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Bunús na Gaeilge - Basic Irish Language

There is no other way to revive Irish than for a crowd of people to spread it.
- Douglas Hyde

Note: The spellings and pronunciations used are based on Aideen's own natural use of Connemara Irish but they have been kept simple, so as to be understood where there are differences in the language.
For example, the word 'feicfidh' is used only in Connemara Irish; in Leinster, Ulster and Munster the word is 'cífidh'. There are two pronunciations; Leinster/Munster - kee-fee; Ulster - chee-fee.

The biggest problem for people whose native language is English is that the soft 't' and 'd' are in Irish, but not in English; it's difficult to 'reproduce' them in writing. Where I use 'th' and 'dh' here, they are best achieved by putting your tongue gently behind your front upper teeth."

Click here for our words & phrases Index.

Lesson 56: All Work and No Play

This lesson focuses on words and phrases related to job titles and finding employment.

It would appear we made a mistake and did this lesson twice. Nevertheless, they are different. So, until we decide what to do about it, click here for the other version of the same topic: Occupations.

Phrase: Jobs and Work
Irish: Postanna agus Obair
pusth-uh-nah ah-gus ub-ir

Word: Job/Position
Irish: Post

Word: Engineer
Irish: Innealtóir

Word: Doctor
Irish: Dochtúir

Word: Nurse
Irish: Banaltra

Word: Lawyer
Irish: Dlíodóir

Word: Teacher
Irish: Múinteoir

Word: Journalist
Irish: Iriseoir

Word: Secretary
Irish: Rúnaí

Word: Veterinarian
Irish: Tréidlia

Word: Publican
Irish: Tábhairneoir

Word: Barmaid/Barman
Irish: Cailín/Fear Tábhairne
kahl-een/fahr thawv-err-neh

Word: Thatcher
Irish: Tuíodóir

Word: Labourer
Irish: Oibrí

Word: Plumber
Irish: Pluiméir

Word: Electrician
Irish: Leictreoir

Word: Farmer
Irish: Feirmeoir

Word: Salary
Irish: Tuarastal

Phrase: Application form
Irish: Foirm iarratais
fwirm eer-ah-thish

Word: Interview
Irish: Agallamh

Word: Employee
Irish: Fostaí

Word: Employer
Irish: Fostóir

Phrase: Employment Agency
Irish: Gníomhaireacht Fostaíochta
gneev-err-ukhth fuss-thee-ukhthah

Word: Résumé/Curriculum Vitae
Irish: Athchoimriú

Phrase: Every person to his (her) own job
Irish: Gach duine lena cheird féin
gakh dhin-eh leh-nah kherdj fayn

Phrase: He is unemployed at the moment
Irish: Tá sé as obair faoi láthair
thaw shay oss ub-irr fwee law-hir

Phrase: She has been promoted to a higher position
Irish: Tá sí tar éis áirde i gcéim a fháil
thaw she thahr aysh aw-ir-djeh ih game ah aw-il

Phrase: I am going to apply for that job at the hospital
Irish: Táim chun chur isteach ar an bpost sin ag an oispidéal
thaw-im khun kur is-tjiahkh err an busth shin egg ahn us-pidjail

Phrase: You must apply yourself to your work
Irish: Ní mór duit dúthracht a chaitheamh led' obair
nee more gwitch dhooh-rukhth ah khah-huv ledh ub-ir
Phrase: What are the perks (benefits) that go with that job?
Irish: Cad iad na buntáistí a ghabhann leis an bpost sin?
kahdh eedh nah bun-thaw-ish-thee ah ghow-un (hard 'g') lesh on busth shin

Phrase: Be certain to dress smartly for the interview
Irish: Bí cinnte gléasadh go slachtmhar le h-aghaidh an agallamh
bee kin-tcheh glays-ah guh slahkhth-wahr le heye on ah-gahl-ahv

Phrase: I've sent my Résumé/Curriculum Vitae to several agencies
Irish: Táim tar éis m'athchoimriú a sheoladh chuig ghníomhaireachtaí éagsúla
thaw-im thahr aysh m'ah-khwem-roo ah hih-oh-lah khwig gneev-err-ukhth-thee ayg-soo-lah

Phrase: What responsibilities did you have in your last position?
Irish: Céard iad na freagrachtaí a bhí id chúram sa phost seo thart?
kayrdh eedh nah frahg-rukh-thee ah vee idh khoo-rum sah fussth shuh hahrth?

Phrase: What salary do you expect?
Irish: Cén tuarastal atá i gcoinne agat?
kayn thoor-ahs-thahl ah-thaw ih gwinn-yeh ah-ghuth?

Phrase: I failed the interview
Irish: Theip orm san agallamh
hep urm sahn ah-gahl-ahv

Phrase: I start the new job next week
Irish: Tosnaím sa phost nua an tseachtain seo chugainn
thuss-nee-um sah fussth no-ah on tchokh-thun shuh hug-inn

Note: This caught our eye. Yes, we know it isn't gaeilge, but it is fascinating. If nothing else, it is certainly language (and Irish language as well.)
by Bernard Share
...for all 'decent skins', 'crawthumpers', horse-protestants', 'hard chaws' and 'strong farmers'...a dictionary of Irish slang that's as amusing as it is informative.
Click here for Slanguage

For More Basic Irish please click here: Irish Index

Image: Gaeilge Beo from
All Posters and Prints.


Thu, Jul 9, 2015
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Irish Grammar
by Noel Mogonagle

This book is excellent for beginners who are wanting a book that gives basic grammar without all the extra information that confuses beginners. The book is well laid out, with information very easy to find. Amazon Reviewer

Here is a good follow-on to our words and phrases.
Click for Irish Grammar.

Irish - English
English - Irish

Note: We have yet to see a dictionary with phonetic pronunciations for each word. We suspect this is partly due to the variations. Providing for all four 'green fields' (Connacht, Leinster, Ulster and Munster), would be cumbersome at best. Still, someone may do it some day. Until then, these are all very good and recommended. Serious students will have more than one; they are inexpensive.

These two (either or both) are the handy-references needed to go with a good grammar or 'teach yourself' course.
We would need both (and some other help) if found wandering in a Gaeltacht late at night.
Amazon has an offer of either one combined with a grammar for a reduced price.
Click for Collins Gem
Click for Oxford Pocket.

Children's Irish Dictionary
by Hippocrene Books

As a total beginner in Irish, this has taught me quite a few words. The illustrations are beautifully done, and best of all, each word is given a rough English spelling of its pronunciation. Edited from an amazon review.
Click here for Kid's Irish Dictionary.

Wicked Irish
by Howard Tomb

While I wouldn't recommend you use many of these phrases, this is a terribly funny book. I picked it up after leafing through it at the store and finding phrases about sheep and inns and the hazards of driving in Ireland without insurance. Each little section starts out innocuously enough, then quickly degenerates into truly funny comments. If you like Monty Python or BlackAdder, this will really make you laugh. If you liked the Father Ted tv show, this little book will make you keel over giggling. Ah, go on, ya eejit, buy it already! Amazon Reviewer
(We want this, you may see a few on these pages - watch out).
Click for Wicked Irish

Teach Yourself Irish Complete Course
by Diarmuid O'She & Joseph Sheils

An easy-to-use program for learning on your own, or can be used as supplemental material for your classes. These new editions have been thoroughly revised and updated to include the engaging dialogues and helpful exercises you have come to expect from the Teach Yourself series.
Click for Teach Yourself

Learning Irish
by Micheal O'Siadhail

The Best Irish Course Available! Three years ago I decided to learn Irish, and in the next two years I bought three different courses. The first two were simply useless, (that's the obvious reason for my buying new courses) you could learn some phrases, but not construct sentences yourself. Learning Irish, on the other hand, is an excellent book, which gives you a thorough vocabulary and grammatical knowledge. It consists of 36 lessons, all containing vocabularies, grammar instructions, texts and excercises. Amazon Reviewer.

Click for Learning irish


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