Blog by Gifts of Ireland

Top 9 Common Irish Sayings And Meanings

Top 9 Common Irish Sayings And Meanings
Hello there everyone! It's Aidan here from Gifts of Ireland. I hope you are all well.

Over a pint, myself and my friend Laura talked about some common Irish phrases and Irish sayings. She is from Finland and was keen to learn some Irish slang so I decided we should get it on video for anyone else to learn! Well, many of us know how to say hello in Irish. Dia dhuit is our Irish greeting. But, being from the midlands of Ireland, I am well used to hearing and using funny Irish sayings myself so it was all a bit natural to me! I have nine common Irish sayings explained here from my own experience so get the popcorn out and enjoy.

 

1. 'Ah sure look it'

We tend to nod the head as we say this Irish phrase, and look away a little. Sometimes people use it as a way to move on from what is being said whilst others might use it to accept the things as they are. Ah sure look it what can you do?

 


2. 'On the piss'

Well excuse the bad language, but sure look it, I had to tell you to be authentic and truthful. Warts and all as we say. This expression is used when we are going out for a lot of alcohol. When I was younger I have to admit I used it a fair bit. But now I just enjoy the odd Guinness or a drop of whiskey. Make sure you've no children around if you watch the video. I'm joking it's not that bad..


3. 'Grand'

Grand is a really common Irish saying about life in general. Ah grand. We use grand to say that, we are OK, doing good. Again, we an accepting people here in the Emerald Isle so we like the head nod of approval and the ah grand. The video will explain it much better!


4. 'Go away outta that'

Ah my mother uses this a lot. Maybe that's because she feels she needs to around me. It's a great one to use for disbelief, or, 'you're having me on'. Often accompanied by a soft elbow and a frown, or a smirk. Ah it all depends. Have a look and see if it makes sense for you.


5. 'Well?'

We say this as a short for 'Are you well?'. In Ireland, we all tend to be well. It's an informal way of saying hello to good friends and family. Pick up the phone and say...well?

 


6. 'I'm knackered'

Knackered is a great Irish expression that we use when we are tired. I'm knackered! How are you keeping, are you tired? Oh I'm knackared!

 

7. That's gas'

This is nonflammable and odorless. But it's gas. My explanation of it with Laura will give you a better insight into how I normally use this saying.


8. 'Sound'

We use this to describe someone as a decent person. Another context is if everything is agreeable, 100%. I tend to have a bit of a head nod here too.

 

9. 'C'mere to me'

We use this if there's something juicy to talk about. Others use it just as a way of getting attention or calling someone out. In Dublin city you can often hear it being shouted loud down the street to another. Or, in the countryside in a local pub, it could be a whisper on the comfortable couch like I have there in the video. Let's see if it makes sense the way I say it.




If you're an Irish person reading this blog, you'll surely have your own different context of saying these. That's what I love about this lovely country. That we are so different, but the same at the end of the day. If you're American perhaps, then you'll need to get practicing. If John Wayne in The Quiet Man knew in advance that his aunt was going to leave a house to him, he'd surely have read my blog.

Do you know any others? Let me know in the comments section.


Well c'mere to me my friends, it was sound of you to stop by. I hope you got something from this. I'm knackered because I was on the piss last night so I'm off to hit the hay to have a grand sleep!

Slán go fóill,

Aidan

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9 comments

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  • Sharon Kennedy Thompson
    Nov 09, 2022 at 02:08

    I am 3rd generation Irish American on my dads side. I wish I had known my great grandparents as they both came from Ireland. I do remember my grandpap having said some of these things. I would that I could visit Ireland as my dad did.

    Reply
  • Sharon Hill
    Nov 07, 2022 at 06:38

    Maybe someday I will get to visit the Emerald Isle. For now the armchair tour will have to do.

    Reply
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