Newfoundland Erse (Erse:Gaeilge Thalamh an Éisc) is an extinct dialect o the Erse leid specific tae the island o Newfoundland, Canadae. It wis very similar tae Munster Erse, as spoken in the sootheast o Ireland, due tae mass immigration frae the coonties Waterford, Wexford, Kilkenny, Tipperary, an Cork.
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Erse settlement o Newfoundland
Seiven Inglis colonies wur established bi royal charter in Newfoundland atween 1610 an 1628, an Lunnon-based mercantile companies uised Celtic-speakin peasants tae settle each ane. The colonists wur primarily Welsh peasants but there wur also mony Erse peasants who usually ae spoke Irish. The leid wis commonly spoken in rural areas till the mid-20t century. There is evidence tae suggest that as mony as 90% o the Erse immigrants tae Newfoundland in the 17t an 18t centuries ae spoke Irish.
Court records show that defendants aften required Erse-speakin interpreters, which indicates that the dominant leid in mony areas o the Avalon Peninsula wis Erse rather than Inglis. Ecclesiastical documents bolster this case; for example, in the mid-1760s a Methodist missionary named Reverend Laurence Coughlan convertit virtually the whole North Shore tae Methodism. Observers creditit the success o his evangelical revival at Carbonear an Harbour Grace tae the fact that he wis fluently bilingual in Inglis an Erse. The Roman Catholic bishops also realized the importance o Erse-speakin priests - in letters tae Dublin, Bishop James Louis O'Donel requestit a Franciscan missionary for the parishes o St. Mary's an Trepassey, indicatin that it wis absolutely necessary that he shoud speak Erse.
A 2001 census report indicated that ten fowk in Newfoundland haed a Gaelic leid as their mither tongue PDF (8.25 KB). However, the report does no specify which leids ar includit in this figure. Scholars at Memorial University o Newfoundland concludit that Newfoundland Erse became extinct durin the 20t century.
- Newfoundland: The Most Irish Place Outside of Ireland, Brian McGinn, the Irish Diaspora Studies scholarly network
- Language: Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage, Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage Web site
- Newfoundland: The Most Irish Place Outside of Ireland
- Dictionary of Newfoundland English Online
- PDF (8.25 KB)