Irish

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A language of Ireland

Alternate Names
Erse, Gaeilge, Gaelic Irish
Population

72,000 in Ireland (2006 census). Less than 20,000 L1 speakers (Salminen 2007). Population total all countries: 106,210.

Location

Western isles northwest and southwest coasts; Galway, part of Mayo, Kerry, Donegal, Meath, Cork, and Waterford. Also in Canada, United Kingdom, United States.

Language Status

6b (Threatened). Statutory language of national identity (1937, Constitution, Article 8(1)).

Dialects

Connacht (Western Irish), Donegal (Northern Irish, Ulster), Munster-Leinster (Southern Irish).

Typology

VSO

Language Use

Widely used as L2 in all parts of the country (2007). A number of children learn the language but the number is decreasing (2007). Also use English [eng] (Salminen 2007).

Language Development
New media. Radio programs. Grammar. Bible: 1685–1981.
Writing
Latin script. Latin script, Gaelic variant. Ogham script, no longer in use.
Other Comments

Taught as an official language in schools and encouraged by the government.

Also spoken in:

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