I have a particular interest in the fifth result generated by speil in the Fieldwork Archive. This speil is defined as “flock of birds” and was recorded by Alex O’Henley in South Lochboisdale. This sense of speil appears to have deep roots, given that speil “cattle, flock, herd” is recorded in Old Gaelic (dil.ie/38590). This word is rarely found in Irish, according to T. F. O’Rahilly in the article referred to under the headword speil in eDIL, but I suspect that speil in one of these senses lies at the heart of a loch-name in Mull. The name of this loch, a name which I analysed closely here at the University of Glasgow recently, can be found in Corpas na Gàidhlig. “Lochspeilbh” is the form recorded by Mull writer John MacFadyen in his collection of original songs, poems and readings first published in 1890 entitled An t-Eileanach.
Do you use the word speil in a sense recorded in Faclan bhon t-Sluagh or otherwise? If so, we’d love to hear from you on Facebook or Twitter.
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9 November 2017
Teine-aighir is a word that many Gaelic-speakers will know which means a ‘bonfire’, an outside fire used for celebrations.
Thursday 2nd November
About a month ago, I went around the amazing folk-life museum, Auchindrain, Argyll, with Àdhamh Ó Broin.