Fáilte (Welcome) to Wikibooks Irish, an open source primer and resource for the Irish language.
The Irish Language
Irish (Gaeilge) is the primary official language of the Republic of Ireland, and the traditional language of the island of Ireland. It is related to other Celtic languages of Europe, and especially to other Goidelic or Gaelic languages, such as Scottish Gaelic.
English speakers sometimes call the language "Gaelic" or "Irish Gaelic". Properly speaking, "Gaelic" is a general term for a group of languages. Scottish Gaelic is so-called to distinguish it from Lowland Scots, a separate language also spoken in Scotland. The name used in the Republic is simply Irish.
About This Book
This book contains lessons in the Irish language, as well as grammatical and historical information. The book is organized into three units.
Unit One is an introductory unit for absolute beginners. It focuses on pronunciation, sentence structure, and basic points of grammar. Unit One will introduce you to some core vocabulary. Most language concepts will be introduced and explained entirely in English, except for concepts such as séimhiú (lenition) and úrú (eclipsis), where the English terms would be equally unfamiliar.
Unit Two will provide a comprehensive overview of Irish language and grammar, including review and further coverage of the concepts introduced in Unit One. It will include a more comprehensive general vocabulary. Irish terms will be used for language concepts, with English reminders where appropriate. Students with some experience in Irish may want to start with Unit Two.
Unit Three will provide more in-depth coverage of language used in specific subject matters. Grammar will be reviewed briefly, but the focus will be on specialized vocabulary and terminology. Language concepts and some basic prompts will be given in Irish only. Unlike the lessons in Units One and Two, which are designed to be studied in a specific order, lessons in Unit Three will be grouped by subject matter and can be studied in any order, using the foundation built in Units One and Two. Students with confidence in their Irish may use Unit Three to learn the words they need to discuss specific subject matter.
This book is a work in progress. If you are interested in contributing, please visit this page's discussion page, or the lesson planning page, and join in!