Archive for June, 2015

“Instant Gaelic” by Robert C Owen

June 9, 2015

Firstly, if anyone can teach me Gaelic instantly, I’ll write them into my will!  I have another book entitled, “Scottish Gaelic in Twelve Weeks”: a touch optimistic, that.

I’m a Gaelic novice.  I’m English and live in England so never encounter Gaelic speakers, and rely on things like “An Litir Bheag” for my practice.  I’m a great lover of languages, and quite determined: I speak reasonable Spanish, which I more or less taught myself, and have brought myself up to a level where I can happily converse.  Spanish speakers are not as hard to come by down here as the Gaelic ones!

“Instant Gaelic” is, for me, a really useful book.  Firstly, it contains four short stories, a play, a poem and song.  Each one has both Gaelic and English text.  This is brilliant.  You can get the meanings by just flipping a couple of pages: much quicker than looking up every other word in a dictionary.  The stories are not aimed at any particular level of expertise in Gaelic; they’re challenging without being impossible.

The other, really useful, element of this book is its sections on grammar.  Short sections focus on things like: male genitive nouns; female genitive nouns; adjectives in the cases of male and female genitive nouns; all tenses and forms of regular verbs; and more besides.  These grammar sections are presented as drills: you practice them by repetition, so you’re learning by rote.

For me, a very useful book that I think will really help me to make progress.  Good luck finding a copy! Suas leis a’Ghaidhlig!

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