Fuaimeanna na Gaeilge

Fuaimeanna na Gaeilge is a book about the sounds of Irish. Irish is an interesting language as far as its sounds are concerned. One of the interesting aspects is the high number of consonants the language has in comparison to other languages. This and other topics are described in the chapters of the book.

This book is a beginner’s course in phonetics, phonology and the sounds of Irish. Phonetics is a discipline in linguistics that studies the sounds of speech. In this book, we only cover articulatory phonetics, that is, the part of phonetics that studies how sounds are produced. We illustrate how consonants and vowels are described phonetically, using examples from the Irish language.

Phonology is a discipline in linguistics that studies the sound systems of languages. This book covers a subset of phonology that deals with phonemes, which are the smallest possible units of language that create meaning contrasts between the words of the language. Phonology is studied in the book by concentrating on phonetic transcription (the transcription of the sounds of speech) and phonemic transcription (the transcription of the sounds of languages). Again, the transcription techniques are demonstrated on examples from Irish.

Valuable feedback from readers has been incorporated into this new edition. The opportunity was also taken to develop the exercises and add new entries to the Glossary at the end of the book.

The author

Dr Brian Ó Raghallaigh is a lecturer in Fiontar, Dublin City University and is currently involved in the technical management and development of the ainm.ie, dúchas.ie, focal.ie and logainm.ie projects. He previously worked on the Irish synthesis project abair.ie at Trinity College Dublin. He has a background in computer science, linguistics and Irish. His Ph.D. thesis was on multidialect phonetisation for Irish, also at Trinity College Dublin.


Fuaimeanna na Gaeilge, second edition
Brian Ó Raghallaigh
170 pages
Cois Life 2014
ISBN 9781307434543
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Note. Although this website is bilingual in Irish and English, the book itself is in Irish only.