Irish Gaelic Sayings
Irish Gaelic Sayings
Listen to Irish language sayings and phrases

Seanfhocail // Irish Proverbs

Ireland Forever

Munster Éirinn go BráchErin guh brawk
Ulster Éirinn go BráchAir-in guh braack
Connacht Éirinn go BráchErin guh brawk

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What does Erin go Bragh mean?
The popular phrases "Erin go Bragh" or "Erin go Braugh" mean Ireland forever. It's the anglicised version of the Gaelic phrase which would be known to some Irish Americans (although its English spelling is quite meaningless). The correct spelling is "Éirinn go Brách".

May the cat eat you and the devil eat the cat

Munster Go n-ithe an cat thú is go n-ithe an diabhal an catguh nih-heh on cot hoo iss guh nih-heh on jowel on cot
Ulster Go n-ithe an cat thú is go n-ithe an diabhal an catguh nee-ha on cat hoo iss go nee-ha on jeowel on cat
Connacht Go n-ithe an cat thú is go n-ithe an diabhal an catguh nihs-heh on cot hoo iss guh nihs-heh on jowel on cot

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A country without a language, a country without a soul

Munster Tír gan teanga, tír gan anamteer gon chong-ga, teer gon on-um
Ulster Tír gan teanga, tír gan anamcheer gan changa cheer gan on-am
Connacht "Tír gan teanga, tír gan anam""teer gon chong-ga, teer gon on-um"

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Hunger is a tasty sauce.
Is maith an t-anlann an t-ocras.

A rainy day isn't a day for the children
Ní hé lá na báistí lá na bpáistí

Little is best if well done.
Is deas an rud an beagán ach é a dhéanamh go maith.

A beetle recognises another beetle
Aithníonn ciaróg ciaróg eile

He who loses his reputation, loses his shame.
An té a chaillfeas a chlú, caillfidh sé a náire.

May the bearer of the news be safe.
Gura slán an scéalaí


If you are as strong as an oak tree, death will still vanquish you.
Dá mbeifeá chomh láidir le crann darach, gheobhadh an bás an ceann is fearr ort.

Laziness is a heavy burden.
Is trom an t-ualach an leisce.

A (true) friend's eye is a good mirror .
Is maith an scáthán súil charad

There are two versions of/two sides to every story & (at least) twelve versions of every song.
Bíonn dhá insint ar scéal agus dhá leagan déag ar amhrán

A debt is still unpaid, even if forgotten.
Ní dhíolann dearmad fiacha.

A wren only has need for its nest.
Is leor don dreoilín a nead.

It isn't a trick until it is done three times.
Ní cleas é go ndéantar trí huaire é.

Beware of the anger of a patient man.
Coimhéad fearg fhear na foighde.

A light heart lives longest.
Maireann croí éadrom i bhfad.

It is the quiet pigs that eat the meal.
Is iad na muca ciúine a itheann an mhin.

Many a time a man's mouth broke his nose.
Is minic a bhris béal duine a shrón.

An empty sack won't stand
Ní sheasann sac folamh.

May God not weaken your hand.
Nár laga Dia do lámh

The north wind's heat or the cold of the south wind, means rain.
Teas gaoithe aduaidh nó fuacht gaoithe aneas, sin báisteach.

He who is not strong must needs be cunning!
An té nach mbíonn láidir ní folláir dó bheith glic

An awkward colt often becomes a beautiful horse .
Is minic a rinne bromach gioblach capall cumasach

There is no knowledge without unity
Ni heolas go haontios

A windy day is no day for thatching.
Ní hé lá na gaoithe lá na scoilbe.

A hint is sufficient for the wise.
Is leor nod don eolach.

He who marries money, marries a fool.
An té a phósfas an t-airgead, pósfaidh sé óinseach.

A row between friends is short lasting;, even if bitter it is never long.
Is neamhbhuan cogadh na gcarad; má bhíonn sé crua, ní bhíonn sé fada.

The craft comes from the head.
Is ón cheann a thagann an cheird.

As old as the mist and older by two.
Chomh sean leis an cheo agus níos sine faoi dhó.

Lose your reputation to regain it, but it is never the same.
Caill do chlú agus faigh ar ais é, agus ní hé an rud céanna é.

Health's doctor is sleep.
Dochtúir na sláinte an codladh.

Never take advice without a woman's guidance.
Ná glac pioc comhairle gan comhairle ban.

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