Outlander Episode 304 – Of Lost Things – All the Gàidhlig Bits I Could Decipher

So, has everyone recovered yet from this week’s heartbreaking episode? I was greetin’ so hard there towards the end that it took 3 viewings and multiple people pointing it out to me on Twitter to recognize that there was even Gaelic in this week’s offering from the Outlander Writers’ Room. However, I’ve dried my tears, consulted the oracle and have the below translation to offer.

48:47  Jamie to Willie after calling him a wee bastard

Na bith còin, a bhalaich. Bithidh e glè cheart. – Don’t cry, my lad. It’ll be quite (i.e. all) right.

Updated 6/10/2015 – Outlander Episode 209 – Je Suis Prest – All the Gàidhlig Bits I Could Decipher

What a beautiful episode! The Scottish scenery was breathtaking as always, but for me, what truly added another dimension to this episode was the spectacular score by Bear McCreary. The haunting songs, some familiar and some new, really brought home to me to reality of the task Jamie and Claire were taking on.  And in terms of Gaelic, almost all the Gaelic this episode was in the music other than a few stray Sassenach and Mo nighean donn endearments. (If I’ve missed something else in the dialog, let me know!)  Therefore, this post is going to concentrate on the lyrics and background of the Gaelic songs used by Bear McCreary this week.

Edit: someone did point out that there was a new Gaelic phrase that Jamie used with the men at one point. I believe that is ‘a’ mhór-fhaiche’ (the great field), one of the Fraser battle cries.

Further edit: Here are more details on the other Gaelic words/phrases used this week. Thanks to all those who pointed them out while I was so taken with the music. 😉

17:28 Jamie to the marching men

Stadaibh! – Stop!

20:07 Jamie and the men give the Fraser battle cry

a’ mhór-fhaiche – Fraser Battle cry that roughly translates to ‘the great field’. Prounounced /ə VORE EYEch/

20:12 Dougal and the MacKenzies

Tulach Ard – MacKenszie battle cry that translates to ‘the high hill’.

26:58 Jamie to one of the men

a-rithist – again

38:22 Jamie to Claire

Mo nighean donn – My brown-haired lass

49:53 Jamie as Dougal leaves

siud – that/yes

I should note that I had some help in gathering this information from Bear’s tweet, as well as from CompuServe member AlexL who tracked down a lot of this information and was happy for me to share it!

An Fhìdeag Airgid

Many of you may recognize this as song used in season one of Outlander and sung by Gwyllyn the Bard (played by Gillebrìde MacMillan) in episode 103 – Rent. You can find that version, which does not contain any reference to the Prince, on volume 2 of the season 1 Outlander soundtrack, also available on Spotify.


Lyrics: English Translation:
Co a sheinneas an fhideag airigid Who will play the silver whistle?
Sèist: Chorus (after each verse):
Ho ro hu a hu il o Ho ro hu a hu il o
Hi ri hu o, hi ri hu o Hi ri hu o, hi ri hu o
Mac mo righ air tighinn a dh’Alba Since the son of my king has come to Scotland
Air lang mhar nar tri chrann airgid On a great ship with three masts of silver
Air long riomhach nam ball airgid On the handsome vessel with the silver rigging
Tearlach og nan gorm shuil mealach Young Charles with the blue bewitching eyes
Failte, failte mian is clui dhuit Welcome, welcome, may you be desired and famous
Fidhleireachd is ragha a’uil dhuit May there be fiddling and the choicest music before you
Co a sheinneadh? Nach seinninn fhin i? Who’d play it? Who’d say that I’d not play it myself?
Co a sheinneas an fhideag airigid Who will play the silver whistle?
Source: http://www.celticlyricscorner.net/matheson/anfhideag.htm

Moch sa mhadainn ’s mi dùsgadh (also called Oran Eile Don Phrionnsa – Song to the Prince)

This is the haunting song that is played during the drill scenes and at the end on the approach to the Prince’s camp to such devastating effect. This is what Bear had to say on Twitter:



I have had the pleasure of hearing Griogair Labhruidh perform live and he is a brilliant musician. I can also definitely say that I will be pre-ordering the Outlander season 2 soundtrack as soon as it is available based solely upon my desire to have this one song alone.

Lyrics: English Translation:
Sèist: Chorus (after each verse):
Thug ho-o, laithill ho-o Thug ho-o, laithill ho-o
Thug o-ho-ro an aill libh Thug o-ho-ro an aill libh
Thug ho-o, laithill ho-o Thug ho-o, laithill ho-o
Seinn o-ho-ro an aill libh Seinn o-ho-ro an aill libh
Och ‘sa mhaduinn’s mi dusgadh Early as I awaken
‘S mor mo shunnd’s mo cheol-gaire Great my joy, loud my laughter
O’n a chuala mi ‘m Prionnsa Since I heard that the Prince comes
Thighinn do dhuthaich Chlann Ra’ill To the land of Clanranald
O’n a chuala mi ‘m Prionnsa Since I heard that the Prince comes
Thighinn do dhuthaich Chlann Ra’ill To the land of Clanranald
Grainne mullaich gach righ thu Thou art the choicest of all rulers
Slan gum pill thusa, Thearlaich Here’s a health to thy returning
Grainne mullaich gach righ thu Thou art the choicest of all rulers
Slan gum pill thusa, Thearlaich Here’s a health to thy returning
‘S ann th ‘n fhior-fhuil gun truailleadh His the royal blood unmingled
Anns a ghruadh is mor-naire Great the modesty in his visage
‘S ann th ‘n fhior-fhuil gun truailleadh His the royal blood unmingled
Anns a ghruadh is mor-naire Great the modesty in his visage
Mar ri barrachd na h-uaisle With nobility overflowing
‘G eirigh suas le deagh-nadur And endowed with all good nature
Mar ri barrachd na h-uaisle With nobility overflowing
‘G eirigh suas le deagh-nadur And endowed with all good nature
Us nan tigeadh tu rithist And shouldst thou return ever
Bhiodh gach tighearn’ ‘n aite At his post would be each laird
Source: http://www.celticlyricscorner.net/capercaillie/oraneile.htm

When researching this song, I stumbled across a fascinating video about the author of the original poetry the song is based upon.   The dialogue in the video is in Gaelic but a written English translation is available on the LearnGaelic web site. I find seeing the Gaelic and English transcription as I’m watching to be an excellent way to learn Gaelic words and sounds.


I hope you enjoy this look behind two of the Gaelic songs used to such effect by Bear McCreary this week!

Outlander Episode 208 – The Fox’s Lair – All the Gàidhlig Bits I Could Decipher

Fàilte gu Alba a h-uile duine! (Welcome to Scotland everyone!) If there was anyone who was not sure of the main locale for the rest of the season, the change in the main title sequence should remove any doubts. Not just that, but the baroque arrangement of the Sky Boat Song has been altered in favor of a much more Celtic version complete with drums providing the illusion of cannon fire in the last verse and then melting into the very martial sound of snare drums as the episode proper opened.

And is it just me or did everyone breathe a little bit easier now that the show and our favorite couple are back in the familiar surrounds of Scotland? I’m expecting the Gaelic to be a bit more plentiful now and this episode sure didn’t disappoint. We had, in my opinion, the most beautiful Gaelic scene since episode 116. Thanks for everyone’s patience as I worked to make sure that I got the Gaelic translation correct for what actually made the episode’s final cut, and not just what was in the script.

Let’s get right to it.

4:16  Jamie to Ian after receiving the post

Taing dhut – Thank You

4:41 Jamie curses reading the letter from Paris

a mhealltair mhallaichte –  ‘Cursed deceiver’ (Hard to translate directly. This is my best attempt.)

12:38 Jamie to baby Catrìona

Na dìochuimhnich…. – never forget

Shin u…. a ghràidh…. Catrìona ….  – love… Catherine…

mo bhràthair Uilleam, mi fhéin, Sorcha. – my brother William, myself, Claire

Tha sinn san fhiodh, sa chloich…. – We’re in the wood, the stone…

agas ann an gach fuaim ‘s fàile an àite seo… – And in the sounds and smells of this place…

‘s e an obair sin, a chaileag, gum fàs u làidir agas sona…. – Your role, wee lass, is to grow strong and happy…


Outlander Episode 201 – Through a Glass, Darkly – The Gàidhlig Bits I Could Decipher

It’s over! It’s finally OVER! Droughtlander has ended and it appears that everyone has survived. Not a lot of Gaelic in this episode, but not surprising considering we didn’t even get to 1745 until over half an hour in, but there were a few nice phrases. Translations below as always.


Le Havre

39:21   Murtagh muttering under his breath

‘s mairg leam seo air fad! – I consider this crappy! (colloquial)


40:21  Jamie as he lies on the bed

Gasta! A bed that doesna move. – Great! A bed that doesna move


44:43  Jamie curses under his breath about what to tell Murtagh

Mac na galla! – Son of a bitch!


48:46 Jamie as he hands his shirt to Claire

Seo – Two ways to interpret this. Could be ‘here’ as he hands Claire the shirt or ‘this’ speaking to Jared referencing his back.

Updated 6/6/2015 – Outlander Episode 116 – To Ransom a Man’s Soul – The Gàidhlig Bits I Could Decipher

Great news! The Gaelic is back in a big way this episode. The bad news is that it was way more complicated than what I normally translate. I’m giving it my best shot though and will call in the big guns as needed.

After the rescue

8:22 Jamie to Claire

Leig leam falbh- Let me go die.

8:38 Jamie to Murtagh

Feumaidh tu stad a chur air mo chràdh! – You must put an end to my torment!

Murtagh to Jamie

Chan éist mi ri seo! – I won’t listen to this!

At the Abbey

27:02 Angus to Willie after the story about his uncle

Dùin do chraos! -shut your big mouth!

I know this is what everyone wants but I don’t have anywhere near all of this yet, just some pieces. I’m putting what I have here and if anyone else can pick out more words, please let me know.

UPDATED: Ok. I have this now. Thanks to those who submitted their possible translations (especially Laura and McInnis). I wanted to wait a bit and see if I could get confirmation, but here’s my best shot! Here is a back translation of perhaps one of the most moving passages of the entire show.

27:11 Jamie to Murtagh

 Ciamar as urrainn ​mo leigeil ris a’ chràdh seo​?​ – How ​can I be left to ​this pain?

Murtagh to Jamie

Nì sinn ar dìcheall do leigheas.​ – We shall do our utmost to heal you.

Jamie to Murtagh

Cha ghabh cuid de ​nithean​ leigheas – Some things ​don​’t ​take h​ealing​.

Mar as miann leam, cuir crìoch air seo a-nis. – As is my desire, put an end to this now.

Murtagh to Jamie

Chan ​fhu​ilinn mi ​’n c​òrr. – I’ll suffer no more of this.

Jamie to Murtagh

Chan fhaigh mi seachad air seo. – I won’t get ​past​ this.

An toir ​u orm aslachdainn? – Will you force me to beg?​

Murtagh to Jamie

Thug mi geall do d​’ mhàthair. – I gave a promise to your mother.

​Sìth air a h-anam​. –  Peace on her soul

Nach tig​eadh cron ort​. – That no harm would come to you.​

Jamie to Murtagh

Is anmoch an uair, a ghoistidh -late is the hour, oh godfather​.

Murtagh to Jamie

Agas Claire? – And Claire?

Am bitheadh i na banntrach, air a treigsinn? –  Would she just be a widow, forsaken?

Tha do cheann sa bhrochan. – Your head’s in the porridge (you’re not thinking straight).

Chan eil smaoin agad oirre ann. – You haven’t a single thought for her.

Jamie to Murtagh

Chan eil smaoin agam ann ach oirre-se. – I have​n’t a single​ thought ​of anything but her.

33:32 Willie to Jamie when he walks into Jamie’s room

A Fhrisealaich, bheil u dùisgte? – Fraser, are you awake?

On the beach

51:26  Angus to Murtagh

Air d’ ais, ana-chrìosdaidh -Be off with you, heathen!

On the Cristabel

55:43 Jamie to Claire when she tells him she’s pregnant

Gast’ air fad! – Absolutely brilliant.

With that we’ve reached the end of a marvelous season 1 for Outlander. I’m a bit sad to think that this is the end of the Gaelic episode recaps for the better part of a year. But, I think on #WorldOutlanderDay it is entirely appropriate to thank two people for the part they’ve played in making sure Gaelic language and culture were not given short shrift in the Outlander universe.

First, it was Diana Gabaldon’s brilliance and dedication to grounding her work in the real language and culture of the time period she chose that started a worldwide interest among people who had maybe not given it much thought before. The ultimate vision was hers and it is that vision given such great life in the TV series. However, in that Outlander TV world, it is Àdhamh Ó Broin who deserves our thanks and appreciation for working tirelessly to make sure that authenticity was brought to every scene where Gaelic was spoken.

It was his passion for his culture and history that led him to fight to get or keep every scrap of Gaelic dialogue he could and prevent anything from being a caricature . It was his care and dedication as a teacher that made sure that the actors he worked with were able to learn and perform their lines in such stupendous fashion and, I think in many cases, gain a real appreciation for language and culture they may not have had before. And lastly, it was his generosity as a person that led him to share his time and passion with the countless numbers of Outlander fans through social media. I know I would have probably given up in frustration at ever reaching any understanding of Gaelic without his tireless support and encouragement for a rank beginner. I hope no one will think I take too much on myself when I offer profound thanks on behalf of all of us Outlander fans. Congrats Àdhamh on a brilliant end of season 1 that fittingly includes perhaps the strongest Gaelic scene of the entire season. I know I can’t wait to see what season 2 has in store!

Slàn leat an-dràsta. (Goodbye for now)

P.S. I will keep updating this post as more translation for the scene between Jamie and Murtagh becomes available.

P.S.S. Full transcript now included!!