Word of the day – seilleann-dé

seilleann-dé, noun = butterfly – (lit. “bee of God”)

Related words:
seilleann-mòr – bumble bee (lit. “big bee”)
seilleann-nimh – hornet (lit. “poison bee”)
seilleann-seimhid – snail
seilleannach – fulls of bees, teasing, capricious

There are also some interesting words for butterfly in Welsh:
iâr fach yr haf (lit. “summer chick”)
glöyn byw (lit. “living coal”)
pila-pala
bili-balo

In Irish, a butterfly is a féileacán – sounds like “failure can”, and in Manx it’s foillycan or follican – sounds like “foily can” as in a can covered in foil.

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This entry was posted in Language, Scottish Gaelic, Words and phrases.

2 Responses to Word of the day – seilleann-dé

  1. Joseph Staleknight says:

    Is there a related word for ‘wasp’ in Scottish Gaelic?

  2. Simon says:

    There are a number of words for wasp in Scottish Gaelic: beach*, connspeach, creithleag, gasbaid, seamanach and speach.
    *also means bee