Tag Archives: irish gaelic

K is for Knowledge

K is for Knowledge, and for the bits and pieces that I would like to confidently Know so as to call myself a Pagan. I would like to confidently be able to name all the Ogham letters; to identify most common UK trees; to learn more about the Celtic deities.

A customer brought a leaf into work and I was able to identify it as a Sweet Chestnut, which made me very happy. I had a bit of an advantage, since I walk to the castle regularly and have taken time to identify the trees that line the path. There are Beech, Hazel, Elder and Oaks at the edge of the woodland, and I take time to greet them all if I’m walking along there. I’m at the first bit of knowledge – having the bits and pieces of recognition without being able to put it into wider patterns. Someday I’d hope to know more about individual tree species: which kinds group together, what weathers they prefer, what kinds of landscapes they tend to appear in, which animals prefer them, what plants are found in conjunction with them, etc. But that’s for a time when I can confidently point to a tree and think, “Yes, that’s an [n].” I’d like to do the same for plants, wild flowers and birds.

Ogham is going well. I can confidently name the letters of the first and second aicme, get a little mixed on the third, and still rely on “All Of Us Eat Icecream” as my mnemonic for the fourth.

I think that learning some Irish Gaelic might be a good next step. I’ve never done well with learning other spoken languages, but I hope that the things I’ve learned during my linguistics degree might make it a little easier – things like the phonetic alphabet. Diacritics are a bit of a mystery for someone whose first language is English, but if there are regular patterns to them then I hope I’ll get the hang of it.

Much, much more next week, when I finally get to the Ls and can talk about language.

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