Celtic Cosmology, Perspectives from Ireland and Scotland

Cairn Loch Craobh Sliabh na Cailli Loch Craobh An Mhi Eire

Over the last two decades relatively few studies have been published analysing the cosmological traditions of the Celtic-speaking peoples, at least by academic authors. There was a lot of interest in such matters in the 1980s and early ‘90s, coupled with tentative suggestions about the composition of native Irish or Welsh beliefs in the composition of the … Continue reading

It Seems That Bigotry Unites As Well As Divides

British unionist and nationalist supporters holding anti-independence signs giving Nazi salutes in Glasgow, Scotland

  Continuing with the controversies that have arisen in the eastern Scottish region of Fife where British nationalist politicians from the main Unionist parties have sought to impede the provision of bilingual services to citizens who speak the indigenous Scottish (Gaelic) language we have this frustrated reaction from two local doctors, featured in the Courier newspaper: “NHS Fife could lose two much-needed consultants … Continue reading

The English Empire Strikes Back In Scotland

Albain (Scotland)

Following on from yesterday’s post examining press reports that Dundee City Council had agreed to reverse efforts to place the English and Scottish (Gaelic) languages on an equal footing in Scotland’s fourth largest city through the provision of bilingual services and public signage comes this news from the council area of Fife. Politicians from the main British nationalist … Continue reading

The United Languages Of Europe

Saor Alba - Free Scotland

Contrast and compare these stories from Scotland on the Scottish (Gaelic) language. First up, from the Courier: “Ambitious plans to promote Gaelic in Dundee have been significantly scaled back. Council chiefs have been forced to slash key elements of the proposals after opponents questioned the city’s links with the language and the potential costs involved. … Continue reading

Translation Fail

Sign of Albain or Scotland

Cautioning on the perils of machine translation, especially when expectations surpass achievable results, Michael Bauer on his Dear Developer blog posts a letter he has written to the Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser following the latter’s suggestion that Scottish (Scottish Gaelic) be added to the list of languages available on Google Translate: “I’m sure that this is a well-intentioned idea but in my professional opinion, … Continue reading

Prosecutions In Catalonia, Political Revolution In Scotland

An Chatalóin (Catalonia)

The newly authoritarian tone of politics and government in Spain becomes more evident with every passing week. Following a range of laws passed by Madrid banning many forms of public protest we now have reports that the regional government in Barcelona may be prosecuted by the Spanish state following the recent ad hoc independence referendum for Catalonia … Continue reading

The Gaelic Union

The Celtic Nations

A new website to strengthen ties between Gaelic-speaking communities in Ireland and Scotland, as well as encouraging cultural tourism by non-Gaels, has been launched in Inverness. From the Scotsman newspaper: “TurasG will build on the links between the Scottish Gaidhealtachd and Ireland’s Gaeltacht. World-renowned singer Julie Fowlis, fresh from the Scottish Music Awards, where she … Continue reading

Scottish Gaelic And Glasgow University

Sign of Albain or Scotland

The University of Glasgow or Oilthigh Ghlaschu is celebrating its historic links with the Scottish-speaking communities of Scotland thanks to a project called Sgeul na Gàidhlig aig Oilthigh Ghlaschu, as reported by the Scotsman newspaper: “ONE OF Scotland’s oldest universities has had a continuous presence of Gaelic speakers for more than 500 years, a new study has found. Researchers … Continue reading

Samhain Shona Daoibh

Samhain - Feis Shamhna

The sun has set, the bonfires are being lit, and the Feis Shamhna is upon us: the nocturnal festival of Samhain marking the commencement of the new year in the Celtic calendars of Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man. This ancient celebration was partly assimilated by the Christian religions in the Medieval period as All Saints’ Day or All Hallows’ Eve (Halloween) and has been revived in recent … Continue reading

The Digital Archive of Scottish Gaelic

The National Library of Scotland, Early Gaelic Book Collection

The first phase of Dachaigh airson Stòras na Gàidhlig or the Digital Archive of Scottish Gaelic has been completed by Glasgow University with the launch of an online database featuring digitised versions of texts dating from the 12th to 21st centuries. It is planned that the finished project will include literary and vernacular examples of the language not just … Continue reading

Scottish Democracy Meets X Factor

Saor Albain - Saor Alba - Free Scotland

In the recent Scottish referendum 44% of voters said “Yes” to an independent Scotland. In contrast 56% of voters said “No” with the general understanding that this rejection of independence was conditional on further powers being devolved to the Edinburgh parliament and government from their London counterparts. The promise of so-called “devo-max” in return for … Continue reading

Catalonia’s Hesitant Nationalists

An Chatalóin (Catalonia)

“If anyone can the Catalans can” or so goes the saying amongst political activists in those minority communities of the European Union seeking greater autonomy or outright independence from Europe’s major nation-states. Unlike the recent independence referendum in Scotland where there were always doubts about the aspirations of the majority (and where appeals to people’s … Continue reading

  • blog awards ireland Nominated 2013: Best Politics, Personal Blog Categories; Best Blog Post
  • blog awards ireland

    Nominated 2014: Best News, Current Affairs, Politics, Mobile Blog Categories; Best Blog Post

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