Lies and Deceit

Words for deceit, treachery, conspiracy and related things in Celtic languages.

Colonial Conspiritors

Words marked with a * are reconstructions.

Proto-Celtic *mratrom = deceit, betrayal, treachery
Old Irish (Goídelc) mrath [ˈmr͈aθ] = deceiving, betraying
marnaid [ˈmar͈n͈ɨðʲ] = to betray, deceive, delude
Middle Irish (Gaoidhealg) brath =
mairnid = to betray, deceive, delude
Irish (Gaeilge) brath [bˠɾˠɑh/bˠɾˠah] = perception, feeling, detection, spying, betrayal, expectation, intention, dependence, reliance
braith [bˠɾˠa/bˠɾˠaç] = to perceive, feel, spy out, note, betray, sense, intend, expect, depend on
braiteach = perceptive, alert, wary, sensitive, treacherous
braistint = perception
braiteoir = sensor
brathadóir = betrayer, spy, informer
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) brath [brah] = betraying, giving away, betrayal, knowledge
brathadair [brahədɪrʲ] = betrayer, informer, traitor
brathadh = betraying, giving away, betrayal, treason, informing on
brathach [brahəx] = traitorous
brathaich = (to) betray, inform on
Manx (Gaelg) brah = betray, disclose, betrayal, disclosure
brahder = detector, traitor, betrayer, informer
braheyder = betrayer, traitor
Proto-Brythonic *brad = treachery, betrayal, deceit
Middle Welsh (Kymraec) brat, brad = treachery, betrayal, deceit, guile, ruse, conspiracy, treason
bradu = to commit treachery, betray, deceive, plot, conspire
bradedic = treacherous, deceitful
bradaỽc, bradouc, bradog, bradoc = treacherous, deceitful, guileful, false
bratwr, bradỽr, bradwr = traitor, betrayer
bradychu, bredychu = to betray, be disloyal, deceive
Welsh (Cymraeg) brad [braːd] = treachery, betrayal, deceit, guile, ruse, conspiracy, treason
bradaf, bradu = to commit treachery, betray, deceive, plot, conspire
bradedig = treacherous, deceitful
bradog = treacherous, deceitful, guileful, false, traitor, deserter
bradwr, bradydd = traitor, betrayer
bradwriad = conspiracy
bradychu = to betray, be disloyal, deceive, reveal unintentionally
Middle Cornish (Cernewec) bras = conspiracy, plot (?)
Cornish (Kerneweg) bras = conspiracy, plot
brasa = to conspire, plot
braser, brasores = conspirator, plotter
Old Breton (Brethonog) brat = deception, betrayal
Middle Breton (Brezonec) barat = deception, betrayal
Breton (Brezhoneg) barad [ˈbɑː.rat] = deception, betrayal, perfidy
baradañ = to betray
barader = traitor
baraderezh = treachery

Etymology: from Proto-Celtic marnati (to betray), possibly from Proto-Indo-European *mr̥-né-h₂-ti from *merh₂- (to crumble, destroy), which is also the root of merja (to squash, crush, bruise) in Icelandic [source].

Proto-Celtic *brenkā = lie
Old Irish (Goídelc) bréc [bʲrʲeːɡ] = lie, falsehood, deception, exaggeration
brécach [ˈbʲrʲeːɡax] = lying, false, deceitful
brécaid = to deceive, entice, seduce
brécairecht = cunning, deceit, deception
Middle Irish (Gaoidhealg) bréc, brég = falsehood, lie, deception
brécach, brégach = lying, deceitful, counterfeit, false, entice, coax
brécaid, bréicid = to deceive, lead astray, entice, seduce, decoy
brécaire = liar, deceiver, flatterer, hypocrite
brécán = plaything, toy
Irish (Gaeilge) bréag [bʲɾʲeːɡ] = lie, falsehood, false; to cajole, coax
bréagach [ˈbʲɾʲeːɡəx] = liar, lying, false
bréagadh = coaxing, cajolery
bréagadóir = liar, deceiver, cajoler, wheedler
bréagadóireacht = falsehood, deceit, cajolery, wheedling
bréagán [ˈbʲɾʲeːɡɑːnˠ] = toy, plaything
bréagchéadfa = hallucination
Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) breug [brʲiag] = falsehood, lie, untruth, deceiving, artificial, fake, false
breugach [brʲiagəx] = deceitful, dishonest, false, lying
breugadair [brʲiagədɪrʲ] = liar
breugadh [brʲiəgəɣ] = coaxing, cajoling, enticing, soothing
breugag [brʲiagag] = little lie, lying woman
breugaireachd [brʲiəgɛrʲəxg] = habit of lying, mendacity
Manx (Gaelg) breag = lie, fallacy, sham, fiction, invention, untruth
breagagh = lying, false, imitation, extravagant, fictious, spurious
breageraght = equivocation, lying
breagerey = liar, romancer, storyteller, dissembler
breageyder = fabler, fibber, leg-puller
breagerys = lying
breigey = to beguile, cajole, coax, entice, decoy, lure, persuade, seduce, wheedle

Etymology: from Proto-Indo-European bʰrenḱ- from *merh₂- (to deviate, corrupt) [source].

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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

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