Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Gaelic on the Isle of Skye

In the 1921 census about 74% of the Skye population listed Gaelic as their first or only language.  By 1971 that had dropped to about 50%.  In 2001 it had dropped to around 30% distributed unevenly across the island - there are some regions where it is quite common and others where almost no one speaks or understands Gaelic.  Virtually all road signs are in both languages, as in this example (English in black, Gaelic in green) which offers some clues as to pronunciation of this old and baffling language.

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