Forógra na Poblachta, 1916

Over the last several months there has been a noticeable spike in requests from various people seeking help with Irish language terms relating to the history and ideology of Republicanism in Ireland. I’ve offered assistance where I could or passed on the queries to more knowledgeable individuals, however I thought I’d compile a core glossary of the most requested terms. The permanent webpage containing all the information below will be located here, Téarmaíocht (Terminology), and I hope to keep it updated. If you spot any mistakes or debatable entries on my part please let me know.

Note: Unfortunately the practices governing the creation of abbreviations and acronyms in the Irish language have never been formerly codified with considerable variations and changes taking place over the last century and more (see a Scottish example of regulation here). Presently Irish tends to use rules closer to the English language than more traditional forms. So for example the word na “the, of” would rarely be abbreviated in historic Irish acronyms and likewise the eclipsis would normally be shown. This can be seen in the titles Cumann na mBan (CnamB), Raidio na Gaeltachta (RnaG), Teilifís na Gaeilge (TnaG), etc. However lately this is becoming rarer with Irish government translators abbreviating the name of the European Parliament in the Irish language, Parlaimint na hEorpa, as both PnaE and PE. It can also be seen in the acronym for the Office of Public Works, Oifig na nOibreacha Poiblí or OOP, and Cumann Croise Deirge na hÉireann or CCDÉ. Since it is still relatively common to find the retention of na in some historic titles I have kept this in the acronyms linked to above with the alternative versions minus the na in square brackets [].

Thanks to everyone who contacted me in relation to this post, including Maitiú, Pádraig, JP, Louise and Eoin.

On-line References

In PDF format here is the official Foclóir Béarla–Gaeilge de Théarmaí Míleata agus de Théarmaí Gaolmhara (English–Irish Dictionary of Military and Related Terms), 2007, as published by Ireland’s Department of Defence.

Ireland’s official on-line New English-Irish Dictionary, Foclóir.

Ireland’s official on-line Dictionary and Language Library, Breis Foclóir, a companion to the New English-Irish Dictionary project.

Ireland’s official on-line National Terminology Database for Irish, Focal.

On-line version of Foclóir Gaedhilge agus Béarla – Foclóir Uí Dhuinnín, 1927 edition (longer).

On-line version of Foclóir Gaedhilge agus Béarla – Foclóir Uí Dhuinnín, 1904 edition (shorter).

The European Union’s drafting and translations page for Irish with on-line resources.

For more Irish language links the website Scríobh is an excellent place to start.

1 comment on “Irish Republican Language

  1. an lorcánach

    outstanding, sionnach — pre-90s leaving cert volumes of irish and english translations of history books like ‘Conquest and colonization’ / ‘Concas agus cóilíniú’ — i hadn’t heard before of — would still buy a new print edition of irish-english and english-irish, provided the printing were sourced benefiting local workers (contravenes federal competition law) — beir bua, @


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