Slainte! to a New EU Official Language?

Wednesday, July 21st, 2004

Slainte? That’s Irish, or Gaelic (henceforth we’ll use the latter) for the salutation made at a toast with alcoholic drinks – as in “Bottom’s up!” or “Here’s to you!” – and the Irish hope to be commemorating soon with a celebratory round of the finest Irish whiskey the addition of Gaelic to the EU’s corridors of power. As reported by the sharped-eyed Hana Lesenarová of the Czech daily Mladá fronta dnes (Ireland Desires Recognition of its Original Language in the EU), the Irish government decided this week – “unanimously,” whatever that means – to ask the EU to recognize Gaelic as its twenty-first official language. (Yes, it’s a little bizarre to be reading this news in Czech. I did consult the Irish Times, but didn’t find any mention – although much of that website is shut off behind pay-per-view.) (more…)

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