While most of the Irish population speak English as their first language about 1 million of Ireland's population can speak Irish, along with 20,000 Americans. This ancient Celtic language could be compared to Welsh and is relatively hard to master by native English speakers, especially if you aren't really exposed to it. It only has an 18 letter alphabet but is a beautifully complex language, so let's get on with it.

Disclaimer: some pronunciations have different local prononciations.

AIRNEÁNACH Pronounced "ARR-nen-ech"

This word is referencing the Irish tradition of "night visiting" where everyone is a local village would end up in one person's house for music and entertainment. It can also be used to talk about someone who works or stays up late.


POCLÉIMNIGH Pronounced “POH-claim-nee”

This word most closely means "frolicking" in English. It literally translates to "buck-jumping." Basically a joyous jump or excitable leap.


BOTHÁNTAÍOCHT Pronounced “BOCH-an-TI-ucht

There's no perfect translation in English for this word, but it basically means calling up a neighbor to just to chat or gossip.

DÉLÁMHACH Pronounced “TEE-lay-wah”

This word literally means "two-handed," but idiomatically means to "giving your best."


BÉALÁISTE Pronounced “bay-al-ASH-tuh

This is to seal a deal by drinking or toasting.


PLOBAIREACHT Pronounced “PLOH-ber-acht

You know when you're crying but trying to talk at the same time and nobody really understands you. Yeah, they have a word for that. And don't lie to me, you've all been here.


AITEALL Pronounced “AT-ell”

This is nice weather between two rainstorms. I don't know about you, but I think this is the perfect word for spring.


MAOLÓG Pronounced “MAY-loag

This word has quite a few meanings. It could mean filling a container past its top and still adding more, someone who sticks out from a crowd, or a hill in an otherwise flat landscape.


BACHRAM Pronounced “BOCH-rum”

This word means rambunctious behavior or a sudden violent downpour of rain.


RAGAIRE Pronounced “RA-gerra

This word is refering to someone who enjoys staying up late and talking into the wee hours of the morning.

So there you go, 10 Irish words to add to your vocabulary. Enjoy!