I love finding old Gaelic textbooks in the library and reading through them.  There are always interesting and entertaining passages, and I thought I’d share a few with you that I’ve come across:

“In some ways Gaelic is really much less dead than English, for the English language is so changed that were London people of 932 AD to return from the Beyond and attempt to converse with the London people of to-day, their English would seem to be some queer gibberish, but if … Inverness men of 932 AD were to return, every Gaelic-speaking Highlander would understand them…”

– Lady Elspeth Campbell 30th April 1932, in The Gaelic Phono-Grammar, Alistair MacLean, p. vi, 1932

“Many people… would like to learn Gaelic, yet they are deterred by the thought of having to wade through a grammar-book.  One can sympathise with them, for grammar is dry-as-dust to the ordinary man, but language is a living thing and, as far as possible, should be taught in a live, human way.”

– John Mackechnie, Gaelic without Groans, p. 5, 1962

“It is really not such a hard thing to learn Gaelic as some folk think.  It is quite true, I admit, that many people have spent years trying to master this beautiful old tongue and have failed. But why? Simply because they have tried to learn the language from a grammar-book and grammar is an abomination to 99 people out of 100.”

– John Mackechnie, Gaelic without Groans, p. 9, 1962


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