10 facts about the Irish language
Origin of the language
Irish Gaelic emerged on the island of Ireland.
History of the language
It is thought that it originated in the 4th century.
Learning the language
For an English speaker, it is estimated that it takes 4,400-5,500 hours to learn Irish.
Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.
Poet, essayist and playwright
I’m a believer in acts of kindness, no matter how small.
When anyone asks me about the Irish character, I say look at the trees. Maimed, stark and misshapen, but ferociously tenacious.
Playwright and novelist
Fun facts about the Irish Language
The language was revived
The Republic of Ireland was officially formed in 1922, and it recognized Irish and English as its official languages.
The official standard Irish
The official standard Irish is known as A Caighdeán Oifigiúil and is a combination of the 3 main dialects of Irish. It is commonly taught in schools.
Irish uses the case system
Irish, like German and Latin, has a case system with four cases to highlight the different functions of nouns and pronouns in a phrase.
Irish uses the Latin script
The Latin alphabet is used for Irish but not all the letters are included. Several characters such as j , k, q, v, w, x, y, and z are not used in the Irish language.
1.2 million speakers
An average of 1.2 million people speak Irish across the globe; of these, 170,000 people speak Irish as their first language.
Influenced by several languages
Apart from obvious inspiration from English and Latin, Irish Gaelic has been heavily influenced by French and the language of the Vikings.
Irish words incorporated into English
Words such as hooligan, boycott and slob have all seeped into the English language by way of the Irish language.
Teenagers learn Irish during their summer holidays
Many families have developed the custom of sending their kids to live with Gaeltacht families in the summer to gain a better understanding of the Irish language.