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Re: Irish Celtic verses Scottish Celtic

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  • Keina MacGhriogair
    Thank you for your explanation, it does help, and my appologize for saying Celtic when you are correct I meant Gaelic. Another question, keeping in mind your
    Message 1 of 3 , Aug 27, 2007
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      Thank you for your explanation, it does help, and my appologize for
      saying Celtic when you are correct I meant Gaelic.

      Another question, keeping in mind your information stated that the
      upper part of Ireland dilect and the southern part of Scotland being
      similar. I have been researching the spelling of Ghriogair, I was
      told this is Scotish Gaelic, but I have also been told no that is
      Irish Gaelic, I suppose it may depend if you are asking a Scot's or
      and Irishman? Sorry a little silly and a dash of frustration!

      Keina

      > First, note that "Celtic" is a language family, not a language --
      > "Celtic" is on a par with "Germanic" or "Romance", not any specific
      > language within those language families. See my article "Celtic
      Rant"
      > at <http://medievalscotland.org/postings/celticrant.shtml> for more
      > discussion.
      >
      > Anyway, you seem to be using "Celtic" here to mean specifically
      > Gaelic and not any of the other languages in the Celtic language
      > family (which include Welsh, Cornish, Breton, Celt-Iberian,
      Gaulish,
      > and probably Pictish -- two of which, Welsh/Cumbric and Pictish,
      were
      > spoken in medieval Scotland in addition to Gaelic and so are just
      as
      > "Scottish Celtic" as Scottish Gaelic).
      >
      > You're right that there was a lot of interaction between Gaelic
      > Scotland and Gaelic Ireland, with people moving back and forth
      (more
      > commonly individuals and families than clans, however), even though
      > politically the two were separate from fairly early on in the
      Middle
      > Ages. (This is similar to how there was a lot of interaction and
      > movement of people between Scotland and England even though they
      were
      > politically separate.)
      >
      > Linguistically, despite the political divisions, both Irish and
      > Scottish Gaels (and Manx) considered themselves to all speak the
      same
      > language into the 17th century, and share a common literary
      heritage,
      > and modern linguists largely agree that the different kinds of
      Gaelic
      > were dialects of the same language (Gaelic) until around 1700 when
      > Irish (Gaelic) and Scottish Gaelic are considered to have become
      > different languages.
      >
      > That said, the difference between being two dialects of a the same
      > language and being two different languages is not a precise,
      entirely
      > linguistically determined categorization -- when two languages are
      > closely related the difference usually comes down to political and
      > social considerations as much as linguistic ones. In the case of
      > Gaelic, the main thing that changed around 1700 was the written
      > language changed to reflect the national dialects more, instead of
      > the ideal for written Irish and Scottish Gaelic being exactly the
      > same, and that added to nearly a millennium of political separation
      > (and a few other considerations) tipped the scales in favor of two
      > separate languages instead of dialects of the same language. Then,
      > when Irish underwent major spelling reform in the 20th century, the
      > differences between written Irish and Scottish Gaelic became even
      > more pronounced (and it became much more difficult for Irish and
      > Scottish Gaels to read the others writing).
      >
      > However, if we leave written forms aside, orally/aurally it is
      > probably more accurate to speak of a dialect continuum from the
      south
      > of Ireland to the northern-most Western Isles, with dialects being
      > more similar to their closer geographic neighbors than more
      > geographically distant dialects, even if the closer neighbor is
      from
      > the other language and the more geographically distant dialect from
      > the same language. So, speakers of the southern-most dialect of
      > Scottish Gaelic will have an easier time understanding speakers of
      > the northern-most dialect of Irish Gaelic than the northern-most
      > dialect of Scottish Gaelic (because geographically and
      linguistically
      > the former will be closer to their own dialect than the latter,
      even
      > though the former is considered a different language and the latter
      > the same language as their own).
      >
      > For a basic timeline of Gaelic in Scotland, as well as resources
      for
      > historical and modern Gaelic, see
      > <http://medievalscotland.org/scotbiblio/languages.shtml#gaelic>
      >
      > Let me know if anything I've said isn't clear!
      >
      > Sharon
      > --
      > Sharon Krossa, PhD - skrossa-yg@...
      > Resources for Scottish history, names, clothing, language & more:
      > Medieval Scotland - http://MedievalScotland.org/
      > Shopping Online? Help support! -
      http://MedievalScotland.org/patron/
      > The most complete index of reliable web articles about pre-1600
      names:
      > The Medieval Names Archive - http://www.s-gabriel.org/names/
      >
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