Landmark archive of 10 million Gaelic words launched

Landmark archive of 10 million Gaelic words launched

Issued: Wed, 05 Nov 2014 15:02:00 GMT

Researchers have completed the first phase of the world’s most extensive digital archive of Scottish Gaelic texts as part of a landmark project to revolutionise access and understanding of the language to public around the world.

The Digital Archive of Scottish Gaelic (DASG) project is already the most comprehensive publicly accessible reference point for the Gaelic language and culture, having been worked on by researchers from Celtic and Gaelic at the University of Glasgow for the past eight years.

The DASG project has two main outputs:

  • Corpas na Gàidhlig is a searchable online database bringing together full texts dating from the Twelfth Century to the present day. Together they make up a corpus of almost 10 million Gaelic words, which is expected to grow to up to 30 million words over the course of the project. 
  • The Fieldwork Archive contains over 22,000 headwords taken from speech recorded in Gaelic-speaking Scotland and Nova-Scotia during the 1960s, 70s and 80s. It uniquely describes traditional Gaelic life and society and many of the headwords are accompanied by magnificent hand-drawn illustrations.

Together, these two resources will provide fingertip access to the riches of Gaelic language and culture and make it much more accessible to a world-wide audience.

DASGCorpas na Gàidhlig will also provide the textual basis for a linked project involving five universities around Scotland. Faclair na Gàidhlig will produce a historical dictionary of Gaelic, a resource for Gaelic comparable to the Oxford English Dictionary and the Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue, both of which provide a historical lexical reference for their respective languages. Partners in the Faclair na Gàidhlig project are the universities of Glasgow, Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Strathclyde and Sabhal Mòr Ostaig UHI.

Rob Ó Maolalaigh, Professor of Gaelic at the University of Glasgow and Director of DASG, said: “The Digital Archive of Scottish Gaelic provides a unique and powerful web resource for students and researchers of Gaelic around the globe, which will transform the way research is carried out on Gaelic language, literature and culture. Having access to a large database like this will enable us to see new patterns in the way the language has been used over the centuries and how it continues to be used to this day. This resource will lead to the development of new pedagogical and technological resources for the language.”

Vice-Principal and Head of the College of Arts, Professor Murray Pittock, said:  “As a leading centre for Gaelic and Celtic Studies, the University welcomes the online publication of ground-breaking DASG resources, which will provide scholars and Gaelic communities in Scotland and abroad with a magnificent learning and research resource to promote Gaelic and its significance internationally.”

DASG IIProfessor Boyd Robertson, Chair of the Steering Committee of Faclair na Gàidhlig, and Principal of Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, said: “We are delighted that the first phase of DASG is now online based on established expertise at Glasgow.  Corpas na Gàidhlig and related software development will revolutionise lexicographical methodology in Scotland.  The Fieldwork Archive will also be tremendously important to the dictionary in that it contains words not recorded elsewhere.  We can look forward confidently to a future in which Gaelic will have a dictionary compiled on historical principles linked to a digital corpus of the language.  Together, they will enable full understanding of the Gaelic language and culture for generations to come.”

Leading scholar in the history and culture of the Highlands, Professor Hugh Cheape from Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, said: “As a student of Scottish Gaelic with a specific interest in the lexis and in material culture, DASG offers a resource on a scale hitherto unimaginable without a lifetime's reading and cross-referencing.”

DASG was established in 2006 and is funded by the British Academy, the University of Glasgow, Faclair na Gàidhlig, Bòrd na Gàidhlig, the Scottish Funding Council, the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the Economic and Social Research Council.

DASG is available at http://www.dasg.ac.uk.

 

Media enquiries: nick.wade@glasgow.ac.uk / (+44) 0141 330 7126


 

Tasglann chudromachde 10 milleafacal Gàidhligair a chur air bhog

Tha luchd-rannsachaidh air a’ chiad earrann de dh’obair a chrìochnachadh air an tasglainn dhidseataich as motha a th’ ann de theacsaichean Gàidhlig, mar phàirt de phròiseact tionnsgalach a tha ag amas air cothrom is tuigse air a’ Ghàidhlig a thabhann dhan phoball air feadh an t-saoghail.

Tha Dachaigh airson Stòras na Gàidhlig (DASG) aithnichte mar-thà mar am na pròiseact as iomlaine agus is ioma-chuimsiche far am faighear fiosrachadh a thaobh cànan is cultar na Gàidhlig, is luchd-rannsachaidh bho Roinn na Ceiltis is na Gàidhlig aig Oilthigh Ghlaschu air a bhith ag obair air thairis air na h-ochd bliadhna a dh’fhalbh.

Tha dà phrìomh thoradh aig DASG:

  • Corpas na Gàidhlig, a tha na stòr-dàta air-loidhne a ghabhas a rannsachadh is e a’ tarraing theacsaichean bhon 12mh linn chun an là an-diugh ri chèile. Còmhla, tha iad a’ dèanamh an-àirde corpas de cha mhòr 10 millean facal Gàidhlig, is dùil ann gum bi seo a’ fàs gu timcheall air 30 millean facal thairis air a’ phròiseact.
  • Tasglann Obair-trusaidh, Faclan bhon t-Sluagh, anns a bheil còrr air 22,000 ceann-fhacal air an togail bho chainnt an t-sluaigh a chaidh a chlàradh an dà chuid ann an Alba agus ann an Alba Nuadh anns na 1960an, na 1970an agus na 1980an. Tha e gun samhail ann a bhith a’ tarraing dealbh de bheatha is choluadair dualchasach na Gàidhlig, is cuide ri mòran dhe na ceann-fhacail tha dealbhan eireachdail làmh-dhèanta.

Còmhla, tha an dà ghoireas seo a’ tabhann fìor-chothrom air beartas cànan is cultar na Gàidhlig is gam fosgladh do luchd-cleachdaidh air feadh an t-saoghail.

Bidh Corpas na Gàidhlig na bhunait theacsail airson pròiseact co-cheangailte anns a bheil còig oilthighean air feadh na h-Alba an sàs. Bidh Faclair na Gàidhlig a’ toirt faclair eachdraidheil Gàidhlig gu buil, aig am bi, thathar an dùil, an aon inbhe is cliù is a tha aig na faclairean mòra a gheibhear airson Beurla (Oxford English Dictionary) agus Albais (Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue), is an dà chruinneachadh sin a’ tabhann stòr-fiosrachaidh eachdraidheil, leicseachail dha na cànanan fa leth aca. Tha Oilthighean Ghlaschu, Obar Dheathain, Dhùn Èideann, Srath  Chluaidh agus Sabhal Mòr Ostaig UHI nan compàirtichean ann am Faclair na Gàidhlig.

Thuirt Rob Ó Maolalaigh, Ollamh na Gàidhlig aig Oilthigh Ghlaschu, agus Stiùiriche DASG: “Tha Dachaigh airson Stòras na Gàidhlig a’ tabhann goireas air-loidhne cumhachdail is gun samhail do dh’oileanaich is luchd-rannsachaidh na Gàidhlig air feadh an t-saoghail, is bidh e a’ fìor-atharrachadh an dòigh anns am bi rannsachadh air a dhèanamh air cànan, litreachas is cultar na Gàidhlig. Agus cothrom againn a-nis air stòr-dàta cho mòr is cho farsaing, bidh comas againn pàtranan ùra fhaicinn is a lorg anns na dòighean a chaidh an cànan a chleachdadh thairis air na linntean agus mar a tha e ga chleachdadh an-diugh. Bidh an goireas seo gar stiùireadh is gar cuideachadh ann a bhith a’ leasachadh ghoireasan teagaisg is teicneolasach ùra airson a’ chànain.”

Thuirt an t-Ollamh Murray Pittock, Iar-Phrionnsapal agus Ceannard Cholaiste nan Ealain aig Oilthigh Ghlaschu: “Mar aon de phrìomh aonadan na Gàidhlig is Ceiltis, tha an t-Oilthigh a’ cur fàilte is furan air foillseachadh nan goireasan ùra air-loidhne aig DASG, a bhios a’ tabhann goireas ionnsachaidh is rannsachaidh air leth do sgoilearan is coimhearsnachdan Gàidhlig an dà chuid an Alba agus thall thairis airson ìomhaigh na Gàidhlig, agus cho cudromach is a tha i, àrdachadh gu h-eadar-nàiseanta.”

Thuirt an t-Ollamh Boyd Robasdan, Cathraiche na Comataidh Stiùiridh aig Faclair na Gàidhlig, agus Prionnsapal Sabhal Mòr Ostaig: “Tha sinn gu math toilichte gu bheil a’ chiad earrann de DASG a-nis air-loidhne, is e stèidhichte air sàr-eòlas ann an Glaschu. Bidh Corpas na Gàidhlig, agus leasachaidhean ann am bathar-bog a thig na chois, a’ cruth-atharrachadh mhodhan-obrach leicseachail an Alba.  Cuideachd, bidh an Tasglann Obair-tursaidh, Faclan bhon t-Sluagh uabhasach cudromach dhan fhaclair leis gu bheil faclan ann nach eil idir air an clàradh ann an tùsan eile. Tha sinn a’ coimhead air adhart gu misneachail ris an àm a tha ri teachd far am bi faclair ann dhan Ghàidhlig a tha stèidhichte air prionnsapalan eachdraidheil is iad ceangailte ri corpas didseatach a’ chànain. Air an toirt ri chèile, bidh iad a’ toirt comas do na ginealachan ri thighinn làn-tuigse air cànan is cultar na Gàidhlig a ruighinn.”

Thuirt an t-Ollamh Ùisdean Cheape, sgoilear aithnichte ann an eachdraidh is cultar na Gàidhealtachd, aig Sabhal Mòr Ostaig: “Mar sgoilear na Gàidhlig, is ùidh shònraichte agam ann am facail uile a’ chànain agus cultar dùthchasach, tha DASG a’ tabhann goireas aig ìre a bha do-bheachdachaidh roimhe seo gun a bhith a’ cur seachad rè do bheò a’ leughadh is a’ tar-sgrùdadh.”

Chaidh DASG a chur air bhonn ann an 2006 is fhuair e maoineachadh bho Acadamaidh Bhreatainn, Oilthigh Ghlaschu, Faclair na Gàidhlig, Bòrd na Gàidhlig, Comhairle Maoineachaidh na h-Alba, Comhairle Rannsachaidh nan Ealain is nan Daonnachdan (AHRC), agus Comhairle an Rannsachadh Eaconamaich agus Shòisealta (ESRC).

Gheibhear DASG aig http://www.dasg.ac.uk.