Scottish Gaelic: Griffin, Gryphon

Discussion in 'Other Languages' started by griffinamy, Sep 4, 2012.

  1. griffinamy New Member

    Hello, I have received a school assignment to research my name as it relates to my family ancestry.
    So, my name is Griffin and my mother's family has been traced to Scotland. I have searched the internet and found the Scottish Gaelic for the word Griffin (Gryphon) is "Griobh".
    Each student must make a short presentation but I have no idea how to pronounce Griobh. Can anybody help? Thanks so much!
  2. Copperknickers Senior Member

    Scotland - Scots and English
    It is pronounced something like 'Greev'. However, your surname is not of Gaelic origin, it is of French origin. Griffons are not a part of Gaelic culture or folklore, griobh is just a translation from the French.
  3. L'irlandais

    L'irlandais Senior Member

    Dreyeckland/Alsace region
    Ireland: English-speaking ♂
    Hi Amy,
    Welcome to the forum. :) Although I do speak Irish, I wouldn't pretend to tell you how to pronounce it properly. Just speak it with confidence, your class mates will not know any different.

    The genalogy of Griffin isn't as straight forward as Copperknickers suggests it to be. :warning: This is a surname of at least three distinct origins, English, Irish &/or Welsh.
    Since you mention Scottish Gaelic origins, then the Irish branch of the family is the most likely to be of interest to you. (Wikipedia has a nice map clearly showing this.)
    The GRIFFIN-etc Surname Project is another interesting on-line resource.

    Good luck.
  4. griffinamy New Member

    Hello L'irlandais and Cooperknickers,
    Thank you so much for your replies!
    My name is a little confusing. People always think Amy is my first name but it is Griffin. My last name (surname) is Amy . . . a little strange. My dad has traced "Amy" back several generations to "Emich" which came from Germany. His mom's side of the family is the Scottish side. Her last name was Fullerton...which appears to come from Ayr in Scotland but I haven't been able to find the direct connection yet. The assignment was to pronounce your given first name as it relates to your family history. That's why I wanted to look at the Scottish Gaelic for Griffin (Griobh). So, do you think I could just say "Greev" and smile? To make sure, is that said Grr-eve (like grieve)? This is very fun and makes me want to dive into more of my Scottish side! Thanks again!
  5. Copperknickers Senior Member

    Scotland - Scots and English
    I see. Well if its your first name, then we can forget the debacle over the surname origin (though I must apologise, I made an incorrect assumption: it seems the word was probably borrowed from Latin rather than French, and does have a history as a Gaelic surname). If all you want to do is find the Scottish version of 'Griffin' (and you don't want to simply use a Scottish accent, which is admittedly less exciting and less likely since most Americans are descended from Highlanders) then 'griobh', pronounced as you say, would be fine.

    There are numerous different accents of Scottish Gaelic. I'm not a native speaker of it, so I'm not saying my version is completely correct, however it is a pronounciation that follows the basic rules of Gaelic pronounciation, so is better than just making it up completely.

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