What’s in a name?...well, quite a lot actually
A NEW website providing the official Irish language names of towns, streets, rivers and mountains throughout Ireland still hasn’t quite got to grips with some of the Garden County place names as Gaeilge.
The site www.logainm.ie is designed to assist people who want to know more about the heritage, culture and geography of Ireland, wether they be students, teachers, journalists or translators.
A large percentage of the place names on the site are accompanied by archive records from the place names Branch of the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs. Place names can also be translated from English to Irish on the site as well.
Everything such as mountains, electoral districts, parishes, streets, townlands, lakes and post offices are included with translations, but it seems researchers still have a few gaps they need to fill with their Wicklow translations.
Of the 1,366 County Wicklow townlands listed on the site, well over half have yet to feature an Irish version of the name. This includes areas like Abbeylands in Arklow, Charlesland, Ballinabarny in Knockrath and Clonpadden in Arklow. According to the information given the official Irish language name of these townlands has yet to be confirmed.
It gets more confusing when the translation for Dunlavin is given as Dun Luain but there are no available translations for Dunlavin Upper, Mountain, Demesne East, Demesne West or Dunlavin Upper or Lower. The same applies to Hollywood.
Of course many place names throughout Ireland have more than one Irish name, and this may explain the reason why some translations have yet to be confirmed.
Some place names might be a little more difficult to track down, though. A translation for Pennycomequick Bridge in the townland of Ballinaskea still isn’t up on the site and may take some time to confirm.
Art’s Lough and Kelly’s Lough also await confirmation of their Irish names, though both would appear to be relatively easy to get to the bottom of.
However, despite these minor setbacks, logainm.ie is a work in progress and should still prove helpful to anyone seeking the authoritative Irish form of place names. The site is being developed by Fiontar, Dublin City University’s Irish-language teaching and research unit.