Old IrishEdit


From Proto-Celtic *tangʷāss (compare Welsh tafod), from Proto-Indo-European *dn̥ǵʰwéh₂s (tongue, speech, language)



tengae f (genitive tengad, nominative plural tengaid)

  1. tongue
    • c. 875, Milan Glosses on the Psalms, published in Thesaurus Palaeohibernicus (reprinted 1987, Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies), edited and with translations by Whitley Stokes and John Strachan, vol. I, pp. 7–483, Ml. 31b23
      in bélrai .i. is and atá gním tengad isind huiliu labramar-ni
      of speech, i.e. the action of the tongue is in all that we say
  2. language


Feminine t-stem
Singular Dual Plural
Nominative tengae tengaidL, tengae tengaid
Vocative tengae tengaidL, tengae tengtha
Accusative tengaidN tengaidL, tengae tengtha
Genitive tengad tengad tengadN
Dative tengaidL, teng(a) tengthaib tengthaib
Initial mutations of a following adjective:
  • H = triggers aspiration
  • L = triggers lenition
  • N = triggers nasalization


  • Irish: teanga
  • Manx: çhengey
  • Scottish Gaelic: teanga


Old Irish mutation
Radical Lenition Nasalization
tengae thengae tengae
pronounced with /d(ʲ)-/
Note: Some of these forms may be hypothetical. Not every
possible mutated form of every word actually occurs.