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Language Family: Celtic

  • Apr 20, 2012
  • 06:36 PM

The literary festival breathing life into the Welsh language

Daily Mail
History has tried hard to consign the Welsh language to the linguistic scrapheap. But the launch of Dinefwr Literature Festival packs another punch in the ancient tongue's fightback. The first-ever bilingual Welsh festival will be held over three days from June 29 to July 1 at the National Trust’s rather lovely Dinefwr Park and Castle, in the heart of the Carmarthenshire countryside.
  • Apr 19, 2012
  • 07:41 PM

Gaelic for toddlers plan welcomed

John O'Groat Journal
“I have no problem with this at all. I have never been against Gaelic – although I did oppose the bilingual Gaelic road signs,” Mr Flear told the Caithness Courier. “The perception in some quarters is that if you are against bilingual road signs then you are anti-Gaelic but that is not the case. I am pleased people want their children to be immersed in the Gaelic language.”
  • Apr 16, 2012
  • 04:37 PM

Labour pulps 5,000 Cardiff council election leaflets criticising Welsh language

Labour has pulped 5,000 copies of a Cardiff council election leaflet because it contains a resident’s comment that they “can’t apply for most jobs in Wales because you need to speak Welsh”. Last night an angry row erupted between Plaid Cymru and Labour, with Plaid’s deputy council leader Neil McEvoy accusing Labour of seeking to inflame the language issue.
  • Apr 16, 2012
  • 04:03 PM

Plaid Cymru’s Image 2: Welsh-speakers inhabit a networked community

Cynog Dafis / clickonwales
There is no mystery about the close identification of Plaid Cymru and the Welsh language. The party, and to a great extent the home-rule movement which has through devolution given us the ‘civic national identity’ which both Ken and I celebrate, sprang almost exclusively from a Welsh-speaking community acutely aware of its vulnerability amid the rapid change of 20th Century Wales.
  • Apr 14, 2012
  • 01:53 PM

Ni Riada is Sinn Fein's Irish language officer

Joe Leogue / The Corkman
Party leader Gerry Adams TD said that the appointment of Liadh Ní Riada, daughter of famous composer Seán O Riada, was proof that the party "was committed to the revival of the language" and that he was looking forward to seeing the positive results of her work.
  • Apr 12, 2012
  • 01:23 AM

Twitter Gets Help from SLU Prof on How to Deal With Indigenous Tweeters

Nicholas Phillips / Riverfront Times
If you're one of the five remaining speakers of "Yuchi" -- a near-extinct Native American language in Oklahoma -- your tweets will look insane, even to those within your linguistic group. That's because whenever you type in the "@" character, which is a part of your alphabet, Twitter will (wrongly) think you're trying to refer to a different user, such as @Joe_Smith.
  • Apr 11, 2012
  • 04:10 PM

Welsh-only education will damage economy, say business leaders

Rachael Misstear / WalesOnline
A row has erupted over plans to phase out teaching pupils in English at a primary school in a Welsh language stronghold. Business leaders say the move could hinder the economy. Ysgol Gynradd Aberteifi is the last remaining dual language primary school in the Cardigan area, with the nearest school teaching in English more than 20 miles away in New Quay.
  • Apr 11, 2012
  • 03:54 PM

Donegal's radio pioneer celebrates historic anniversary

Michelle Nic Phaidin / Donegal Democrat
The boundaries of the Gaeltacht dictate that the rich linguistic qualities of Irish in each region differ from that of the other, affiliated with the different streams of language that has evolved over hundreds of years is a difficulty for one region to understand that of another. According to Timlín, Raidió na Gaeltachta has played a vital part in dulling the linguistic boundaries and differences between each dialect and helps each region understand another enhancing a common understanding to a rich, complex language.
  • Apr 11, 2012
  • 01:02 AM

Waiting for Beckett with Irish in Focus

Irish Times
Yeates believes what Mouth on Fire is doing harks back to the days of the Damer theatre, when great Spanish, Russian and even Shakespearean works were staged in the Irish language. “And let’s not forget, Beckett himself did not write in English. He wrote in French, as that was the language he was most connected to.”
  • Apr 10, 2012
  • 10:43 PM

Bursary supports Gaelic-language education in Scotland

Halifax News Net
Nova Scotians interested in improving their understanding and use of the Gaelic language will be able to further their study with a new bursary program funded by the government of Scotland and administered by Gaelic Affairs.
  • Apr 10, 2012
  • 05:49 PM

Trilingual kids who will never be tongue-tied

Iva Pocock / The Irish Times
MY FIRST experience of trilingual children was living in Sri Lanka in 2005, where many of the kids I met spoke Tamil, Sinhala and English. I was astounded when I realised that they could also read and write in these languages, a feat requiring knowledge of three completely different scripts – the Roman alphabet, Tamil script with more than 200 letters, and Sinhalese which has more than 50 characters.
  • Apr 10, 2012
  • 05:35 PM

Members united as language group marks anniversary

This is South Wales
Since 1998, Menter Cwm Gwendraeth has been working strategically on the basis of the Welsh Assembly and Carmarthenshire Council's community planning framework, by ensuring the Welsh language is instrumental in the development of every project.
  • Apr 09, 2012
  • 12:03 AM

'Welsh is a wonderful gift': speakers of the language relish new support

Steven Morris / The Guardian
In her first speech as commissioner, Meri Huws spoke of her vision of a Wales where speakers had the confidence to use the language and trust in the law to rectify any prejudice. Her initial focus will be to make sure that the Welsh government and public bodies fulfil their obligations to offer services both in English and Welsh.
  • Apr 08, 2012
  • 08:44 PM

Declan Lynch: Overwhelmingly, we Irish prefer the lie

Declan Lynch / Irish Independent
In the recent census, 1.77 million people said that they were able to speak the Irish language. I have written that sentence four times, no doubt bringing back happy memories of your schooldays, but mainly to ensure that the magnitude of the statement is fully absorbed. Because this is not just a lie. All official statements pertaining to the Irish language are to some extent a lie, but it is the extraordinary size of the lie in this case which requires special attention.
  • Apr 08, 2012
  • 12:57 PM

Bilingual fairytale

RUTH Blindell, a teacher at the Bunscoill Ghaelgagh in St John’s, has published her first book in celebration of the Manx language, culture and mythical legends. Finlo and the Fairy Kings follows the Little People (fairies) as they battle to save the beautiful Dhoon Glen from the destructive plans of Mr Pratt, a cliff full of seagulls and a squadron of ruthless rodents.
  • Apr 08, 2012
  • 02:59 AM

Councillors agree to Gaelic language plan

Will Clark / John O'Groat Journal
COUNCILLORS have agreed to the second-generation Gaelic language plan which will be implemented in the Highlands over the next four years. The new plan, which will run until 2016, will set out the Highland Council’s aims and ambitions to promote the language.
  • Apr 04, 2012
  • 08:53 PM

Speakers of France’s endangered languages demand recognition

The Observers
Tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets all over France this weekend to defend the country’s minority languages. These have been spoken in different regions of France for centuries, but are slowly dying off. With the first round of the French presidential election just three weeks away, speakers of endangered tongues are trying to get candidates to take their concerns seriously.
  • Apr 04, 2012
  • 04:19 PM

Hazel's remarkable work in Argentine Welsh community

This is South Wales
WHEN Hazel Evans's lifelong dream of visiting Patagonia came true in the 1990s, she had a feeling she would be back. But what she didn't realise was how often she would be back and how large her connection to the Argentinean region would grow. For Mrs Evans, a Welsh teacher now living in Llandybie, has celebrated a decade since the opening of a dedicated Welsh centre in Esquel — a centre which she raised off the ground.
  • Apr 04, 2012
  • 03:32 PM

Making sense of the census

Pól Ó Muirí / Irish Times
Other speakers in today’s Tuarascáil also highlight the need to provide extra support for young students learning the language in the Gaeltacht and outside it. Muireann Ní Mhóráin of COGG, an organisation for Irish-language and Gaeltacht education, worries that the teaching of Irish is not working while Gael-Linn head honcho, Antoine Ó Coileáin, wonders if the stats will be properly incorporated into any future language planning.
  • Apr 04, 2012
  • 02:10 PM

Business and the Welsh language

Chris Kelsey / WalesOnline
While the Welsh Language Board’s (WLB) efforts have borne fruit as some 500 new voluntary schemes have been adopted, there is scope for the new Commissioner to persuade more businesses to actively embrace the language and to be prepared to offer Welsh services to their customers.
  • Apr 03, 2012
  • 05:49 PM

Minister Launches Líofa In Carntogher
The initiative encourages people to learn Irish with the goal of becoming fluent by 2015. The Minister said: "I welcome this opportunity to visit Carntogher and see how the Irish language is thriving. This is a living example of a rural community embracing Irish at grass roots level and creating a vibrant Galetacht area.
  • Apr 02, 2012
  • 10:56 PM

50,000 people claiming for regional languages rights in France

Celtic News
Kemper/Quimper - 10,000 in Quimper, 20,000 in Toulouse, thousands in the Pays Basque, in Alsace, in Catalonia, is an unprecedented success for a protest march, aimed at requiring due rights for regional languages. It was a beautiful day, Odet river banks full of flowers, Breton bagadoù bands marching, a truck decorated with unilingual French road signs draining lots of young people on board...
  • Apr 02, 2012
  • 03:33 PM

Welsh Language Commissioner starts work with new powers (video)

Nick Powell / ITV News
The Commissioner has what the Welsh Government calls 'strong enforcement powers' to protect the rights of Welsh speakers to access services in the language and she can launch an official investigation into any interference in people's freedom to speak Welsh to one another. She will start with powers over many public services, not necessarily provided by government or local councils but by businesses licensed by them.
  • Apr 01, 2012
  • 08:21 PM

Enclave of "extinct" Gaulish speakers discovered in France

Ouelières, France - A small enclave of speakers of the ancient Gaulish language has been discovered in a remote village in the Auvergne region of France, astonished linguists and anthropologists announced on Sunday at a special conference in Paris.

Gaulish, one of the Celtic languages, was thought to have died out over a thousand years ago, surviving only in fragmentary inscriptions and scattered French loanwords. It was gradually replaced by the Latin language brought by Roman soldiers and settlers, which in time evolved into French. Its closest relatives are Welsh, Irish and Scottish Gaelic, and Breton, endangered languages spoken on the fringes of Europe....
  • Mar 31, 2012
  • 06:48 PM

Dewi Sant church in Toronto looks to Wales for minister's job

BBC News
The only remaining Welsh language church in Canada is advertising for a new minister in newspapers in Wales. Dewi Sant Welsh United Church in Toronto, Ontario, is believed to be one of the few churches in North America still holding services in Welsh.
  • Mar 30, 2012
  • 05:39 PM

Protesters support regional languages

The Connexion
Nicolas Sarkozy has stated that “If you love France you don’t propose ratifying the regional languages charter”. Marine Le Pen is also among those opposed. Eva Joly, François Bayrou and François Hollande favour the idea. The views of Front de Gauche candidate Jean-Luc Mélenchon are, however, “convoluted and confusing”, according to a Quimper organiser, Patrig Herve, who said he hoped the party would send a representative to clarify its stance.
  • Mar 29, 2012
  • 06:58 PM

Census 2011: 1.77m say they are able to speak Irish
THE NUMBER OF people who say they are able to speak the Irish language has fallen to 1.77 million, according to the results of Ireland’s most recent census. This figures represents 41.1 per cent of respondents – a slight decrease from 41.9 in 2006.
  • Mar 29, 2012
  • 02:56 PM

Pencae will become a Welsh language institution

Ian Hughes / North Wales Weekly News
A PRIMARY school is to be transformed into a Welsh language school. The Welsh Government has approved plans that will see Ysgol Pencae on Graiglwyd Road in Penmaenmawr become a predominately Welsh language institution in September 2013. Governors say the change from a dual stream to a Welsh medium school will serve to enrich the town, broaden horizons and create future job prospects for pupils.
  • Mar 29, 2012
  • 01:20 PM

France a 'rogue state' on regional languages

Simon Hooper /
Despite its precarious situation, Breton has no formal status in France. It is not offered as a language of education in the public school system, the state makes no provision for regional language media, and it is not used in government or public services. Once home to a vibrant multitude of tongues, the monolingualism of modern France is enshrined in article two of the country's constitution, rooted in the revolutionary principles of 1789, which reads: “The language of the Republic shall be French.”
  • Mar 28, 2012
  • 07:49 PM

Hogan moves to plug Irish language gaps in Household Charge law
ENVIRONMENT MINISTER Phil Hogan has moved to defend the State against a legal challenge to the household charge laws by producing Irish-language equivalents of the legislation. The High Court granted leave two weeks ago for a challenge to the legislation on the basis it had not been published in Irish, the official language of the country.