Is it ceili or ceilidh?

Is it ceili or ceilidh?

I prefer the second spelling, myself, but everyone who plays with me begs to differ. Could you shed some light on the issue?

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

If you’re in scotland it’s definitely ceilidh! Don’t know about Ireland though…

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

Yes, It’s both, but it depends which country you are in, or rather which Gaelic you are speaking. My Irish dictionary has it as Ceili. I would have sworn it was the other way about, but then, I have spent a few years in Scotland.

It’s Ceili with whiskey if you are in Ireland (or with Irish people)
and
Ceilidh with whisky if you are in Scotland (or with Scottish people)!
🙂

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

Yup, it’s "ceili" for Ireland. Technically, if you’re writing in English and use the Irish word for something, it goes in rabbit ears ("***") to show that it’s a different language, but probably only an editor or professional writer would even notice. 🙂

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

ireland: kilfenora ceili band tulla ceili band ……
scotland: benachally ceilidh band black rose ceilidh band ….

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

There is a chance that the idh spelling is an older spelling and the í comes from the standardisation of Irish in the 1950s when many words were shortened to facilitate teaching in schools, handy in some ways eg for kids but not in others as many of the proper pronunciations have been lost on new learners of the language, i think the most important message is to just enjoy the music no matter what way it is spelled.

Beir Bua,Cormac.

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

Replying to Innocent Bystander, forget about ‘rabbit ears’ (inverted commas) round the words, however spelt. Many foreign words find themselves naturalised into English (e.g. aficionado, fracas, junta), that is they become English words and are treated grammatically and typographically as English words. The only question is at what point does a foreign word become naturalised. I’d say ‘ceili’ and ‘ceildh’ are good English words (the inverted commas I am using throughout this posting are here for a different reason, namely to indicate the words being referred to as words rather than for their meaning). One test for this is to ask yourself what word is generally used in English for the plural of ‘ceili’? If the answer’s ‘ceilis’ , then that’s a good indication that the word has made the transition fully into English. I’d say that most English speakers would say ‘ceilis’ rather than ‘ceilithe’ (which I believe is the Irish-language plural, and whose pronunciation I can only guess at).

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

I would agree that "ceilidh" is not specifically Scottish, is just as Irish as "ceili", though not as common, and reflects the pre-standardization Irish spelling.

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

"céilí" is simply the caighdeán or modern standard spelling of "céilidhe" in Irish (Gaeilge). "céilidh" is the Scots Gallic (Gaidhlig) equivalent.

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

Sorry, meant to expand that a little. If you’re a fan of using pre-caighdeán spellings for Irish, then you should go for "céilidhe", not "céilidh".

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

Oraghalm is right - although if you look at refs to bands in older papers etc. (Aughrim Slopes, Austin Stack. Frank Lee etc) then you get an equal enough spread of ceilidhe and ceilidh (usually without fadas in fact). The modern spelling (just checked) needs a fada on the first E and the last I - céilí.

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

Without doubt oraghalm is correct. However, since both words have passed fada-less into modern Scots-English and Irish-English, I thought the original question was how are the Anglicized forms used? The notion that "ceilidh" is exclusively Scottish is not correct, as continuo makes clear.

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

Whatever the spelling, I like Johnny Cunningham’s definition that it is a drinking session set to music.

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Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

I always thought a session to be drinking set to music.

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

& in England ~ ceilidhs and ceilidh bands…

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

Except for the Irish Ceilidhe Club of Rhode Island, which has the older spelling incorporated into their official name, most around here spell it ceili.

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

My granddad formed the Moate Ceilidhe Band in 1932 Moate being in Westmeath Eire Ceilidhe being the pre 1947 spelling.

Re: Is it ceili or ceilidh?

Can anyone tell me about the use of the ð (eth) character in place of the dh in Ceilidh - It’s a now archaic form but if asked I’d have spelt the word céilið .