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How can I learn the Irish language?

(16 Posts)
PerverseConverse Mon 19-Nov-18 13:56:38

Sorry if this isn't the place to ask but couldn't find anything under the language topic.

How do I go about learning Irish? My Grandad's family was Irish but sadly he's been dead a long time and I can't ask him about his heritage. He was brought up in England so am not sure how far back I'd have to go to find family actually in Ireland. Maybe I should research my family tree...

For some reason, I've felt a pull towards Ireland for many years. I've never been as never had the money to but would very much love to. I've heard so many good things from friends who have visited and have read many books set in various places. I'm probably not explaining very well but there's just this feeling there.

It's time for me to do something for myself that's not work related or for a qualification and I've decided I'd like to learn Irish.

Any help greatly appreciated smile

oh4forkssake Mon 19-Nov-18 14:05:33

This would be a good place to start.

Good luck! It's not an easy language!

SmilingButClueless Mon 19-Nov-18 14:08:46

Have you tried Duolingo?

www.duolingo.com/course/ga/en/Learn-Irish-Online

Bombardier25966 Mon 19-Nov-18 14:12:33

Duolingo is excellent, but it is a long term commitment as you build up skills and vocabulary over time, with lots of practice to reinforce. Brilliant if that's what you're looking for though.

PerverseConverse Mon 19-Nov-18 14:20:42

Oooh thanks, will have a look tonight! I was passable at languages at school so not sure I'll do well but I'm willing to try.

beanaseireann Tue 20-Nov-18 15:45:31

If you are in UK contact
colaiste-na-gael.com
They run Irish language classes.
Sorry I can't do links.
Please visit Ireland.
Are you eligible for an Irish passport if Brexit happens ?

RavenWings Tue 20-Nov-18 15:47:35

Duolingo would be a nice little starter. Also Memrise. If you use Reddit, the /r/gaeilge subreddit would have loads of suggestions for books.

PerverseConverse Tue 20-Nov-18 16:48:42

Thanks everyone. I doubt I'd be entitled to an Irish passport. My irishness if you can even call it that would be be back to great grandparents. I wish my grandad was still alive to ask. No one left now on his side apart from my mum but she can only remember her grandma being Irish. I'll have to dig out the family history. His surname was Irish.

AmericanHousewifefan Mon 26-Nov-18 17:40:38

I was going to say Duolingo but others got there first.

Whereabouts was your family from Perverse? You never know someone here might know someone who knows someone grin

Mumatoo Mon 26-Nov-18 19:36:53

Conradh na nGaeilge are the Irish language association and have a presence in London and Liverpool. They are in the process of settting up Irish classes for children in the UK and there is already a monthly Irish playgroup in London. If you have young children that might be a sorf introduction.
Irish is a pretty tough language to learn. Maybe start of with some of the culture? There are many Irish centres that host different activities. A Ceili (set dancing) would be fun. If you’re sporty there are many GAA clubs with strong ladies Gaelic Football teams.
The Irish myths and stories of the Fianna are fascinating too.

honeyrider Mon 26-Nov-18 20:14:19

Irish is a very common surname in Kilkenny and also in Waterford but less so. I know of a lot of Irish's in south Kilkenny, when I moved back to Ireland I rented a house from an Irish in south Kilkenny.

Was your grandad born in the UK of Irish born parent/s or born in Ireland but moved to the UK when he was a young child?

PerverseConverse Mon 26-Nov-18 20:42:23

His surname wasn't "Irish" it's something else. No one has any idea where the family were from originally which is a shame. He was born here and there are links to Yorkshire as well as Ireland.

mathanxiety Mon 26-Nov-18 22:06:11

Some surnames are more common in some regions than others. If you did a DNA test you might unearth a few relatives.

I recommend if you decide to learn Irish that you start with conversational and spoken Irish and move to written afterwards. Develop your ear and eventually written Irish will be easier to approach.

When you get to written Irish you will find the spelling system is much more regular than English.

stayathomer Mon 26-Nov-18 22:11:25

There's a lot of school books that would help you start. Most of us in Ireland are rubbish at irish, we start at age 4 and by 18 can barely string sentences together and I think as a motivated adult you'll get on better. There are a lot of irish picture dictionaries, start with them then head into grammar land, best of luck and enjoy(I've only started appreciating irish as I got older!)

mathanxiety Thu 29-Nov-18 08:36:26

Don't start with schoolbooks. You will have no idea how to pronounce anything written there.

One reason so many Irish people are so bad at Irish is the way it is taught in school. It should be careful listening first, then speech.

Try to get to grips with proper pronunciation. Your tongue will be doing things it does not do when speaking English.

Here's a site you might find useful.
www.teanglann.ie/en/fuaim/_a

Start with listening.

beanaseireann Sat 01-Dec-18 19:17:23

As I wrote upthread, if you are in the UK Google colaiste-na-gael.com
They run classes for people like you. It should be fun.

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