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Dublin: 10 °C Wednesday 27 May, 2020

Sunday 5 April, 2020

The Irish For: Although apart for now, when we reunite, it will be the stuff of poetry. Crisis survival tips from the Irish language

We look to language when seeking a reassuring symbol of endurance, Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha writes.

Sunday 29 March, 2020

The Irish For: Kiltartanese and a passionate affair. The story of Galway's Lady Gregory

Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha follows the artistic path of one of Ireland’s most fascinating historical women.

Sunday 22 March, 2020

The Irish For - Does Google Translate understand what 'A Cute Hoor' is?

By the 1990s, the phrase no longer appeared in inverted commas.

Tuesday 17 March, 2020

The Irish For - You’ll never catch our linguistic Lucky Charms

It’s St Patrick’s Day, in an extraordinary week, but Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha says there’s no harm looking back at the legend of the leprechaun.

Sunday 15 March, 2020

The Irish For: As we celebrate St Patrick's removal of snakes, what other animals have come and gone from Ireland?

Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha looks at the stories behind some of Ireland’s most famous animals

Sunday 8 March, 2020

The Irish For: 'Hope & History Rhyme' - the background to a much-quoted line

Joe Biden quoted Seamus Heaney after his Super Tuesday win in the US this week. Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha examines Heaney’s words.

Sunday 1 March, 2020

The Irish For: The rise of Fiadh, the third most popular girl's name

With Fiadh now in the top five baby names for girls, Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha looks at the origin of the name.

Sunday 23 February, 2020

The Irish For: 'Tis far from pizza and spaghetti we were reared

Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha asks what words for foreign foods tell us about Ireland.

Sunday 16 February, 2020

The Irish For: Why do so many Irish politicians start out as teachers?

Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha asks why we elect so many mĂşinteoirĂ­ to the Oireachtas.

Saturday 8 February, 2020

The Irish For: Time for two Irish romantic traditions - Leap Year proposals and the Skellig Lists

February 29 proposals are sweet, but the Skellig Lists were another story, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

Sunday 2 February, 2020

The Irish For: Was Dracula's name inspired by Gaeilge? Probably not, but coincidence can be lovely

There are plenty of linguistic similarities between Irish and other languages.

Sunday 26 January, 2020

The Irish For: CĂşpla focal for the happy couple

Wedding prayers and toasts can sound so beautiful in Irish, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

Sunday 19 January, 2020

The Irish For: Bond and BanrĂ­on EilĂ­s - a good collaboration?

Getting a singer like EilĂ­s to perform a theme song for an ancient spy saga is an attempt to exchange youth and relevance for prestige, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

Sunday 12 January, 2020

The Irish For: Toss a Word to Your Witcher, O'Language of Plenty

Viewers of Netflix’s ‘The Witcher’ will recognise some Gaeilge, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

Sunday 5 January, 2020

The Irish For: The word 'dote' was used in Britain before it came to Ireland - and that's ok

Word usage is like a conga line at a wedding – nobody thinks the person at the front is an artistic visionary, but the second and third people to join in create the legitimacy for others to attach themselves

Sunday 29 December, 2019

The Irish For: Reflecting on the decade Gaeilge and social media found each other

Let’s look back on some of the Irish words of the 2010s.

Thursday 26 December, 2019

The Irish For: Where old ghosts meet - the story behind On Raglan Road

Irish poetry is a story often told from the perspective of the unrequited lover, but rarely from one who goes in to the affair knowing it is doomed, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha

Sunday 22 December, 2019

The Irish For: I'm getting tired of the same Christmas pop hits - here are some alternatives

What harm if we learn some words as Gaeilge along the way?

Sunday 15 December, 2019

The Irish For: Cabbage in bed and fruit in a sock - a few lost rituals to help find a suitor

Here are some traditions described in an Irish poem that claim to help find a suitor.

Sunday 8 December, 2019

The Irish For: Don’t like Ulster Scots? Catch yourself on

When seeing Ulster Scots writing, many people are surprised by how much of it appears readily intelligible to them.

Sunday 1 December, 2019

The Irish For: How a fada can make all the difference

The Royal Bank of Scotland did not mention the meaning as Gaeilge of their online banking app BĂł.

Sunday 24 November, 2019

The Irish For: The enduring genius of artist Louis le Brocquy

The Irish artist’s painting Táin was sold for €102,253 at an auction earlier this week.

Sunday 17 November, 2019

The Irish For: Are Irish names really that difficult to pronounce?

We should look at names we don’t understand as something exciting to be figured out, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

Sunday 10 November, 2019

The Irish For: Notes on the naming of a still-contentious Irish-themed cocktail

In Ireland, the Irish Car Bomb is rarely called anything at all, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

Sunday 3 November, 2019

The Irish For: How did Irish céilí dancing end up with a waltz but no tango?

Dances and words travel between cultures in a similar way, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

Sunday 27 October, 2019

The Irish For: Rings, cloth and matchsticks - the secrets of the bairĂ­n breac

OĂ­che Shamhna (Halloween) is fast approaching, which means it’s nearly time for a slice of brack.

Sunday 20 October, 2019

The Irish For - Doomed tales of unrequited love in Irish literature

The tale of Úna Bhán and Tomás Laidir is one of many sad stories in Irish literature, writes Darach Ó Séaghdha.

Sunday 13 October, 2019

The Irish For: The varieties of cailĂ­n and the deductive Coleen Rooney

Coleen is derived from cailĂ­n, the Irish word for a girl, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

Sunday 6 October, 2019

The Irish For: Vegans, vegetarians and the battle of translating modern words

It’s easy to lose the wordplay on English words when translating into Irish.

Sunday 29 September, 2019

The Irish For: Cuddly mammals and furry predators

The Irish language has many names for different creatures in the wild.

Sunday 22 September, 2019

The Irish For: How has censorship affected Irish language books?

The banning of Irish language books was less frequent even though the authors produced writing which dealt with provocative themes.

Sunday 15 September, 2019

The Irish For: The weeds and wildflowers that bother and delight the countryside

Do you know your banshee thimbles from your blue hatreds?

Sunday 8 September, 2019

The Irish For: Cartoons, propaganda and the words children learn

How much do TV shows influence children’s pronunciation and phrases?

Sunday 1 September, 2019

The Irish For: Guns and Gaelic - the history of the right to bear arms

The Irish constitution drew inspiration from others, but did not include the right to bear arms.

Sunday 25 August, 2019

The Irish For: Rising rents mean many prospective tenants are giving Dublin a goodbye 'cĂ­os'

Designating certain areas far away from Dublin as Gaeltachtaí, and then denying them investment so they’d stay that way- was a dreadful mistake.

Sunday 18 August, 2019

The Irish For: How a familiar tale can help young bookworms become bilingual

Translating well-known books to Irish could be the best way to get pre-teen bookworms learning Irish.

Sunday 11 August, 2019

The Irish For: Teaching toddlers Gaeilge through the art of storytelling

Story-time is a great way to teach preschoolers pĂ­osa Gaeilge, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

Sunday 4 August, 2019

The Irish For: Bank holidays and LĂş, the god of August

In Irish, August is LĂşnasa, named in honour of the ancient god LĂş, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

Sunday 28 July, 2019

The Irish For: Maura Higgins has brought the word 'shift' to a new audience - but where does it come from?

Shifting is a regional use of a global term, so you can’t just search for the first recorded incidence – you have to look at context.

Sunday 21 July, 2019

The Irish For: An astronaut is a star-sailor, a comet is a paintbrush star

The calling to travel beyond the Earth owes itself to mythology as well as science, writes Darach Ă“ SĂ©aghdha.

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