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     Michael H Glen

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We used interpretations in Gaelic by Gavin Parsons on the reverse of each of the 20 ‘signal signs’ for which we wrote the original, quite cryptic verse to describe aspects of life at Leitir Fura, an abandoned village on Skye. For example:

Ash
that Odin carved as his first Norseman
                   rich in mystery, magic in healing, and
                                     strong in millwheel axles,
lined a procession of humble,
wide-horned, destined cattle
                                             for a lowland table.



Forestry Commission Scotland has been keen to emphasise the importance of the language without using bilingual interpretation. We have worked with them to ‘embed’ Gaelic words within English text to give visitors a flavour of the language:

... We can plant buntàtapotatoes, which we rely on so much, sow the eòrnabarley or sow corcoats for brochanporridge ...

... They care nothing for the Gàidhealtachd, our ways, our people, our language and ar beathannanour lives. Mo mallachd aig na caoraich mhòr - my curse on the big sheep.

Recent research suggests that vistors and local people now want to see complete text in both Gaelic and English. For that reason we are now looking again at how we approach billingual interpretation.