About Irishionary.com

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The are 5,057 Irish headwords in the dictionary, with 6,005 validated word meanings.

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What this is

Irishionary.com is a free online collaborative dictionary. It's written, edited and moderated by the online Irish language community.

It could be called a wiki dictionary of sorts. It's available through an Irish language interface at FocloirGaeilge.ie and through an English language interface at Irishionary.com.

The aim is for simplicity. Yes, that means that it doesn't intend to be a full-on dictionary. The decision for simplicity encompasses this whole project.

Simplicity makes this project stronger. It means empowering the Irish language community to build our own dictionary. It means easy quick searches of the dictionary.

(If you're interested, the development mantra has been strongly influenced by the book “Getting Real”.)

What this is not

Irishionary.com is not a replacement for print dictionaries. It is not developed by dictionary people. It is built by contributions by people like you, who have a real interest in the life of the language.

Why does it exist?

Imagine this: there are about 139,000 people in Ireland who speak Irish at least once a week outside of the education system (census 2006 figures). The Irish government wishes to see 250,000 regular speakers by 2028 ( Cuv, New York: March 2008).

In that context, imagine the situation where the Irish government does not have an openly available dicitonary for the language community. Yes, it does publish print dictionaries through An Gm. But it does not make its database of words freely available to the Irish community.

Against this background, Irishionary.com aims to be a useful dictionary of the modern online Irish community. Built by the modern online Irish community. And available to that community.