Celtic languages sites


CELT: Corpus of Electronic Texts. An ongoing project to place online texts relating to Irish literary and historical culture, including texts in Irish, Latin, Old Norse, Anglo-Norman French, and English.

Definition of Celtic Language. A page at WordIQ.com with the history and etymology of Celtic languages, and links to further information on the various languages in the family.

Celtica. Links to resources in the Celtic languages, including Scots Gaelic, Irish, Welsh, Manx Gaelic, Breton, and Cornish.

Celtic WebRadio sites. A very handy list of online radio stations, radio stations broadcasting online, and podcasts, for all the Celtic languages (including Manx and Breton).

Gaelic Dictionaries Online Links to dictionaries in Irish, Scots, and Manx Gaelic.

The Gaelic Home Page. Gaelic language, music, history, and culture.

Gaelic Languages Info. A collection of links to Gaelic sites.

Internet Resources for Irish and Celtic Studies. An extensive collection of categorised and annotated links to selected sites of interest for teachers and learners of Irish and other Celtic languages, put together by the School of Languages and Literature at the University of Ulster.

Irish and Scottish Gaelic Lessons. A text-only, but highly informative and remarkably detailed site with grammar-based lessons in Irish and Scots Gaelic for beginners.

Language Engineering Resources for the Indigenous Minority Languages of the British Isles and Ireland (LER-BIML). This site has linguistics resources for minority languages of the Celtic, and ex-Celtic, islands off the NW coast of Europe, the languages being:

  1. Cornish
  2.  Scottish Gaelic
  3.  Irish
  4.  Manx
  5.  Scots
  6.  Ulster Scots (Ullans)
  7.  Welsh

Most practically, the site has downloadable corpora in Welsh and Scots Gaelic.

LibreOffice Gàidhlig. The Open Source office applications suite with Scots Gaelic interface.

Slí Colmcille (St Columba Trail). A sort of online travelogue following the trail of the famous 9th Century Celtic monk, Columba, whose name appears pretty much everywhere in the Gàidhealtachd and Gaeltacht. Site text in English, Gàidhlig and Gaelge. Not to be confused with colmcille.net even though the content is tangentially related.

Search online Gaelic dictionaries. An English-language interface to search up to four online dictionaries - two Scots Gaelic, one Irish, one Manx. You can search by headword, word or substring.

Wikipedia: List of Celtic Language Media. A handy reference to online and broadcast audiovisual media in all Celtic languages: Irish, Manx, Scots Gaelic, Welsh, Breton, Cornish.


An Foclóir Beag. A searchable dictionary of Irish.

Daltaí na Gaeilge. A US-based organisation "dedicated to promoting and teaching the Irish language". The website has a wealth of resources for learners and existing speakers of Irish, including detailed grammar, common phrases and proverbs (with .wav audio clips), online exercises, and lively online fora. There's also a calendar of events worldwide related to Irish, and a small international directory of Irish teachers.

Interactive Irish on the Internet. Beginner's Irish lessons with Real Audio clips to help with pronunciation.

Irish Dictionary Online. A searchable and browsable English-Irish dictionary, with detailed results and example phrases. There's also a verb lookup as well with full conjugations, which is very handy.

Irish Resources in the Humanities (IRITH). An academic database of resources, containing a wealth of annotated links to selected resources related to the humanities in Ireland categorised by themes, including architecture, art, music, and of course Irish language.

. "The World's Irish language daily", with news, sport, articles, and more. The daily edition can be downloaded as a free PDF file for offline printing.

Raidió na Gaeltachta. The national Irish-language radio station based in the Gaeltacht (Irish-speaking region) on the Irish West coast. Some broadcasts are available as recorded RealAudio files, and the live webcast can be heard on the parent RTE site. Site text in Irish and English.

Radio Telefís Éireann Online. Includes RealAudio broadcasts in Irish.

Turas Teanga. An Irish language course from Ireland's national broadcaster Radio Telefis Éireann. There's a short online beginner's course comprising six lessons with video clips (Real format) and simple exercises, based on the book and DVD course of the same name. There's also a useful list of links resources for learners of Irish.

Wikipedia Irish. An Irish-language section of the contributory, open source online encylopedia.


Manx Archives. A large resource for Manx Gaelic, including articles in the language and online lessons.

Manx Dictionary. An English-Manx dictionary, with the nice added touch of a mini-concordancer demonstrating the use of terms in English/Manx.

Manx Language. The Wikipedia entry on Manx, with history, orthography, pronunciation, and links.

Ynsee Gaelg. Learn Manx Gaelic. A large 'one-stop-shop' portal for resources in Manx Gaelic, akin to the LearnGaelic.net portal for Scots Gaelic, containing lessons for all learner levels, news, information on Manx courses, events, links to other Manx resources, games, videos and more. The portal is heavily supported by State and private funders on and linked to the Isle of Man.

Scots Gaelic

Ainmean-Àite na h-Alba / Placenames of Scotland. The authoritative database of Gaelic placenames. You can search for an anglicised placename, eg Tyndrum, and get the Gaelic from which it's derived (Taigh an Droma) with notes on the Gaelic meaning (house of the ridge). The site is in Gaelic and English, the project is run by Bòrd na Gàidhlig, and has a heap of local council partners. Recommended.

Am Baile. A bilingual English/Gaelic site dedicated to "creating a digital archive of the history and culture of the Scottish Highlands and Islands", and chock-full of documents, images, and audio clips.

Am Bratach. A monthly magazine for the Scottish Highlands, with some articles in Gaelic.

BBC for Gaelic:

  • BBC Alba. The website of BBC Radio Scotland's Gaelic service, Radio nan Gaidheal, with news, features, and audio clips (Real format) of radio broadcasts.
  • BBC: Beag air Bheag. Multimedia Gaelic course for beginners, with audio clips (.ram), phrase books, self-assessment, and an active bulletin board for learners. Site available in Flash and HTML versions, site text in English.
  • Radio nan Gaidheal. BBC Radio Scotland's Gaelic service online, including real-time audio and 'listen again' feature to broadcasts in the previous seven days. Site text in Gaelic.

Clì Gàidhlig. The website of "the Gaelic access and promotion organisation", which also includes very useful resources for learners of all levels.

Colin and Cumberland. The website of the BBC Gaelic learners series for children full of Flash games, quizzes, animations, all with audio clips. Great fun for kids and regressing adults :)

Comhairle nan Leabhraichean Gàidhlig / Gaelic Books Council. Despite the name, this is an online and physical bookshop selling Gaelic-language books and journals. Although a commercial bookshop with no free materials for learners, this deserves inclusion in this list as it's the only bookshop, to my knowledge, dedicated to selling Gaelic-language books, including some obscure titles which are hard to find elsewhere.

Definition of Scots Gaelic language. A useful page at WordIQ.com with linguistic and historical information on Gaelic, plus its grammatical idiosyncrasies, pronunciation guides, and the differences between Gaelic and Irish.

Faclair Beag. Probably the best onilne Gaelic-English dictionary, built on the monumental Dwelly but with many modern terms and definitions. Lookup results include cross-references and many usage examples. A mandatory bookmark for the student of Gaelic. Recommended.

Faclairean Gàidhlig. A nice collection of annotated (in Gaelic) links to vocabularies and dictionaries. I particularly like the collection "Facail Ghàidhlig airson chuspairean àraid", Gaelic words for specific topics such as IT, the Scottish Parliament, days/dates, trees, music, and so on. A useful reference.

Foràm na Gàidhlig. A busy forum for native speakers and learners, with sections devoted to language, news, poetry, reference, grammar and other topics. Probably the most likely successor to the now extinct savegaelic.org forum.

Gaelcast. A podcast in Gaelic. As the 'casts' are in MP3 format you can play them on your computer with MP3 software, or download them to play on a MP3 player or even an iPod. The casts are quite up-to-date and not too hard to understand for this beginner, and provide some nice native speaker listening. Recommended.

Gaelic Council of Nova Scotia. Aimed at speakers, learners and would-be learners of Gaelic in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia, which has a large Gaelic diaspora going back to the Clearances. Site text in English and Gaelic.

Gaelic Google. The famous search engine with a Gaelic interface. This can be quite handy for learners as a 'rough and ready' concordancer, as well as for searching Gaelic resources.

Gaelic Orthographic Conventions. Although a seemingly dry document, this can be quite illuminating for learners and help to clarify spelling and pronunciation. For instance, knowing that "beul" used to be spelt "bial" helps in understanding why it's pronounced "bee-ul".

Gaelic Thesaurus. Surely the first of its kind, hosted at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig on Skye. The Gaelic-language interface only takes Gaelic search terms, but returns results in English and Gaelic. Recommended.

Glug anns an taigh. A fun Flash game, with audio, giving practice in simple vocabulary and grammar. Aimed at schoolkids, but could also be a fun diversion for beginner adult learners.

iGŕidhlig. A project by the very busy Michael Bauer, which aims to bring together, in wiki format, information on "all the existing tools and technologies [for Gaelic] with brief explanations of what they do and where you get them".

Island Voices / Guthan nan Eilean. This publicly-funded bilingual project, coordinated by Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, "aims to collect video slices of life and work in the Hebrides, primarily for language learners". This blog contains links to, and news about, video clips shot in the islands, including the "classic" Series 1 which are available for download from the POOLS website, and for viewing on Gordon Wells' YouTube channel together with many other interesting videos in Gaelic. Highly recommended (and not just because Gordon was my first Gaelic teacher). 

Làrach nam Bàrd. A BBC site dedicated to Gaelic-language poets of the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. Each poet has a section with background, topics, poetry, criticism and references. An excellent resource for students of Gaelic poetry, with video recordings of poetry, interviews and criticism in Gaelic. Poetry and site text in Gaelic. Recommended.

LearnGaelic.info. Lots of useful pointers and resources for learners of Gaelic at all levels, with a compendious list of books, organisations, teaching groups, courses, and much more. Run by Clì Gàidhlig. Site in English and Gaelic.

Learngaelic.net. A "a one-stop shop for anyone and everyone interested in learning Scottish Gaelic" aimed at all language levels, comprising texts, audio and video clips. The full Speaking Our Language course, for long the standard Gaelic course, is hosted on the site. The site is also chock-full of links to learning resources, including dictionaries, resources, and courses. Uniquely, the site hosts a Gaelic Thesaurus. Highly recommended.

Litir do Luchd-ionnsachaidh. The famous Letter to Gaelic Learners, broadcast weekly by Ruaridh MacIlleathain on BBC Radio nan Gaidheal. Each 'letter' consists of a story with linguistic help and vocabulary, and is available as a downloadable MP3 audio clip and a PDF transcript. The service is aimed at learners with some experience of Gaelic.

Am Mòd Nàiseanta Rìoghail. Website of the Royal National Mod, an annual festival of Gaelic language and culture held in Scotland. The site has some useful resources for learners, including a dictionary and some annotated Gaelic links.

SaveGaelic.org. A portal for resources for Scots Gaelic, including links to organisations, learning resources, dictionaries, and other portals. There's also up-to-date news, in English and Gaelic, on official initiatives to support the language. Perhaps the main feature of the site was the varied discussion fora on the language and current events, which has now sadly bitten the dust. Site text mainly in English, with some Gaelic.

Scotsman Gaelic news. Selected news stories from the Edinburgh newspaper The Scotsman in Gaelic, with RSS feed.

Scottish-English Dictionary. A section of Webster's Online Dictionary, this perhaps confusingly mixes Gaelic and Scots words (eg "dreich") together as "Scottish", though the Gaelic seems to far outnumber the Scots. Gaelic entries are single and compound words, occasionally small phrases, sorted alphabetically in pages. Non-searchable.

Scottish Gaelic College (Sabhal Mòr Ostaig) on the Isle of Skye. The site includes Gaelic lessons and lots of links to other Gaelic sites.

Scottish Gaelic first names. An alphabetical list of first names in Gaelic and their English equivalents (eg Margaret - Mairead).

Scottish Gaelic spell-checker. A handy add-on for the Open Source Firefox browser.

Scottish Gaelic verbs: Wikipedia. A very handy reference on Gaelic verbs, with conjugations and etymology.

Scottish Grammar Gaelic Wiki. A very handy and detailed reference for learners as grammar can be quite tricky. Sponsored by the Arizona Scottish Gaelic Syntax Project at Arizona University, USA, of all places.

Seachd: the Inaccessible Pinnacle Resource. A teaching resource for learners of Gaelic based on the beautiful Gaelic-language feature film Seachd. The resource comprises presentations and teachers notes aimed at school teachers and students aimed at primary and secondary level, but which would also be of use to intermediate learners of any age

Somhairle MacGill-Eain Online. A website dedicated to the life and works of the famous Gaelic poet from Raasay, administered by the Sorley MacLean Trust (Urras Shomhairle) and funded by a range of Gaelic bodies. As well as his poems, the site includes a Media Room with archive films and broadcasts including many featuring himself reading his own work. These recordings bring the poetry alive for those not fluent in reading Gaelic from text, Site text is in Gaelic and English.

An Stòr-dàta Briathrachais Gàidhlig. Gaelic-English dictionary hosted at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig. Interface in Gaelic.

Stuth ionnsachadh na Gàidhlig air an Eadarlìon. Scottish Gaelic learners' materials online. A useful, short list of briefly-annotated resources for learnings, including materials (such as Gaelic hangman) not usually found in other resource lists.

TAIC Gàidhlig Leaners Resource. Over 50 lessons for Gaelic learners of all levels, in HTML and PDF formats, with audio files, grammatical appendices, supplements, vocabularies, and a pronunciation guide. These are very much in the traditional didactic style, highly grammar-oriented. If you want to find rules on the formation of cases, verb tenses, prepositions, etc, this is the place to go. Recommended. NB: Users of proper browsers (not Microsoft's bugware Internet Explorer) may have problems with the opening menu, but this can be bypassed by a direct link to the lessons

Taigh na Gàidhlig. A forum for learners of Gaelic, the successor to the late lamented forum at savegaelic.org which went 'off air' in January 2006.

Tir nam Blòg. A nice (we)blog written entirely in Gaelic, with links to as many other Gaelic blogs as the author can find (hence the name).

Tobar an Dualchais / Kist 'o Riches. A project to archive and disseminate a wide range of oral history recordings from Gaelic and Scots speakers. There are thousands of recordings from native speakers, including stories, songs, music, poetry and factual information. The project is backed by a range of public bodies in Scotland, and based at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig. Recommended.

Wikipedia Gaelic. The famous contributory online encylopaedia with a Gaelic interface and Gaelic language articles.

Wikipedia - Scottish Gaelic language. A growing category of Wikipedia, with subcategories for adjectives, nouns, pronouns, numerals, and more, including nouns and phrases sorted by subject. Some categories are a bit patchy at the time of writing (March 2007) but the nouns and adjectives are quite full and can be used as a Gaelic -> English dictionary.

Wordpress anns a' Ghàidhlig. The famous blogging and content management system with a Gaelic interface.

YouTube: Gordon Wells. This YouTube 'channel' contains some 150 videos in Gaelic and English with which the Benbecula 'renaissance man' and polymath (and also my old Gaelic teacher) Gordon Wells has been involved in the making with the Island Voices project. The videos have been grouped into 8 separate playlists corresponding to the English and Gaelic Series One and Series Two Outdoors, Generations, and Enterprise categories. Click on "playlists" to get a non-stop "feature length" playback of all the videos in the category of your choice. For transcripts you'll still need to go to the Island Voices project site.


BBC Wales learning - learn Welsh. A good starting point for beginners to Welsh, with pointers to online multimedia Welsh languages courses, including the wonderfully-idiosyncratic (and often rude) Colin and Cumberland.

English-Welsh dictionary. Online bilingual dictionary, with audio clips and cross-referencing. Hosted by Trinity Saint David College, University of Wales.

Geiriadur Prifysgol Cymru: University of Wales Dictionary of the Welsh Language. Information and historical background on the Welsh Language dictionary project, plus sample pages from the dictionary and ordering information.

University of Wales Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies. The website of the internationally-renowned research centre, based at Aberystwyth. Site text in Welsh and English.

A Welsh Course. A text-based course in beginner's Welsh, and links to other Internet resources for Welsh.

Welsh-English dictionary. An online dictionary hosted by Trinity St David's College, University of Wales. Only simple no-frills definitions are returned. 

Links on this page last checked: 10/4/11

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