Reply To: how to pronounce Samhain?

The British Druid Order Forums BDO Public Forum how to pronounce Samhain? Reply To: how to pronounce Samhain?

#12267
Dowrgi
Participant

In Irish Gaelic it’s more or less “sa’win” or “sown”, depending on the dialect. Scots and Manx Gaelic have slight different pronunciations/variations respectively – Samhainnor and Sauin. I believe the word refers to the Month of November – Mí na Samhna, more or less pronounced “mee na souna”. The night of the 31st is Oíche Shamhna, pronounced “ee howna”.

There is no Cornish pronunciation in the sense that this is a Gaelic word. The Cornish term is Nos Kalan Gwav. The Irish word is believed to derive from a Celtic root *sam connected to summer. The Cornish word gwav, connected to the Welsh and Breton forms, means winter. It has been said that Samhain was the Celtic New Year, however, I don’t think there’s a lot of evidence to support that. The Welsh word for November is Tachwedd, which means the month of slaughter. October in Welsh is Hydref, the month of the stag call.

Bennathow
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