Saturday, January 7, 2012

Rathlin & Glens Irish

For those of you who may not have noticed that the description of this blog states it is "a blog of interesting news and commentary on Liberal & Esoteric Freemasonry and other stuff," this is one of those postings on "other stuff." One of my life long interests has been all varieties of the Gaelic Language. I speak Ulster Irish fluently and my special interest has long been the Gaelic of Central and East Ulster, my family hailing as it does from County Tyrone (Tír Eoghain) in Central Ulster.

So, it was for me an unexpected pleasure to find a blog dedicated to the teaching of the Gaelic of Rathlin Island and and the Glens of Antrim. The blog itself, appropriately enough is in Gaelic. For those of you who can't read Gaelic, there is a button on the right of the blog for using Google Translator.

Although most reading this blog may be indifferent to this post, I am thrilled beyond words and will be reading it from start to finish before dinner today!

Gaelic, both Irish and Scots Gaelic, which share a relationship which is a little closer than that of Spanish and Portuguese, are both endangered languages. Why should anyone care? Well, the planet is at risk of losing most of its languages within the next one hundred years. Language death really is a serious problem, as each language, and many of these endangered languages unlike Gaelic have no literary corpus, represent significant adaptations of the human species to their environment. When a language dies, it takes with it a highly developed and unique system of knowledge that is irreplaceable. We will revisit the issue of language death in the not too distant future, with articles and links which explain why we all should be concerned.

Until then, let me say to all who can understand it, Labhair an teanga Gaedhilg liom!

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