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Letter to Gaelic Learners Litir do Luchd-ionnsachaidh

Ruairidh MacIlleathain A series of letters to support Gaelic learners. This will help learners who already have some knowledge and understanding of Gaelic and are looking to develop their language skills. Sound files, text, vocabulary and language notes are also available. Sreath de litrichean a bheir taic do luchd-ionnsachaidh na Gàidhlig. Bidh iad seo cuideachail do luchd-ionnsachaidh le beagan tuigs air a’ Ghàidhlig agus a tha a’ coimhead airson dòigh air na sgilean cànain aca a leasachadh. Tha faidhle fuaim, teacsa, briathrachas agus puingean cànain rim faighinn cuideachd.

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Roualeyn George Gordon-Cumming (Litir 721)

Tha sinn fhathast anns a’ Ghleann Mhòr an t-seachdain seo. Bu mhath leam innse dhuibh mu fhear ainmeil a chuir seachad nam bliadhnaichean mu dheireadh aige ann an Cille Chuimein, taobh Loch Nis. Bha e ainmeil mar an ‘sealgair-leòmhann’.

B’ e an duine Roualeyn George Gordon-Cumming. Bha e na fhear-siubhail agus na fhear-spòrs. Tuigidh sibh nach robh a theaghlach gann de dh’airgead. Bha tàthan eadar ‘Gordon’ is ‘Cumming’.

B’ e Roualeyn George an dàrna mac aig Uilleam Gòrdan Gordon-Cumming, fear a bha am measg nan uaislean mòra. Rugadh an gille ann an ochd ceud deug is fichead (1820), agus fhuair e a chuid foghlaim aig Eton. Nuair a bha e ochd-deug, dh’fhalbh e do na h-Innseachan far an robh e an sàs ann an Eachraidh Aotrom Mhadras. Ach cha do chòrd an aimsir anns na h-Innseachan ris agus thill e dhachaigh.

Bha aon rud air còrdadh ris anns na h-Innseachan, ge-tà – sealg. Chaidh e an uair sin a dh’Ameireagaidh a Tuath, far an robh e a’ dèanamh tuilleadh seilg.

Ann an ochd ceud deug, ceathrad ’s a trì (1843), chaidh Gordon-Cumming a dh’Afraga. Thòisich e anns a’ Cheap ach cha b’ fhada gus an robh e ann am meadhan na mòr-thìr, a’ sealg agus a’ sealg. Bha an dùthaich sin làn bheathaichean mòra aig an àm sin. Chuir Gordon-Cumming seachad còig bliadhna ann an Afraga agus sgrìobh e leabhar Five Years of a Hunter: Life in the Far Interior of South Africa. Dh’fhàs e ainmeil air a shàillibh.

Bha pàirtean dhen chunntas aige doirbh a chreidsinn do chuid, ged a sgrìobh Daibhidh Mac Dhùn Lèibhe gun gabhadh a h-uile pàirt dheth a chreidsinn. Thuirt an Cuimeanach gun do leum e a-steach gu linne turas anns an robh each-aibhne a bh’ air a ghoirteachadh. Le sgian, gheàrr e eagan ann an cliathaich a’ chreutair. Chuir e iallan leathair tro na lùban agus, le taic bho a chompanaich, tharraing e an t-each-aibhne a-mach às an uisge.

Rinn Gordon-Cumming dealbhan dubh-is-geal airson an leabhair. Sin e ann am fear dhiubh le sgian, a’ toirt ionnsaigh air an each-aibhne leòinte – beathach mòr fiadhaich. Sin e a-rithist ann an dealbh eile, cuide ri fear dubh Afraganach, agus iad a’ feuchainn ri nathair mhòr fhada a tharraing a-mach às na creagan le bhith a’ greimeachadh air a h-earball.

Ghlèidh e cuid de na closaichean is cinn a fhuair e. Bha iad air an sealltainn don phoball anns a’ Mhòr-thaisbeanadh ann an Lunnainn ann an ochd ceud deug, caogad ’s a h-aon (1851). Chaidh an cruinneachadh aige – ‘The South Africa Museum’ – a thoirt timcheall Bhreatainn. Mu dheireadh, chaidh a thoirt do thalla ann an Cille Chuimein, far an cuireadh Gordon-Cumming seachad na h-ochd bliadhna mu dheireadh de a bheatha.

Aig an àm sin, bha tòrr luchd-turais a’ siubhal tro Chille Chuimein, agus iad air bàtaichean anns a’ Chanàl Chailleannach eadar an Gearasdan agus Inbhir Nis. Bhiodh Gordon-Cumming a’ nochdadh air bruaichean a’ chanàil nuair a bhiodh bàta a’ tighinn a-steach, agus èideadh Gàidhealach air, le gobhar na chois. Bhiodh e a’ brosnachadh dhaoine gus a dhol a choimhead air an taisbeanadh aige de shealg ann an Afraga, aig prìs tastain.

Agus ’s ann an Cille Chuimein a thàinig eachdraidh iongantach gu crìch, ann an ochd ceud deug, seasgad ’s a sia (1866) aig aois dìreach ceathrad ’s a sia.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Faclan na Litreach: Cille Chuimein: Fort Augustus; sealgair-leòmhann: hunter of lions; tàthan: hyphen; Na h-Innseachan: India; Eachraidh Aotrom Mhadras: Madras Light Cavalry; Ameireagaidh a Tuath: North America; an Cuimeanach: Cumming; iallan leathair:leather thongs; lùban: loops; leòinte: wounded; closaichean: animal carcases; Am Mòr-thaisbeanadh: The Great Exhibition; An Canàl Cailleannach: The Caledonian Canal.

Abairtean na Litreach: anns a’ Ghleann Mhòr: in the Great Glen; tuigidh sibh nach robh a theaghlach gann de dh’airgead: you’ll understand that his family wasn’t short of money; cha do chòrd an aimsir ris: he didn’t enjoy the weather; thòisich e anns a’ Cheap: he started in the Cape; cha b’ fhada gus an robh e ann am meadhan na mòr-thìr: it wasn’t long until he was in the middle of the continent; dh’fhàs e ainmeil air a shàillibh: he became famous on the strength of it; bha pàirtean dhen chunntas aige doirbh a chreidsinn do chuid: some people found parts of his account difficult to believe; ged a sgrìobh Daibhidh Mac Dhùn Lèibhe gun gabhadh a h-uile pàirt dheth a chreidsinn: although David Livingstone wrote that it could all be believed; each-aibhne a bh’ air a ghoirteachadh: a hippopotamus that was injured; gheàrr e eagan ann an cliathaich a’ chreutair:he cut notches in the creature’s side; a’ feuchainn ri nathair mhòr fhada a tharraing a-mach às na creagan: trying to pull a large long snake out of the rocks; le bhith a’ greimeachadh air a h-earball: by grasping its [her] tail; agus èideadh Gàidhealach air, le gobhar na chois: wearing Highland garb and accompanied by a goat; bhiodh e a’ brosnachadh dhaoine:he would be encouraging people; gus a dhol a choimhead air an taisbeanadh aige de shealg ann an Afraga: to go and see his exhibition of hunting in Africa; aig prìs tastain: at the cost of a shilling; a thàinig eachdraidh iongantach gu crìch: that his amazing story came to an end.

Puing-chànain na Litreach: far an robh e a’ dèanamh tuilleadh seilg: where he was doing more hunting. Sealg ‘hunting’ is a feminine noun which has several forms in the genitive singular viz. seilg, seilge and sealga. All three forms can be seen in Scottish place-names eg Cnoc na Seilg ‘the hill of the hunting’, Srath na Seilge ‘the strath of the hunting’ and Allt na Sealga ‘the burn of the hunting’.

Gnàthas-cainnt na Litreach: a chuir seachad nam bliadhnaichean mu dheireadh aige: who spent his final years.

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An Litir Bheag

This letter corresponds to Tha an Litir seo a’ buntainn ri An Litir Bheag 417

Podcast

BBC offers this litir as a podcast – visit the programme page for more info and to download or subscribe. Tha am BBC a’ tabhainn seo mar podcast. Tadhail air an duilleag-phrògraim airson barrachd fiosrachaidh no airson podcast fhaighinn

Other Letters Litrichean eile

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Àireamh / Number

Facal / Word