https://www.duolingo.com/duilinn

The last speakers of a lost dialect Co. Clare

https://reddit.com/r/gaeilge/comments/8lbhyq/the_last_speakers_of_a_lost_dialect_co_clare/

I thought I'd post this here, as it hasn't been posted already. It's good to see that native speakers survived in Co. Clare until the 1980s, although sad that none of the Irish of this area remains.

6 months ago

4 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/KellyManni3

Thanks, nice to read. In the video I could pick out 'agus' and 'agat', ha!

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CeoltoirAV
CeoltoirAV
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Unfortunately, I wasn't able to retrieve that article in English – the link keeps sending me elsewhere (although the Irish version works fine). But searching for it I learned with sadness that the Irish poet Liam Ó Muirthile had died a few days ago, at only 68. I know his poetry through English translations. Still, here is a beautiful couplet of his that I can almost understand from what I’ve learned on Duolingo:

Ní bhíonn riamh idir sinn agus an bás (/) ach ár gcroí faoi lánseol agus an canbhás

which Bernard O’Donoghue renders as

There’s nothing ever between us and death (/) but our hearts in full sail and the canvas

This excerpt is from a particularly moving poem entitled “Caoineadh na bpúcaí”, a reference apparently to a traditional Blasket Islands tune, usually “Port na bpúcaí”, with several soulful renditions on YouTube - where you can also find a few recordings of Ó Muirthile reading (but not this poem, or I haven't run across it yet).

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scilling
scilling
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Did the poem use ár gcroí (“our heart”) or ár gcroíthe (“our hearts”)? If it used ár gcroí, then perhaps “our love” might have been another way to translate it.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CeoltoirAV
CeoltoirAV
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Thanks, Scilling. It is "ár gcroí", at least in the anthology in which I found it. A possible rationale for “hearts”: Looking at the nine couplets that comprise the entire poem, almost every couplet except for the first and the last refers to some body part - “hides” [craiceann], ribs, hands, fingers, backs, ears, flesh and bones; so "hearts" fits into that pattern.

Also, perhaps the translator felt that “loves” would be too personal here; the poem is addressed to the keener, whose keening acts powerfully on an otherwise abstract “us”: “the wind-driven swell of the sea in your music / that swells our sails with the power of demons” as the first couplet has it [“Sí suaill na mara ȯn ngaoith id cheol” – is “id” a contraction, of ‘i do’? / “a bholgann le pabhar na bpúcaí ár seol”; I don’t like translating “púcaí” with “demons”, but I have no idea what I’d use instead – “pookas” or "hobgoblins" doesn’t inspire the same awe in English, for me anyway).

6 months ago
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