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How Would The Irish language Have Fared In An Ireland Fully Under British Rule To This Day?

General Urko

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As it says on the tin. I can't imagine that it would have fared any better than it did! Mind you, the curriculum might have been a bit more palatable in the schools for young people.
 


General Urko

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Indeed how would traditional Irish Music and dancing and Gaelic Games have done?
 

Cruimh

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As it says on the tin. I can't imagine that it would have fared any better than it did! Mind you, the curriculum might have been a bit more palatable in the schools for young people.
Indeed how would traditional Irish Music and dancing and Gaelic Games have done?
Your stream of consciousness OPs might look less thin if rather than adding a second post you used the edit function on the first one ....

so

As it says on the tin. I can't imagine that it would have fared any better than it did! Mind you, the curriculum might have been a bit more palatable in the schools for young people.


Indeed how would traditional Irish Music and dancing and Gaelic Games have done?
 

Breanainn

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If anything, Conradh was at its highest grassroots popularity precisely when Ireland was under British rule, and the subsequent decline came about because it abdicated responsibility to the State. Perhaps it would have fared similarly to Welsh,remaining a community language as an antagonistic reaction to UK domination? Of course, a Home Rule parliament would have been granted eventually after WWI, so it could have fared exactly the same at that point.
 

GDPR

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Possibly better than it has done, if we are to judge by the example of Welsh. But that would require sufficient numbers of people who actually spoke Irish as a home language.

It is surprising the number of Welsh luminaries, thoroughly dependent on English patronage to make their way in the world, who nevertheless grew up speaking Welsh as their first language. Richard Burton springs to mind.
 

McTell

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No

redneck

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Irish is undergoing a very very mini revival at the moment. Unfortunately it will probably remain a "hobby language" for most. Ach níl sé marbh.
 

redneck

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Economically Ireland is free of Westminster. But culturally we are not. Look to the North for the answer to the O.P. How is Irish doing up there? N.I is still ruled by London.
 

redneck

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As it says on the tin. I can't imagine that it would have fared any better than it did! Mind you, the curriculum might have been a bit more palatable in the schools for young people.
Northern Ireland has remained under British rule. So that is the answer to your question. The state of an Gaeilge in North.
 

duine n

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Possibly better than it has done, if we are to judge by the example of Welsh. But that would require sufficient numbers of people who actually spoke Irish as a home language.

It is surprising the number of Welsh luminaries, thoroughly dependent on English patronage to make their way in the world, who nevertheless grew up speaking Welsh as their first language. Richard Burton springs to mind.
Example of Welsh? Maybe!

Or try Gaelic in Scotland, Orcnian or Norn (Shetlandic), Scots and Cornish, not forgetting Manx. Then there's Jersais and Guernsais. Off course Sark and Aldernais are already "gone".

Yeah. The Brits would have come to the rescue, Dunkirk and all that!!
 

McTell

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Interesting that the 1901 and 1911 censuses included info on how many of us were speaking irish... by 1915 Douglas Hyde had been kicked out of Conradh by newbies who wanted to make the language a part of the independence process.


National Archives - About the 1901 and 1911 censuses
 

McTell

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In the censuses, you can select by "Irish" or "Irish and English", and the figs are:

Year 1901 1911

Irish 44,319 33,577

I&E 589,393 522,684


110-odd years later, more of us can "speak" I&E, but the 216 census had only 20,586 speaking irish every day. 8,068 census forms were completed in irish.
 

Glenshane4

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As it says on the tin. I can't imagine that it would have fared any better than it did! Mind you, the curriculum might have been a bit more palatable in the schools for young people.
Do you suspect that political nationalism thrived at the expense of cultural nationalism? Would the Welsh language decline if Wales were to become an independent State?
 

Talk Back

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In the censuses, you can select by "Irish" or "Irish and English", and the figs are:

Year 1901 1911

Irish 44,319 33,577

I&E 589,393 522,684


110-odd years later, more of us can "speak" I&E, but the 216 census had only 20,586 speaking irish every day. 8,068 census forms were completed in irish.
I don't know who you think you are fooling - you are not "us".
 

diy01

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110-odd years later, more of us can "speak" I&E, but the 216 census had only 20,586 speaking irish every day. 8,068 census forms were completed in irish.
That's incorrect. Around 75,000 people speak Irish every day outside of the education system in the South, according to the last census. That figure includes those who also speak it daily inside the education system.

Were you referring to habitual/daily speakers in the Gaeltacht only? 20k
 

diy01

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The problem with comparing the sociolinguistic situations of Irish and Welsh is that about 50% of the Welsh population were fluent speakers in 1901 -- in Ireland approximately 19% of individuals in the 1901 Census were recorded as Irish speakers. The vast majority of native Irish speakers by this time (more than 90%) were bilingual rather than monolingual or 'Irish-dominant' and many parents in Irish-speaking households were in the process of leading their families through the process of language shift.

Two other advantages Welsh speakers had was a much stronger tradition of print material in their own native language, going back centuries, including the Bible and few Roman Catholics. A weak print culture has really hurt Irish over the centuries, and people who actively wanted to attain literacy did so in English most of the time.
 

Roberto Jordan

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In the censuses, you can select by "Irish" or "Irish and English", and the figs are:

Year 1901 1911

Irish 44,319 33,577

I&E 589,393 522,684


110-odd years later, more of us can "speak" I&E, but the 216 census had only 20,586 speaking irish every day. 8,068 census forms were completed in irish.
While it is supposition I would suggest that those who wrote "irish & english" in 1901/11 did so , on average , from a position of greater justification for said selection than many in the contemporary returns. There are those who think that being able to semi-follow the commentary of a match on TG4 , while seeing the pictures for reference, translates to "conversational" understanding. ( and before any of teh anti-iorish brigade latch on with "hear hear" I have repeatedly noted how educational attainment in irish is , as far as I can see, no greater or worse than for other topics......not many leave second level fluent in irhs, but not many leave second level and can explain integration of a function either - and most certainly could d not once their LC cramming has faded from short term memory...)

In my own case my 1 of my 4 sets of great great parents returns were noted as "Irish "- which makes sense based on my grandmother who was , 80 years later , still far more flowing and lively in her conversation as gaelige than in english.
the other 3 all marked "irish and english". One of the 3 was filled it seems by a census officer , an RIC man. The other 2 by their own hands it appears. All lived in what are still Gaelteacht areas today and were native irish speakers. My grandparents , their kids obviously, were native speakers.

So on this anecdotal evidence alone I think the numbers from 01/11 show the state of the language at the western peripheries. with the exception of the small, but influential, groups of urban enthusiasts most of that 500 odd thousand were simply bilingual irish speakers. At that time , remember, there were still pockets of native speakers in places like west limerick, south west cork , tyrone and even, perhaps, the glens of antrim.

It is perhaps a reductionist view but the decline of irish since is , in my view, not a reflection of rejection or dislike but of the general failures of education and the endemic cultural view of education as a utilitarian economic tool. Many learn very little at "school" and many others learn just enough to get into / onto whatever career they are seeking .I type that not as some airy fairy believer in multi-major BA's for all, but a fairly hard nosed science and economics grad.......but and this is tangential, anecdotal and perhaps loaded with the bias of teh emigrant, ..my third/ fourth level grad Irish friends own , as far as I can see, far less books than those from elsewhere which I tend to think says a lot about folks.

On the topic....I really dont know.....continued decline......perhaps an earlier blooming of the Gael social movement among the new middle classes descended from rural stock. though one would have to look at the educational attainment of the upper working/ lower middle classes in both countries to figure if that would have been earlier or later......Like very many extracted from the west, with parent born in 40's/ 50's I was the first generation to go to college,- would this have happened sooner under the brits? I am inclined to think not.......but open to contradiction.
 

diy01

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While it is supposition I would suggest that those who wrote "irish & english" in 1901/11 did so , on average , from a position of greater justification for said selection than many in the contemporary returns. There are those who think that being able to semi-follow the commentary of a match on TG4 , while seeing the pictures for reference, translates to "conversational" understanding. ( and before any of teh anti-iorish brigade latch on with "hear hear" I have repeatedly noted how educational attainment in irish is , as far as I can see, no greater or worse than for other topics......not many leave second level fluent in irhs, but not many leave second level and can explain integration of a function either - and most certainly could d not once their LC cramming has faded from short term memory...)

In my own case my 1 of my 4 sets of great great parents returns were noted as "Irish "- which makes sense based on my grandmother who was , 80 years later , still far more flowing and lively in her conversation as gaelige than in english.
the other 3 all marked "irish and english". One of the 3 was filled it seems by a census officer , an RIC man. The other 2 by their own hands it appears. All lived in what are still Gaelteacht areas today and were native irish speakers. My grandparents , their kids obviously, were native speakers.

So on this anecdotal evidence alone I think the numbers from 01/11 show the state of the language at the western peripheries. with the exception of the small, but influential, groups of urban enthusiasts most of that 500 odd thousand were simply bilingual irish speakers. At that time , remember, there were still pockets of native speakers in places like west limerick, south west cork , tyrone and even, perhaps, the glens of antrim.

It is perhaps a reductionist view but the decline of irish since is , in my view, not a reflection of rejection or dislike but of the general failures of education and the endemic cultural view of education as a utilitarian economic tool. Many learn very little at "school" and many others learn just enough to get into / onto whatever career they are seeking .I type that not as some airy fairy believer in multi-major BA's for all, but a fairly hard nosed science and economics grad.......but and this is tangential, anecdotal and perhaps loaded with the bias of teh emigrant, ..my third/ fourth level grad Irish friends own , as far as I can see, far less books than those from elsewhere which I tend to think says a lot about folks.

On the topic....I really dont know.....continued decline......perhaps an earlier blooming of the Gael social movement among the new middle classes descended from rural stock. though one would have to look at the educational attainment of the upper working/ lower middle classes in both countries to figure if that would have been earlier or later......Like very many extracted from the west, with parent born in 40's/ 50's I was the first generation to go to college,- would this have happened sooner under the brits? I am inclined to think not.......but open to contradiction.
Good post.

I'm trying to think of examples from anywhere in the world where young people studying a language which is not their mother tongue (99% of) and is ALSO a minority or lesser-used language actually achieve fluency... it's no surprise to me that Irish has not been revitalised. The rate of decline has been slowed somewhat but the proportion of Irish-speaking households has continued to decline uninterrupted for many generations now.

There were still clusters of native speakers in the Glens of Antrim (and more so on Rathlin) in 1911 but almost none of the children born to the remaining adult speakers at the time were raised speaking Irish in the home, and most of the adults had ceased speaking Irish on a regularly basis.

There are recordings from 1931 of native speakers from Glenariff, however.

Doegen Records, Antrim recordings (Brian Mac Amhlaoibh, c. 1850-1941; Michael McKiernan, 1844-1935)
https://www.doegen.ie/taxonomy/term/22012

East Ulster Irish speakers, Antrim/GAEDHILGE AS OIRTHEAR ULADH
http://www.smo.uhi.ac.uk/~oduibhin/cainnteoir/aontruim.txt

Irish in the Glens
Language | Feis na nGleann
 

Fritzbox

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It is perhaps a reductionist view but the decline of irish since is , in my view, not a reflection of rejection or dislike but of the general failures of education and the endemic cultural view of education as a utilitarian economic tool. Many learn very little at "school" and many others learn just enough to get into / onto whatever career they are seeking .I type that not as some airy fairy believer in multi-major BA's for all, but a fairly hard nosed science and economics grad.......but and this is tangential, anecdotal and perhaps loaded with the bias of teh emigrant, ..my third/ fourth level grad Irish friends own , as far as I can see, far less books than those from elsewhere which I tend to think says a lot about folks.
Really? How do you explain so many Irish young people doing Arts and Humanities courses at third level - hardly the ideal ticket to a plum job?
 


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