Words for kitchens and related words in Celtic languages.

My kitchen / Fy nghegin

Middle Irish (Goídelc) cisten = kitchen
Irish (Gaeilge) cistin [ˈcɪʃtʲənʲ] = kitchen, cook-house
cistineach = culinary
cistin phoiblí = soup kitchen
cistin taistil = travelling kitchen
cúlchistin = back-kitchen, scullery
sorn cistine = cooker
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) cidsin/citsin [kʲidʲɪn/kʲiʃdʲɪn] = kitchen
cidsin-dubh = scullery
cidsineach/citsineach = culinary, pertaining to or abounding in kitchens
Manx (Gaelg) kishteen = cookhouse
kishteen cooyl = back kitchen
sorn kishteen = cooking range, cooker

Etymology: from Middle English kychyn (kitchen, cooking, cuisine), from Old English cyċene [ˈky.t͡ʃ] (kitchen), from Proto-West-Germanic *kukinā (kitchen), from Late Latin cocīna (kitchen), from coquīna (cooking, cookery, kitchen). from Latin coquō (to cook, prepare food, ripen, roast), ultimately from PIE *pekʷ- (to cook, become ripe) [source].

English words from the same roots include kitchen, cook, cuisine, biscuit and kiln [source].

Cegin Castell Penrhyn Castle Kitchen

Proto-Brythonic *kėgin = kitchen
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) kegyn, kecyn = kitchen
Welsh (Cymraeg) cegin [ˈkɛɡɪn/ˈkeːɡɪn] = kitchen
cegin(i)af, cegin(i)o = to cook, prepare food
ceginaidd = culinary, commonplace
cegindy = eating-house, cook-shop
ceginfa = galley
ceginiaeth = cookery, the culinary art, cuisine
ceginol = culinary
ceginwaith = kitchen work, cookery
ceginwas = scullion, kitchen-knave
ceginwr / ceginwraig = cook
cegin gefn/fach = back kitchen
cegin groes = scullery
cegin orau = parlour, sitting-room
Old Cornish keghin = kitchen
Cornish (Kernewek) kegin [ˈkɛɡɪn] = kitchen
kegina = to cook
keginer / keginores = chef
keginieth = cookery
Breton (Brezhoneg) kegin = kitchen
keginañ = to cook, culinary
keginer = cook, chef cooker
keginerezh = cooking, cuisine
keginouriezh = art of cooking, culinary art, cuisine

Etymology: from the Vulgar Latin cucīna (cooking, kitchen), from the Latin coquō (to cook), from the Proto-Indo-European *pekʷ- (to cook, become ripe) [source].

Manx (Gaelg) shamyr aarlagh / shamyr aarlee = kitchen, galley, caboose
shamyreen aarlee = kitchenette
sorn aarlee = kitchen range
greieyn aarlee = kitchen utensils

Etymology: from shamyr (room) and aarlee (to cook, prepare, train) [source].

Incidentally, one of the rivers near Bangor is called Afon Cegin (see below), which I’ve always thought meant ‘Kitchen River’, and wondered what it had to do with kitchens. However, cegin also means green woodpecker or jay, and is cognate with the Breton kegin (jay). Or it can mean ridge or hog’s back. The River of the Green Woodpecker / Jay, sounds more poetic and likely than the Kitchen River.

Afon River Cegin

Sources: Wiktionary, Am Faclair Beag, Online Manx Dictionary,, eDIL – Electronic Dictionary of the Irish Language, In Dúil Bélrai English – Old Irish glossary, Geiriadur Prifysgol Cymru, Gerlyver Kernewek, Dictionaire Favereau, TermOfis, English – ProtoCeltic WordList (PDF), Etymological Dictionary Of Proto Celtic

One thought on “Kitchens

  1. In Swedish, ‘kitchen’ is ‘kök’, which comes from the same root as the Celtic words
    (Latin ‘cucina’ or ‘coquo’).

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