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Tree Dogs, Banshee Fingers and Other Irish Words for Nature

‘In Irish there are so many great rain words and magic words and highly specific natural words (such as the material put on the hooves of donkeys to stop them slipping in ice), or words to communicate with animals, or evocative plant words, or the gorgeous words for different amounts of light in the sky, or words that hint at different ways of seeing colour, or twilight words … ’


Manchán Magan is fascinated by words, particularly Irish words, with all of their complex meanings and associations and their connections to the natural world. Having enjoyed huge success with his bestselling book Thirty-Two Words for Field, Manchán now brings his infectious wonder and enthusiasm for the Irish language to a younger audience, offering delightful translations and explanations of animal, bird, fish, insect and nature words.


When you see the world through Irish, you see the world differently. Get ready to share the magic with this delightful book for readers of all ages.



Publication Date

October 2021




Hardback, 96 pages

Country of Origin



Gill Books


By Manchán Magan Illustrated by Steve Doogan

Availability Status

Not yet published

Manchán Magan is a writer and documentary-maker. He has written books on his travels in Africa, India and South America, and his book Thirty-two Words for Field was a runaway bestseller. He lives in an oak wood, with bees, hens and vegetables, in a slightly confused house with a grass roof, near Lough Lene, Co. Westmeath.


Steve Doogan works in a wide variety of media and styles. He loves printmaking - etching, linocut and monoprints - and drawing.


Reflections: Welcome to the Gill Books Catalogue of New Books

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