Mòine / Peat-Working

Sir E. Scott Junior Secondary School
Harris, Tarbert
1. Ag ullachadh na talmhainn airson mòine a bhuain
mòinteachgeneral area, moorland, where peat is found.
blàr-mònadharea comprising several peat-banks.
poll-mònadhpeat bank.
sgaoilteacharea over which peat is spread to dry (sgaoilteach mhath, droch sgaoilteach, etc.)
feanntachturf covering the peat (riasg) which is removed when turfing (a’ feannadh).
rùsgditto [i.e. feanntach], but not commonly used.
a’ fosgladh puill (ùr)opening a new bank.
a’ taomadh a’ phuilldraining a bank.
a’ glanadh nam polltaking home the peats left on the banks through the winter, ready for the new season’s cutting.
a’ sussadh(‘u’ pron. as in English ‘cutting’) undercutting the turf (feanntach [q.v.]), esp. when turf is difficult to cut. “Sus romhad e.”
a’ striachdadhcutting a line parallel with edge of bank about 2' in, as the first operation in ‘feannadh’ [q.v.].
a’ feannadhturfing.
a’ rùsgadhturfing.
a’ glanadh a’ charcairecleaning up the turfed peat (riasg) before cutting.
a’ càradh na feanntaichreplacing turfs neatly inside the bank (broinn a’ phuill) when turfing.
an carcairethe peat (riasg) exposed by the ‘feannadh’ [q.v.].
grabhag(grabhag mònadh) a small peat-bank (common in Harris where peat is running out).
làrach cruaichesite of a previous stack.
beul ( bial) a’ phuill[pron.] the face of the bank.
aghaidh a’ phuillthe face of the bank.
aodann a’ phuillthe face of the bank.
iochdar a’ phuilllower end of the bank.
broinn a’ phuillinside of the bank.
druim a’ phuilltop of the bank, to which the ‘face’ is at right angles.
ceann a’ phuillend (usually upper) of the bank.
2. A’ buain na mònach; na h-innealan a chleachdar; ainmean nam fàdan, etc.
iarunn mònadhpeat iron or cutter.
taraisgeirpeat iron or cutter (not commonly used).
cas an iaruinnthe handle [of the peat iron].
stehp (Eng. ‘step’)step of the peat iron.
casachanstep of the peat iron.
smeachanstep of the peat iron (not in common use – probably a Lewis importation).
sàil an iaruinnthe ‘heel’ of the [peat] iron into which the ‘cas’ [q.v.] fits.
sgianthe cutting blade, the lower edge (faobhar) of which cuts the inner and larger plane of the individual peat, while the ‘sàil’ [q.v.] (at right angles to the ‘sgian’) cuts the narrower edge.
sgiath[See sgian]
eighepeat-iron (given by only one pupil – probably from a dictionary!).
spaidspade – used for turfing.
mòine chruaidh, dhubhhard, black type of peat.
mòine bhànspongy type of peat.
mòine chòsachspongy type of peat.
mòine chailceachpeat mixed with clay.
mòine phranncrumbly, brittle, black type of peat.
riasgsedge or peat-moss, which is cut and dried for fuel.
barrad (barr-fhàd)the first layer or tier of peat cut from a peat bank.
a’ chiad fhàdthe first layer or tier of peat cut from a peat bank.
an dara fàdthe 2nd layer [of peat cut from a peat bank].
an treas fàdthe 3rd layer [of peat cut from a peat bank].
an corrad (corr-fhàd)the outside or first peat cut in each layer.
an caoranthe lowest layer cut [from a peat bank].
fàd a’ chaorain[See an caoran]
fàd a’ mhorghainwhere the last layer [of peat] lies on gravel.
fàd morghain[See fàd a’ mhorghain]
fàd feanntaichwhere a bank has been opened on the site of a previous bank; such a ‘fàd’ is usually crumbly or spongy in the middle, where it often breaks.
gearradh eadar bhun is bhàrrcutting without previous turfing, where turf is very thin or non-existent.
fear an iaruinn (fear air an iaruinn)man operating the cutter.
fear a’ phuill (fear anns a’ pholl)man taking and throwing out peat as cut.
(fear air an iarunn ’s fear anns a’ pholl )
a’ leagail (an iaruinn)cutting (i.e. operating the ‘iarunn-mònadh’ [q.v.]).
a’ cur a machthrowing out and spreading the peat.
a’ caththrowing out and spreading the peat.
gàrradhpeats arranged along edge of bank in a kind of dyke.
fàd a’ ghàrraidhthe tier of peat which is put in the ‘dyke’ – usually the second, but this varies according to the number of tiers.
[fàd]“Fàd na mo làimh, fàd air mo bhròig, ’s fàd air an iarunn”. Used by the person throwing out when the person cutting is going too fast.
feitheamh an fhòidsaid when the cutter is too slow.
3. A’ tiormachadh na mònach
a’ togail (na mònadh)lifting, i.e. setting peat up to dry (general term).
coilleagthree or four peats on end, leaning against each other, with another placed flat on the top to form a small stack – in the initial lifting. (Tha i fhathast anns a’ choilleig.)
a’ coilleagachadhlifting (i.e. into “coilleag”s).
rùdhan (plural rùdhain)larger stack than ‘coilleag’ – 2nd stage in the drying process: perhaps 3 to 4 ‘coilleags’ heaped together.
ag ath-rudhadheither re-forming the original ‘rùdhain’, or putting two or more together to make a still larger heap.
a’ cruachadhmaking medium-sized stacks on the banks and ‘slating’ the peats to throw off the rain, if the peats are being left on the banks for some time. Such stacks may sometimes be ‘thatched’ (air an tughadh) with turf (‘sgrathan’).
4. A’ cruachadh na mònach
a’ grìomhadhbuilding the outside of the peat-stack.
an grìomhadhthe outside ‘wall’ so build [sic].
a’ tughadhthatching the top of the stack (with ‘sgrathan’).
cruach ghrìomhaigha stack with the outside built (air a grìomhadh).
sgoranbuttress of turfs or divots (ceapan) usually placed one on each corner of a stack. “Cuir sgoran rithe.”
5. A’ toirt na mònach dhachaigh; an cliabh, etc.
ag aiseagwhere peats are cut on an island, ferrying them to the mainland.
a’ cur chun an rathaidcarrying peat from banks to road for transportation home.
a’ cur gu rathadcarrying peat from banks to road for transportation home.
a’ lìonadhfilling peat-bags ready for carrying to the road.
a’ tarruing (tarrainn) na mònadhgetting the peat home (by lorry etc.).
gàdagrope used to support bag of peats being carried on the back. (cf. “gàdag ’s a dhà cheann sgaoilte”, metaphorically of assumptions based on dubious premises. Probably a rope of heather originally and if the two ends were ‘loose’ i.e. free to run, the rope would be unsafe.)
6. Seòrsachan mònach
mòine chruaidh dhubh etc.already given in Section 2.
ath-mhoin (ath-mhoine)(pronounced ‘amhoinn’) last year’s peat still on the bank.
mòine thaiseallachslow-burning or long-lasting peat.
mòine gharbhpeat cut very big.
[urpull]Tha a’ mhòine air a dhol ’na h-urpuill (leis an uisge). When peat is swollen with rain. Geàrr ’na h-urpuill i – cut it big. (Cf. urpull de bhalach – a big lump of a boy.)
7. Faclan eile
obair iaruinnamount of work expected of a team of two people in a day, or a certain number of yards which had to be cut before wages could be claimed.
bha dà iarunn aige muighidiomatic usage: “He had two teams out peat-cutting for him”, i.e. 4 people.
eallacolbits of peat – akin to ‘caorain’ – which dry on the face of the bank, or in gashes and holes in the bank, and used to be gathered, of old, when stocks of peat were running low.

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