The Irish For: All the characters you  know - good, bad or total craic vortex
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The Irish For: All the characters you know - good, bad or total craic vortex

Dec 9th 2018, 8:45 AM 16,512 Views 11 Comments

Darach Ó Séaghdha has a typecast character for every letter in the alphabet – the funny one, the vulgar one, the one with notions or the one who sucks all the craic clean out of the room.

The Irish For: As the nights are closing in - curl up by the fire and learn some winter words
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The Irish For: As the nights are closing in - curl up by the fire and learn some winter words

Dec 2nd 2018, 8:45 AM 22,984 Views 13 Comments

Codladh Geimhridh literally means ‘winter sleep’ and is the Irish for hibernation. Sometimes that feels like a viable option in the Land of Eternal Winter (Hibernia), writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For... it's fun to drink uisce beatha in a síbín - but watch out for the poison drop
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The Irish For... it's fun to drink uisce beatha in a síbín - but watch out for the poison drop

Nov 25th 2018, 8:45 AM 31,148 Views 11 Comments

If the Irish phrase for a hangover doesn’t put you off drink nothing will – ‘braon nimhe sa ceann’ means ‘a poison drop to the head’, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

The Irish For...The role of dogs in legends, proverbs and the Brehon laws
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The Irish For...The role of dogs in legends, proverbs and the Brehon laws

Nov 18th 2018, 8:45 AM 28,234 Views 18 Comments

Dogs took centre stage in Irish mythology, stories and proverbs, just like they dominate our social media feeds today, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha

The Irish For... Seal snot: The literal translations of sea creatures are brilliant
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The Irish For... Seal snot: The literal translations of sea creatures are brilliant

Nov 11th 2018, 8:45 AM 31,012 Views 16 Comments

The Irish term for a jellyfish translates literally as seal snot. If this floats your boat you might also enjoy mathair shúigh – suckmother – for squid.

The Irish For... Some spooky Irish words to get you in the mood for Samhain
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The Irish For... Some spooky Irish words to get you in the mood for Samhain

Oct 28th 2018, 8:45 AM 34,670 Views 15 Comments

Darach Ó Séaghdha talks us through the meaning of some spooky words like Cendail, a collective noun for the heads of one’s decapitated enemies.

The Irish For... How the Vikings influenced the Irish language
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The Irish For... How the Vikings influenced the Irish language

Oct 21st 2018, 8:45 AM 49,841 Views 34 Comments

Darach Ó Séaghdha talks us through the meaning behind some words that get their origin from Medieval Ireland’s interaction with Scandanavia.

The Irish For... A drunken swaggerer and a place abounding in dogs
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The Irish For... A drunken swaggerer and a place abounding in dogs

Oct 14th 2018, 8:45 AM 28,936 Views 10 Comments

Darach O Séaghdha talks us through some of the marvelous definitions in the venerable Dinneen dictionary.

The Irish For... You'll find some of the most beautiful autumnal words as Gaeilge
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The Irish For... You'll find some of the most beautiful autumnal words as Gaeilge

Oct 7th 2018, 8:45 AM 68,372 Views 45 Comments

Darach Ó Séaghdha brings us all the wonderful Irish words for things like the harvest moon, conkers, and the rustling sound made by trees.

The Irish For... Why do feelings run so high around the letter V?
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The Irish For... Why do feelings run so high around the letter V?

Sep 30th 2018, 8:45 AM 37,319 Views 46 Comments

Is V a cheeky stowaway in the Irish language? Darach Ó Séaghdha takes a look.

The Irish For...What can we learn from the rise and fall of Irish girls' names?
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The Irish For...What can we learn from the rise and fall of Irish girls' names?

Sep 23rd 2018, 8:45 AM 83,676 Views 56 Comments

Gaeilgeoir Darach O Séaghdha talks us through the meaning behind names like Saoirse, Órla and Aoife – and what we can learn from them.

The Irish For... What do Irish political names tell us about their roles?
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The Irish For... What do Irish political names tell us about their roles?

Sep 16th 2018, 8:45 AM 23,421 Views 17 Comments

Gaeilgóir Darach O Séaghdha talks us through what the Irish for everything from Taoiseach to TD means – and what we can learn from it.

18 ways to describe Hurricane Ophelia as Gaeilge
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18 ways to describe Hurricane Ophelia as Gaeilge

Oct 16th 2017, 6:00 PM 12,171 Views 3 Comments

With help from The Irish For.

'Irish is a dead language? Judging by your punctuation, English isn't far off either'
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'Irish is a dead language? Judging by your punctuation, English isn't far off either'

Aug 27th 2017, 9:00 PM 41,824 Views 79 Comments

Darach Ó Séaghdha, who runs the successful Twitter account “The Irish for”, is publishing a book on why Irish may not be dead just yet.

Irish Twitter has been having a glorious debate about what 'crisp sandwich' is as Gaeilge
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Irish Twitter has been having a glorious debate about what 'crisp sandwich' is as Gaeilge

Apr 28th 2017, 7:56 PM 6,053 Views 0 Comments

And now we have an answer.

7 dangerously similar sounding words as Gaeilge
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7 dangerously similar sounding words as Gaeilge

Mar 18th 2017, 8:00 PM 10,294 Views 5 Comments

ár nAthair v an nathair