Learn Islay Gaelic
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The Gaelic language . . . was introduced from Northern Ireland about the 5th century AD. At that time groups of Gaelic-speaking settlers from a small, semi-independent Ulster kingdom called Dal Riata. . . established themselves. . .[in] Argyll. Dal Riata in Scotland soon gained its independence and eventually became the dominant state which unified our nation."
Dòmhnall MacEacherna - The Lands of the Lordship, 1976, page 11.
Not only did the Scots of Dalriada, as it became known, become the dominant partners in the nation of Scotland, their Gaelic language effectively became the language of the infant Scotland, subsuming previous versions of the Celtic language. This would have been the language of Columcille or St Columba, after whom Ionad Chaluim Chille Ìle is named. Islay Gaelic has remained closer to its original roots of Irish Gaelic than the Gaelic of the Northern Hebrides and it is essential that this valuable dialect is preserved and maintained for years to come.
Ionad Chaluim Chille Ìle established Seanchas Ìle, an important oral history project, from 2005-2007, bringing language and stories to light through the publication of a book involving native Islay Gaelic speakers of the day. Below you will find a selection of audio extracts from the project archives, accompanied by transcriptions in Gaelic and translations to English.
A book was published in 2007 containing extracts from the archive in Gaelic with English translation. Copies are still available from the ICCI or from the Gaelic Books Council or other bookshops. ISBN 9781906134112.