"Béarla."

Translation:English.

4 years ago

34 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/GrandApple
GrandApple
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A nice name for English. Sounds like a real name.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/talideon
talideon
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It's an abbreviation of 'sacs-béarla', literally 'saxon language'. Originally 'béarla' meant language in general, but came to mean primarily English. In modern Irish, 'teanga' ('tongue') is typically used for 'language'.

'Béarla' is also sometimes used to mean 'gibberish'.

Etymology corner: the word originated from 'beal-ra', which meant 'something produced by the mouth'. 'Beal' is 'mouth' in Irish.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NiallT
NiallT
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Actually, I believe "gibberish" was the original meaning. The two words for language were teanga and canan, the first being the current Irish, the second being the common word in Scottish Gaelic.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ungewitig_Wiht

So the Irish called our language "Saxon gibberish"? That's actually pretty funny

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Brusslesbrout

"gibberish" describes English very well XD

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Eamonn1963

Only when spoken by Westminster politicians. :-)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/talideon
talideon
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I perhaps wasn't precise enough in my definition. What I meant when I said 'language in general' was akin to the contrast between 'langage' and 'langue'. The former refers the the faculty of speech (including voices, gibberish, &c.), while the latter, like 'teanga' refers to specific languages. It could be used to refer to incomprehensible blather in OI, but it was also a component of words like 'bérlamail', which meant 'fluent'.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Katia
Katia
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That's very interesting! Many thanks! Do you know of any book/source about the linguistic history of Irish? Many thanks. :)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/talideon
talideon
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Not really. The only ones I have are rather scholarly and dense, such as Rudolf Thurneysen's "A Grammar of Old Irish", which isn't exactly an easy read.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Katia
Katia
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Many thanks! And don't worry about the difficulty, I am already studying philology and linguistics and know how hard it can be. :)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/israellai
israellai
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Wow, this is amazing.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrea477019

This is very similar to the original meaning of "barbarian" in ancient Greece, but the words seem to be unrelated

8 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tanay_b
tanay_b
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So English=Gibberish. Got it.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GrandApple
GrandApple
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Thanks!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/nukeqler
nukeqler
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"Type in English". Ok then. :-)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnonToriYT

No béarla. reminds me of this : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eyll-bBZzyk

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/alphabeta
alphabeta
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That sent me down a rabbit hole; I watched the whole thing.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MartinJami1

Same rabbit hole. 4 episides of TV goodness.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jasperiscool309

Thanks. Love it!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Gomer_Pyle
Gomer_Pyle
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Thanks! I just watched the first episode and it is very interesting; now I'm going to have to finish the rest of them!

7 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/zamlet
zamlet
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Does this word mean exclusively "English", the language, or does it mean "English" in a more general sense (i.e. something from England)? It's not clear from the context here.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/talideon
talideon
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It refers to the language, and that's it.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/zamlet
zamlet
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OK, thanks!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ataltane
ataltane
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"English" in the general sense is Sasanach, from "Saxon"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LaylaKnowe

"Sasanach" is the word for english as in "coming from england"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/owenvenes
owenvenes
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My answer of "couldn't score a try to save their lives" wasn't accepted :(

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ruamac
ruamac
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LOL - reminds me of the joke I heard yesterday - An Englishman walked into a pub . . . usually there'd be an Irishman, a Scotsman, and a Welshman there too but they're still at the rugby world cup:)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/-Zorua-
-Zorua-
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English is the language of bears.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Purple-Navi

Are accents really important? Like can i get away with "e" instead of " é "

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ruamac
ruamac
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Yes, the accent, or 'sineadh fada' as it is called, is very important. If left out or put in the wrong place it can convey a completely different meaning. For instance, the word for 'man' is 'fear' and the word for 'grass' is 'féar'. When you're speaking the words sound different so it doesn't cause a problem but when writing, you wouldn't want to tell someone that you cut the man with a scythe:)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NiallT
NiallT
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Yes and no respectively. They mark different sounds (mostly just a difference in vowel length).

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/nahuatl1939
nahuatl1939
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i remember reading somewhere that the Scots call the English " SASSENACH" or something like that. does it mean "english" or " saxon" ?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnnikaFiercely
AnnikaFiercely
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Yes. 'Béarla' is the word for the English language, 'Sasanach' means 'English' in other senses. I assume it comes from 'Saxon' but the current word for 'Saxon' is 'Sacsanach'. 'Sasana' is 'England'.

10 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aya159236

Boss lol.

2 weeks ago
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