Your Hiberno-English Word of the Day

Today’s secret word is craic. It’s an Irish word – one of those words you can’t really translate into English. Something you feel rather than explain. It’s a noun. It means fun. Liveliness. Spirit? Music’s usually involved, but not specifically music. Craic’s a good thing. You want to be where the craic is. You like the craic.

How do you pronounce it? Craic rhymes with the English word “crack.” That word can be a noun or a verb. When it’s a noun, it can mean a sudden sharp noise, or a witty remark, or, of course, like craic, it can also mean something that a lot of people like. A hell of a drug. Is it a coincidence? I think not. Why – what has fun/liveliness/mirth/possibly music/spirit got to do with a Class A drug?

Let’s examine some common uses of craic.

How’s the craic, b’hoy? Grand.

Hmm. Suspicious.

Where’s the craic? Down the pub.

Why’d you do it? For the craic.

Curiouser and curiouser….

Why’d you leave? Ah, there wasn’t any craic.

Let’s go where the craic is.

Try it, sure. It’s good craic.

I rest my case.


One Reply to “Your Hiberno-English Word of the Day”

  1. Very cool semantics lesson. I got a Masters in Linguistics, so I especially love learning new words and Irish origin at that! It’s interesting that crack (as it’s becoming used in the States) is sort of taking on the same meaning to describe something that feels good or is pleasurable as in “He’s my crack.”

    Except there’s the added element of addiction to it.

    Looking forward to reading more of your blog

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