A Woven Silence: Pronounciation Guide

My second memoir  A Woven Silence: Memory, History & Remembrance was published by 
The Collins Press in September 2015

Inspired by the story of my relative Marion Stokes, one of three women who raised the tricolour over Enniscorthy town in Ireland during the Easter Rising of 1916, it  explores the consequences for all of us when memories are manipulated or obliterated, intentionally or by chance. By mapping my own family stories onto the history of the Irish State, I examine how Irish life today has been affected by the censorship and mixed messages of the past.

The story moves from Washerwoman’s Hill in Dublin to London and back again, spans two world wars, a revolution, a civil war and the development of a republic, and culminates in Ireland’s 2015 same-sex marriage referendum.

In the book are various words and terms which readers unfamiliar with the Irish language may find  difficult to pronounce. This page offers hints to help with their pronunciation. 


p4   Cumann na mBan - Kum-en Nah Mon
p5   Fianna Éireann     - Fee-ah-neh Air-ann


p28   Sinn Féin             - Shin Fayne
p44  Cú Chulainn        - Coo Hul-ann


p50  Corca Dhuibhne - Kirka Gwee-nah
p50  Danú                   - Dah-nue
p50  Bríd                    - Breed
p50 Gaeltacht            - Gwale-tokt
p51 Dindsenchas       - Dind-shen-kas
p57 Conradh 
na Gaeilge                 - Kun-rah nah Gwale-geh
p59 An Blascoid
Mór                           - On Blas-kade More
p59 An tOileán         - On Till-awn
p61 Niamh                - Neeve
p61 Talc Mac Trone  - Talc Mack Trone
p61 Baile Bhiocáire  - Boll-yeh Vick-oy-reh
p61 Dún Chaoin        - Doon Queen
p62 Neillí Mhuiris
Ní Chonchubhair      - Nelly Wirrish Nee Con-uh-koor
p65 Garda
Siochána                  -  Guard-ah Shee-o-kawn-ah
67   Gardaí               -  Gar-dee
p67 An Giall            -  On Gee-al
p68 Fíor Gaelach     -  Fear Gwale-ock


p74 Inghinidhe na 
hÉireann                - Inn-een nah Hair-ann
p90 Fianna            - Fee-ah-nah


p94 Emain
 Macha                    - Ow-ann Mock-ah
p95 Badhb              -  Bye- beh
p102 Éamonn 
Ceannt                    -  Eh-mon Kant
p103  Taoiseach       -  Tee-shock
p113  Sinne Fianna
Fáil                  - Shin-ah Fee-ah-nah Foyle
p114  Sinne Laochra
Fáil                  - Shin-sh Lay-o-kra Foyle
p 115  Ulaid      - Ull-id
p 116  Dún
Laoghaire        - Doon Lay-o-rah


p121  Fionn
 MacCumhaill         - Fin Mack Cool
p 138 Caitlín
Ní Houlihan             - Cath-leen  Nee Hoolihan
p138 Róisín
Dubh                        - Row-sheen Duv
p139 Ceann Trá      - Key-ow-en Traw
p139  Fionn Trá      -  Fee-own Traw ( variant on the pronunciation of Fionn p121)
p140 Baile Mhic
a'Dubhaill               - Boll-yeh Vick ah Dool
p140 Baile na
Gamhain                 - Boll-yeh nah Gow-ann


p145 Dáil Éireann  - Doyle Air-ann


p171 Béal na 
mBláth                 -  Bale nah mlaw
p174 Seanad        -  Shan-add


p197 Micheál
MacLiammóir      - Mee-haul Mack Lee-ah-more
p198 An Tóstal    - On Toast-al


p224 Liam
Ó Bríain            - Lee-am Oh Bree-ann


No Irish language words appear in this chapter.


  1. Thank you for this guide Felicity. I know you mentioned it in A Woven Silence ,but I wasn't able to find your Author's page ( technically challenged ). You posted about Aengus Óg this morning and there it was ! Very helpful. I enjoyed the info on Aengus Óg. Now back to the blog to find what I have missed!

  2. Glad you found it and that it's useful. :) Hope you'll enjoy the rest of the blog as well.


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