Tuesday, 25 May 2010
In the wake of the recent announcement from Westminster about budgetary cuts, there was a meeting in Belfast of the first ministers of the administrations in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. This was reported accurately on BBC but on the UTV news it was described as a meeting of the 'Celtic countries'.
I referred to the use of this term on a recent post and it is an inaccurate term. Northern Ireland is not a 'Celtic country', either lingustically or ethnically. There are some people who speak Gaelic but it is a minority language and so we are not a Celtic country in a linguistic sense. Neither are we a Celtic country in an ethnic sense as many peoples have arrived and settled in Ulster down through the years - Pre-Celts, Cruithin, Celts, Vikings, Anglo-Normans, English, Scots and Welsh. My mother's family were originally of Dutch origin, although she was born in Scotland.
The use of the term 'Celtic countries' is therefore erroneous.
Posted by Nelson McCausland MLA at 14:09