There are tens of thousands of Gaelic speakers in the Lowlands.
An Donas

Dear An Donas,

Thanks for your reply.

Whichever language you choose to speak to your children in is your business, and I applaud you for teaching them the Gaelic name for Linlithgow et al.

As I stated in my piece, I’m in favour of signage where it’s appropriate. Perhaps it’s around the word ‘appropriate’ where we will differ. I do not see the invention of a Gaelic name, just to tick a legislative-compliance box, as particularly appropriate or justified. As I also said to Catriona in another response, the issue of translation is a minefield. Many names are of unknown provenance, and it is unwise to commit to print what is, at best, guesswork.

I take the point (indeed, I make it) that having Gaelic on high-profile signs is a good way of installing it in the national psyche. However, how is this installation to be done for other strains of Scottish linguistic history? Surely there’s room for more than just Gaelic?

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