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SAMHLACHA (SIMILES) A-B

Cnuasaithe ag Donncha ÓBroin; An Dámhscoil Nua
(Compiled by Donncha ÓBroin; The New Bardic School)

A | B

A

Chomh hamh le taos As raw as dough
amh=raw/uncooked, taos=dough/paste
Chomh haibí le huan As frisky as a lamb
(i.e., As fresh as a daisy)

aibí=quick/nimble, uan=lamb
Chomh haibí le spideog As frisky as a robin
(i.e., As fresh as a daisy)

aibí=quick/nimble, spideog=robin
Chomh haerach le druid As light-hearted/chirpy as a starling
aerach=light-hearted/chirpy, druid=starling
Chomh haerach le meannán As light-hearted/chirpy as a kid (goat)
aerach=light-hearted/chirpy, meannán=kid(goat)
Chomh haerach le rí As light-hearted/cheerful as a king
aerach=light-hearted/cheerful, rí=king
Chomh haosta le tor As old as a bush
aosta=old/aged, tor=bush
Chomh haosta leis an gceo As old as the mist
aosta=old/aged, ceo=mist/fog
Chomh haraiciseach le meannán ráithe As hasty/short-tempered as a three-month-old kid
araiciseach=hasty/short-tempered, meannán=goat/kid, ráithe=season/three
Chomh hard le binn an tí As high as the gable of the house
ard=high, binn=gable
Chomh hard le dhá hata As high as two hats
dhá=two, hata=hat
Chomh hard leis an spéir As high as the sky
Irish Bible

ard=high, spéir=sky
Chomh hard leis an iolar As high as the eagle
Irish Bible

ard=high, iolar=eagle
Chomh ata le frog sa bhfómhar As swollen as a frog in the autumn
ata=swollen, fómhar=autumn

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B

Chomh balbh le cloch As dumb as a stone
balbh=dumb/mute, cloch=stone
Chomh balbh le trumpa gan teanga As dumb as a trumpet without a tongue
balbh=dumb/mute, trumpa=trumpet, teanga=tonge
Chomh bán le mo léine As white as my shirt
(ex., of someone ill)

bán=white, léine=shirt
Chomh bán le bainne As white as milk
(impersonal)

bán=white, bainne=milk
Chomh baoth le lao na bó As foolish as the cow’s calf
baoth=foolish, lao=calf
Chomh beag le dreoilín As small as a wren
beag=small, dreoilín=wren
Chomh beag le luch fhéir As small as a field mouse
beag=small, luch=mouse
Chomh beannaithe leis an sagart As blessed/holy as the priest
beannaithe=holy/blessed, sagart=priest
Chomh beannaithe le naomh As blessed/holy as a saint
beannaithe=holy/blessed, naomh=saint
Chomh beathaithe le broc As well-fed (plump) as a badger
beathaithe=well-fed/plump, broc=badger
Chomh beo le h-easóg As lively as a weasel
beo=lively/live, easóg=weasel
Chomh beo le sionnach As lively as a fox
This is a simile from the Old-Irish period)

beo=alive, sionnach=fox
Chomh beo leis an dtine As lively as the fire
beo=lively/live, tine=fire
Chomh binn leis an fhuiseog As sweet as a lark
binn=sweet, fuiseog=lark
Chomh binn le smóilín As sweet as a thrush
binn=sweet, smóilín=diminuative of smólach, thrush
Chomh binn le ceol na n-éan As sweet as the music of the birds
binn=sweet (sound), ceol=music, éan=bird
Chomh bocht leis an deoir As poor as the drop
bocht=poor, deoir=drop
Chomh bocht le bairneach As poor as a limpet
bocht=poor, bairneach=limpet
Chomh bodhar le slis As deaf as a chip/sliver
bodhar=deaf, slis=chip/sliver
Chomh bodhar le cloch As deaf as a stone
bodhar=deaf, cloch=chip/sliver
Chomh bog le bogán As soft as an egg without it’s shell
bog=soft, bogán=boiled egg without it’s shell
Chomh bog le him As soft as butter
bog=soft, im=butter
Chomh breabhsánta le glasóg As sprightly as a wagtail
breabhsánta=sprightly, glasóg=wagtail, a small active bird
Chomh bréagach le táilliúir As false/flattering as a tailor
bréagach=false/flattering, táilliúir=tailor
Chomh bréan le pluais an mhada rua As foul/putrid as a fox’s cave
bréan=foul/putrid, pluais=cave, mada rua=fox
Chomh buan leis na flaithis As lasting as heaven
(Irish Bible)

buan=lasting, flaithis=heaven
Chomh buan le neamh As lasting as heaven
(Irish Bible)

buan=lasting, neamh=heaven
Chomh buí le buachalán As yellow as ragwort
(Irish Bible)

buí=yellow, buachalán=ragwort
Chomh buí le hór As yellow as gold
(This is a simile from the Old-Irish period)

buí=yellow, ór=gold

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SAMHLACHA (SIMILES) C-D

Cnuasaithe ag Donncha ÓBroin; An Dámhscoil Nua
(Compiled by Donncha ÓBroin; The New Bardic School)

C | D

C

Chomh cabach le giofóg As “gabby”/loquacious as a gypsy
cabach=babbling/talkative, giofóg=gypsy
Chomh caite le scian fheamainne As worn/thin/emaciated as a stalk of seaweed
(Said of a person after illness or hunger)

caite=worn/emaciated, scian fheamainne=stalk of seaweed after it’s leaf is worn away
Chomh caite le cú As thin as a hound
caite=thin/worn/emaciated, cú=hound
Chomh caite le coinlín As worn/wizened as a cut corn-stalk
(Said of an old person’s fingers. Ex., “Bhí a méara chomh caite le coinlí.”)

caite=worn/wizened, coinlín=cut corn-stalks/stubble
Chomh calma le Fionn Mac Cumhaill As brave as Fion Mac Cumhaill
calma=brave, Fionn Mac Cumhaill=legendary leader of the Fianna
Chomh cam le hadharc reithe As crooked as a ram’s horn
cam=crooked, reithe=ram
Chomh cam le tuar ceatha As crooked/bent as a rainbow
(Literally, portent of a shower)

cam=crooked, tuar ceatha=rainbow
Chomh cam le cos deiridh an mhadra As crooked as a dog’s hind leg
cam=crooked, cos=leg, deireadh=end, madra=dog
Chomh cantalach le mála easóg As bad-tempered as a bag of weasels
cantalach=bad-tempered, mála=bag, easóg=weasel
Chomh caoch le smután As blind as a stump
caoch=blind, smután=stump
Chomh caoch le cearc As blind as a hen
caoch=blind, cearc=hen
Chomh caol le cú As slender as a greyhound
caol=slender cú=greyhound
Chomh cas le carr cruite As curly as the shaft of a harp
(This is a simile from the Old-Irish period referring to a person’s hair)

cas=curly/winding, carr=an old word meaning a shaft, cruit=harp
Chomh casta le duisín snáith As complicated as a hank of yarn
casta=complicated, duisín=hank/length, snáth=thread/yarn
Chomh casta le hadharc gabhair As twisted/complicated as a goat’s horn
casta=twisted/complicated, adharc=horn, gabhar=goat
Chomh ceanndána le muc As stubborn as a pig
ceanndána=stubborn muc=pig
Chomh ceanndána le bodóg stailceach As stubborn as a sulky heifer
(Irish Bible)

ceanndána=stubborn, bodóg=heifer, stailceach=sulky
Chomh céasta le scadán rósta As tormented as a roasted herring
céasta=tormented, scadán=herring
Chomh ciallmhar le Solamh As sensible as Solomon
ciallmhar=sensible, Solamh=Solomon (Biblical king)
Chomh cinnte is a ndearna Dia fataí beaga As sure as God made little potatoes
cinnte=sure/certain, fataí=potatoes
Chomh cinnte is a leanann boige earraigh cuisne geimhridh As certain as spring softness follows winter ice
cinnte=sure/certain, earrach=spring, geimhreadh=winter
Chomh cinnte is atá cros ar asal As certain as there is cross on a donkey
cinnte=sure,certain, cros=cross, asal=donkey
Chomh cinnte le breacadh an lae As certain as the dawn
cinnte=sure/certain, breacadh an lae=dawn
Chomh cinnte le sioc As certain as frost
cinnte=sure/certain, sioc=frost
Chomh ciúin le linn As quiet as a pool
ciúin=quiet, linn=pool
Chomh ciúin leis an reilg As quiet as the graveyard
ciúin=quiet, reilg=graveyard
Chomh ciúin leis an uaigh As quiet as the grave
ciúin=quiet, uaigh=grave
Chomh clúdaithe le poll fataí As well covered as a potato hole (clamp)
clúdaithe=covered, poll fataí=potato hole for storing potatoes in the ground
Chomh cnaptha le gráinneog As rolled up/in a lump as a hedgehog
cnaptha=rolled up, gráinneog=hedgehog
Chomh cneasta le sagart As decent as a priest
cneasta=decent/nice, sagart=priest
Chomh colgach le heasóg As angry/bristling as a weasel
colgach=angry/bristling, easóg=weasel
Chomh corrthónach le cearc ar ghreideall As fidgety as a hen on a griddle
corrthó=fidgety, cearc=hen, greideall=griddle
Chomh corrthónach leis an ngaoth Mhárta As fidgety as the March wind
corrthónach=fidgety, gaoth=wind, Márta=month of March
Chomh críonna leis na cait As wise as the cats
críonna=wise/old (age and wisdom are regarded as synonymous)
Chomh crosta le cat fiáin As cross as a wild cat
crosta=cross, cat=cat, fiáin=wild
Chomh crua le cloch As hard as a stone
crua=hard, cloch=stone
Chomh cruachroíach le hostraisí an fhásaigh As hard-hearted as the ostriches of the desert
(Irish Bible)

cruachroíach=hard-hearted, ostrais=ostrich, fásach=desert
Chomh cruinn le liathróid As round as a ball
cruinn=round, liathróid=ball
Chomh cruinn le hubh loin As round as a bird’s egg
(Said of a person’s eyes; from the Old-Irish period)

cruinn=round, lon=bird (particularly a blackbird)
Chomh cúlánta le cailín As shy as a girl
cúlánta=shy, cailín=girl

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D

Chomh daibhir le daol dubh As poor as a beetle (i.e., as poor as a churchmouse)
daibhir=poor, daol dubh=black beetle
Chomh dáigh le diamaint As unyielding as a diamond
(Irish Bible)

dáigh=obstinate/unyielding, diamaint=diamond
Chomh daingean le bun crainn As firm as the base of a tree
daingean=firm/solid, bun=base, crann=tree
Chomh dall le bonn do bhróige As blind as the sole of your shoe
dall=blind, bróg=shoe
Chomh dall le cearc san oíche As blind as a hen in the night
(Said of people who find themselves suddenly in the dark)

dall=blind, cearc=hen, oíche=night
Chomh dána le muc As bold as a pig
dána=bold, muc=pig
Chomh dána leis an diabhal As bold as the devil
dána=bold, diabhal=devil
Chomh daor le h-im na Fraince As dear as French butter
(A simile that was coined in Co. Down in the 18th Century)

daor=dear/expensive, im=butter, an Fhrainc=France
Chomh dealraitheach le solas na gréine As respendent as the sun
dealraitheach= resplendent, solas na gréine=light of the sun
Chomh dealraitheach lena athrach As likely as not
dealraitheach=likely/resplendent, athrach=change/alternative
Chomh dearg le caor As red as a berry
dearg=red, caor=berry
Chomh dearg le fuil As red as blood
dearg=red, fuil=blood
Chomh dearg leis an rós As red as the rose
dearg=red, rós=rose
Chomh dearmadach leis an Diabhal As forgetful as the Devil
dearmadach=forgetful, Diabhal=Devil
Chomh deas le bláth bealtaine As nice/lovely as a May flower
deas=nice, bláth=flower, Bealtaine=May
Chomh deilgneach le gráinneog As prickly as a hedgehog
deilgneach=prickly, gráinneog=hedgehog
Chomh díbhirceach le beach As ardent/eager as a bee
díbhirceach=industrious, beach=bee
Chomh dícheallach leis na beacha As eager/industrious as a bee
dícheallach=doing one’s best, beach=bee
Chomh díomhaoin le damh san eadra As idle as an ox (male) at the midday milking
díomhaoin=idle, eadra=midday milking
Chomh díomhaoin le ladhraicín an phíobaire As idle as a piper’s little finger
díomhaoin=idle, ladhraicín=little finger
Chomh díonmhar le buidéal As watertight as a bottle
díonmhar=waterproof, buidéal=bottle
Chomh díreach le bradán i lár na habhann As straight as a salmon in the middle of the river
díreach=straight, bradán=salmon, lár=middle, abha=river
Chomh díreach le coinneall As straight as a candle
díreach=straight, coinneall=candle
Chomh díreach le feag As straight as a rush
díreach=straight, feag=rush
Chomh díreach le riail As straight as a ruler
díreach=straight, riail= ruler
Chomh díreach le slat As straight as a rod
díreach=straight, slat=(ram)rod
Chomh díscréideach le bosca na faoistine As discreet as the confession box
díscréideach=discreet, bosca=box, faoistin=confession
Chomh dócha lena athrach As likely as not
dócha=likely, athrach=change/alternative
Chomh domhain leis an fharraige As deep as the sea
domhain=deep, farraige=sea
Chomh donnbhuí le cnó capall As yellow-brown as a chestnut
(Expression commenting on a tanned appearance. Ex., “Bhí a chraiceann chomh donnbhuí le cnó capall.” Irish forms new colors by combining existing ones.)

donn=brown, buí=yellow, cnó capall=chestnut
Chomh doshásaithe leis an mbás As insatiable as death
(Irish Bible)

doshásaithe=insatiable, bás=death
Chomh dubh le cleite an fhéich As black as the raven’s feather
dubh=black, cleite=feather, fiach=raven
Chomh dubh le pic As black as pitch
dubh=black, pic=pitch
Chomh dubh leis a mbás As black as death
(Old-Irish period)

dubh=black, bás=death
Chomh dubh leis an daol As black as a beetle
dubh=black, daol=beetle
Chomh dubh leis an tsúiche As black as soot
dubh=black, súiche=soot
Chomh dúr doicheallach le colúr céileachais a mbeadh cochall air le ceann dá threibh As dour/churlish as a courting pigeon whose hackles were up with with one of his own tribe
dúr=obstinate/dour, doicheallach=unhospitable, colúr=pigeon, céileachas=courting, cochall=hackles, treibh=tribe
Chomh dúr le hasal As obstinate as an ass
dúr=obstinate, asal=ass
Chomh dúr le slis As stupid as a chip
dúr=stupid/obstinate, slis=chip/slice

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SAMHLACHA (SIMILES) E-F

Cnuasaithe ag Donncha ÓBroin; An Dámhscoil Nua (Compiled by Donncha ÓBroin; The New Bardic School)

E | F

E

Chomh héadrom le cleite As light as a feather
éadrom=light, cleite=feather
Chomh héadrom le sop As light as a straw
éadrom=light, sop=wisp of straw
Chomh héadrom le lon ar sceach As light as a blackbird on a thornbush
éadrom=light, lon=bird/blackbird, sceach=thornbush/bramble
Chomh éagánta le cearc As stupid as a hen
éagánta=stupid/silly, cearc=hen
Chomh héasca le meannán As agile/”easy” as a kid (young goat)
éadrom=agile/light, meannán=kid

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F

Chomh fada le Domhnach fliuch As long as a wet Sunday
fada=long, Domhnach=Sunday
Chomh fada le mo lámh As long as my arm
fada=long lámh=hand
Chomh fadálach le meánlae mall As tedious as a slow midday
fadálach=tedious, meánlae=midday, mall=slow/late
Chomh fairsing le féar As plentiful as grass
fairsing=plentiful, féar=grass
Chomh fairsing le gaineamh an trá As plentiful as the sand of the beach
fairsing=plentiful, gaineamh=sand, trá=beach
Chomh fairsing le móin As plentiful as turf
fairsing=plentiful, móin=turf
Chomh fairsing le míoltóga san fhómhair As numerous/plentiful as midges in the Autumn
fairsing=plentiful, míoltóga=midges, fómhar=autumn
Chomh faiteach le coinín As timid as a rabbit
faiteach=timid, coinín=rabbit
Chomh falsa le hasal As lazy as a donkey
falsa=lazy, asal=ass/donkey
Chomh fealltach le Sasanach As treacherous as an Englishman
fealltach=treacherous, Sasanach=English person
Chomh fiáin le fia na mbeann As wild/untamed as the deer of the mountains
fiáin=wild/untamed, fia=deer, beann=maountain/peak
Chomh fíor leis an tSoiscéal As true as the Gospel
fíor=true, soiscéal=Gospel
Chomh foighneach le cat As patient as a cat
foighneach=patient, cat=cat
Chomh foighneach le Iób As patient as Job
foighneach=patient, Iób=Job
Chomh folamh le sac As empty as a sack
folamh=empty, sac=sack
Chomh folláin le breac As healthy as a trout
folláin=healthy, breac=trout
Chomh frithir le driseog As abrasive (of personality) as a thorn-bush
frithir=tearing, driseog=thorn-bush
Chomh fuar le sioc As cold as frost
fuar=cold, sioc=frost
Chomh fuar leis an éag As cold as death (deadly cold)
fuar=cold, éag=death
Chomh fuar leis an mbás As cold as death
fuar=cold, bás=death

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SAMHLACHA (SIMILES) G-I

Cnuasaithe ag Donncha ÓBroin; An Dámhscoil Nua
(Compiled by Donncha ÓBroin; The New Bardic School)

G | I

G

Chomh gann le hairgead As scarce as money
gann=scarce, airgead=money
Chomh gann le sméara i mBealtaine As scarce as berries in May
gann=scarce, Bealtaine=month of May
Chomh garbh le coirt crann darach As rough as the bark of an oak tree
garbh=rough, coirt=bark, dair=oak (darach in the genitive)
Chomh gasta le cú As quick as a hound
gasta=quick, cú=hound
Chomh gasta le gaoth Mhárta As quick as a March wind
gasta=quick, gaoth=wind, Márta=month of March
Chomh geal le cailc As white as chalk
(Said of someone after fright, etc.)

geal=bright/white, cailc=chalk
Chomh geal le canach an tsléibhe As white as bog cotton
geal=white/bright, canach an tsléibhe=bog cotton
Chomh geal le cúr sceite As bright as blown froth
geal=bright/white, cúr=froth/foam, sceite=blown
Chomh geal le sneachta As white as snow
(Irish Bible)

geal=bright/white, sneachta=snow
Chomh geal le táth lín As white as a tuft of lint
geal=white/bright, táth=tuft/bunch, lín=lint/flax
Chomh geal leis an lil As bright as a lily
geal=bright/white, lil=lily
Chomh géar le bó mhaol As sharp as a hornless cow (i.e., blunt)
géar=sharp, bó=cow, maol=bald/hornless
Chomh géar le nimh As sharp as poison
géar=sharp, nimh=poison
Chomh géar le snáthaid As sharp as a needle
géar=sharp, snáthaid=needle
Chomh géar le súil chailín i lár cuideachtain As sharp as the eye of a girl in the middle of a gathering
géar=sharp, súil=eye, cailín=girl, cuideachta=gathering/amusement
Chomh géarchúiseach le nathair nimhe As “wise”/astute as a serpent
(Irish Bible)

géarchúisteach=astute, nathair=snake, nimh=poison
Chomh géarradharcach le gainéad As sharpeyed as a gannet
géarradharcach=sharpeyed, gainéad=gannet
Chomh glan le criostal As clean as crystal
glan-clean, criostal=crystal
Chomh glan le fíoruisce As clean as springwater
glan=clean, fíoruisce=springwater
Chomh glan le sagart As innocent as a priest
(In this case, glan means not guilty=clear)

glan=innocent (not guilty), sagart=priest
Chomh glan le scilling As clean/clear as a shilling
glan=clean/clear, scilling=schilling
Chomh glan le h-úll As clean as an apple
glan=clean, úll=apple
Chomh glan ó mhilleán le haingeal ó Dhia As clear of guilt as an angel of God
(Irish Bible)

glan=clear/clean, milleán=guilt/blame
Chomh glas le bun cuilinn As green as a holly stump
(Old-Irish period)

glas=green, bun=stump/stock, cuileann=holly
Chomh glas le féar As green as grass
glas=green, féar=grass
Chomh glas le geamhar As green as a springing shoot
glas=féar, geamhar=springing shoot
Chomh glas le spíonán/spÍonóg As green as Gooseberry
glas=green, spíonán/spíonóg=Gooseberry
Chomh glégeal leis an solas As brilliant as the light
(Irish Bible)

glégeal=pure white/brilliant, solas=light
Chomh glórach le cearc ghoir As noisy/vociferous as a broody hen
glórach=noisy/vociferous, cearc ghoir=broody hen
Chomh gnóthach le lúidín an phíobaire As busy as the piper’s little finger (ironical, not busy at all)
gnóthach=busy, lúidín=little finger, píobaire=piper
Chomh goirt le sáile As salty as sea water
goirt=salty, sáile=sea water
Chomh gorm le plúirín As blue as a bluebell
gorm=blue, plúirín=bluebell
Chomh gránna leis an diabhal As ugly as the Devil
gránna=ugly, diabhal=Devil
Chomh greamaithe le bairneach den chloch As stuck as a limpet to the rock
greamaithe=stuck, bairneach=limpet, cloch=rock
Chomh guagach leis an ngealach As fickle as the moon
(Irish Bible)

guagach=fickle, gealach=moon

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I

Chomh hiomadúil leis an dreoilín teaspaigh As numerous as the grasshoppers
(Irish Bible)

iomadúil=numerous, dreoilín teaspaigh=grasshopper
Chomh hiontach le sneachta dearg As wonderful/strange as red snow
iontach=wonderful/surprising, sneachta=snow, dearg=red
Chomh híseal leis an talamh As low as the ground
íseal=low, talamh=ground

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SAMHLACHA (SIMILES) L-M

Cnuasaithe ag Donncha ÓBroin; An Dámhscoil Nua (Compiled by Donncha ÓBroin; The New Bardic School)

L | M

L

Chomh lag le cearc As weak as a hen/chicken
lag=weak, cearc=hen/chicken
Chomh lag le héan gé Lit., as weak as a gosling
(Said after severe illness)

éan=young bird of any species/bird, gé=goose
Chomh lag le héan i mbarrach As weak as an ailing chick
(Lit., as weak as a bird (chick) in tow (of flax, hemp))

éan=bird, barrach=tow
Chomh lag le heilit i mbarrach As weak as a hind in a thicket (i.e., trapped)
(Irish Bible)

eilit=doe/hind, barrach=thicket
Chomh lag le long ar chuan gan tonn As weak as a ship on a harbour without a wave
lag=weak, long=ship, cuan=harbour, tonn=wave
Chomh lag le piscín As weak as a kitten
(Referring to physical strength)

lag=weak, piscín=kitten
Chomh lag leis an uisce As weak as water
(Said of a drink, etc.)

lag=weak, uisce=water
Chomh láidir le capall As strong as a horse
láidir=strong, capall=horse
Chomh láidir le gearrán As strong as a horse
láidir=strong, gearrán=literally a gelding, but in the North often meaning a horse
Chomh láidir le Goll mac Mórna As strong as Goll mac Mórna
(character from tales of the Fianna)
láidir=strong
Chomh láidir le tarbh As strong as a bull
láidir=strong, tarbh=bull
Chomh láidir leis na daracha As strong as the oaks
(Irish Bible)

láidir=strong, dair=oak, daracha=oaks (plural)
Chomh lán le mála píbe As full as a pipebag
lán=full, mála=bag, píb=pipe
Chomh lán le hubh As full as an egg
lán=full, ubh=egg
Chomh lán leis an bhfarraige As full as the sea
lán=full, farraige=sea
Chomh leamh le uisce portaigh As insipid as bog water
leamh=insipid/lifeless, uisce=water, portach=bog
Chomh leathan leis an bhfarraige As broad as the sea
(Irish Bible)

leathan=broad/wide, farraige=sea
Chomh leisciúil le hasal As lazy as an ass
leisciúil=lazy, asal=ass
Chomh leisciúil le cú As lazy as a hound
leisciúil=lazy, cú=hound
Chomh leisciúil leis an nGiolla Deacair As lazy as the Giolla Deacair
(character from folklore)

leisciúil=lazy
Chomh leitheadach leis na cuacha As widespread as the cuckoo
leitheadach=widespread, cuacha (plural of cuach)=cuckoo
Chomh leochaileach leis an éan turcaí As frail/tender/fragile as a young turkey
leochaileach=frail/fragile, éan=bird (young of bird), turcaí=turkey
Chomh liath le broc As grey as a badger
liath=grey, broc=badger
Chomh líonmhar le gaineamh na trá As numerous as the sands of the beach
(Irish Bible)

líonmhar=numerous, gaineamh=sand
Chomh líonmhar le réaltaí neimhe As numerous as the stars of Heaven
(Irish Bible)

líonmhar=numerous, réaltaí=stars
Chomh líonmhar leis na corrmhíola As numerous as the midges
líonmhar=numerous, corrmhíola= midges
Chomh lom le croí do bhoise As bare as the palm of your hand
lom=bare, croí=heart, bos=palm of hand
Chomh lom le croí mo bhoise As bare as the middle of my palm
lom= bare/thin, croí=heart/center, bos=palm
Chomh lom le gé bhearrtha As bare as a plucked goose
lom=bare, gé=goose, bearrtha=plucked/shaved
Chomh lom leis an uisce As dilute as water
lom=thin/bare, uisce=water
Chomh luachmhar le hór As valuable as gold
luachmhar=valuable, ór=gold
Chomh luaineach le dreancaid As jumpy as a flea
luaineach=jumpy, dreancaid=flea
Chomh luath le cú As fast as a hound
luath=fast, cú=hound
Chomh luath le giorria As fast as a hare
luath=fast, giorria=hare
Chomh luath le hintinn mná idir beirt fhear As fast as a woman’s mind between two men
luath=fast, intinn=mind, mná=genitive of “bean” (woman), beirt=two people, fear=man

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M

Chomh macánta leis an sagart As honest as the priest
macánta=honest, sagart=priest
Chomh maisithe le pictiúr As pretty as a picture
maisithe=decorated/pretty, pictiúr=picture
Chomh maith le duine As good as a person (i.e., as good as the next)
maith=good, duine=person
Chomh maith lena fhocal As good as his word
maith=good, focal=word
Chomh mall le seilide As slow as a snail
mall=slow, seilide=snail
Chomh maol le hubh As bald as an egg
maol=bald, ubh=egg
Chomh marbh le hart As dead as a stone
marbh=dead, art=stone
Chomh marbh le scadán As dead as a herring
marbh=dead, scadán=herring
Chomh meabhrach breabhsach le seabhac aille As deep-thinking and sprightly as a cliff-hawk
meabhrach=mindfull/deepthinking,
breabhsach=sprightly (especially in old age), seabhac=hawk, aill=cliff
Chomh mear le míol Márta As quick as a March Louse
mear=quick, míol=louse/bug/creature, Márta=month of March
Chomh meidhreach le dreoilín teaspaigh As cheerful as a grasshopper
meidhreach=cheerful, dreoilín teaspaigh=grasshopper
Chomh meidhreach le héan As cheerful as a bird
meidhreach=cheerful, éan=bird
Chomh meidhreach le héan binne As cheerful as a mountain bird
meidhreach=cheerful, éan=bird, binn=mountain peak/gable of house
Chomh meidhreach le meannán míosa As cheerful as a month-old kid (animal)
meidhreach=cheerful, meannán=kid (animal), míosa=genitive of “mí” (month)
Chomh milis le mil As sweet as honey
milis=sweet, mil=honey
Chomh mín le cat As meek as a cat
mín=meek (i.e., smooth of manner), cat=cat
Chomh mín le gloine As smooth as glass
(Said of clothes after ironing)

mín=smooth, gloine=glass
Chomh mín le plúr As fine as flour
mín=small, fine plúr=flour
Chomh mín le síoda As fine/smooth as silk
mín=smooth, síoda=silk
Chomh mín le smúit na talún As fine as the dust of the earth
mín=smooth, smúit=dust, talún=genitive of “talamh” (land/earth)
Chomh mín le snaois As fine as snuff
mín=small/fine, snaois=snuff
Chomh mín macánta leis an uan As placid and as honest as a lamb
(Said of a person’s temperment)

mín=smooth/placid, macánta=honest (i.e., not devious), uan=lamb
Chomh mínáireach le muc As shameless as a pig
mínáireach=shameless, muc=pig
Chomh minic is atá méara ar do lámh As often as there is fingers on your hand
minic=often, méara=fingers, lámh=hand
Chomh místiúrtha le bean As unmanagable as a woman
místiúrtha=unmanagable, bean=woman
Chomh mómhar le luchóg faoi chois an chait As mannerly as a mouse under the cat’s paw
mómhar=mannerly/graceful, cos an chait=cat’s foot
Chomh mór le chéile agus a bhíonn bó le coca féir As “thick” or “close” as a cow and a haycock
mór le chéile=great/close/thick, coca féir=haycock
Chomh mór le teach As big as a house
mór=big, teach=house
Chomh mór le trosc a chaithfí isteach i mbád As big/wide as a cod that would be thrown into a boat
(Said of mouth, as in “D’oscail sí a clab chomh mór le trosc a chaithfí isteach i mbád.)

mór=big, trosc=cod, caithfí=conditional form of “caith” (as one would throw)

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SAMHLACHA (SIMILES) N-R

Cnuasaithe ag Donncha ÓBroin; An Dámhscoil Nua
(Compiled by Donncha ÓBroin; The New Bardic School)

N | O | P | R

N

Chomh neamhnaofa le doras tigh ósta i nGaillimh As unholy as the door of a hostelry in Galway
(of a place)

neamhnaofa=unholy, tigh ósta=hotel/hostelry, Gaillimh=Galway
Chomh neamhurchóideach leis an leanbh As harmless as a child
neamhurchóideach=harmless, leanbh=child
Chomh nimhneach le heasóg As spiteful/touchy as a weasel
(of a place)

nimhneach=spiteful/touchy/”sore”, easóg=weasel

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O

Chomh hólta le píobaire As drunk as a piper
ólta=drunk, píobaire=piper
Chomh hóltach le bean a’ leanna As drunk as a publican (female)
óltach=drunk, bean=woman, leann=porter

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P

Chomh pioctha le sagart As neat/spruce as a priest
pioctha=neat/spruce, sagart=priest
Chomh pollta le criathar As perforated as a sieve
poll=hole, pollta=perforated, criathar=sieve
Chomh postúil le cat siopa As pompous as a shop cat
postúil=pompous, cat=cat, siopa=shop
Chomh preabúil le gaiscíoch As lively/dashing as a warrior
preabúil=lively/dashing, gaiscíoch=warrior

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R

Chomh raidhseach le cuileoga As plentiful as flies
raidhseach=plentiful, cuileoga=flies
Chomh ramhar le rón As fat as a seal
ramhar=fat, rón=seal
Chomh ramhar le mart As fat as an ox
ramhar=fat, mart=ox
Chomh ramhar sa réasún le muc As fat in reasoning as a pig (i.e., As stupid as a pig)
ramhar=fat, réasún=reasoning, muc=pig
Chomh righin le gad As stiff as a willow rod
(Can be used to describe food: Bhí an sean turcaí sin chomh righin le gad. = That old turkey was as tough as an old boot.)
righin=tough/stiff, gad=rod/rope/tie
Chomh righin leis an táthfhéithleann As stiff as a woodbine
righin=tough/stiff, táthfhéithleann=woodbine/honeysuckle
Chomh ríméadach le cat a mbeadh póca air. As overjoyed/jubilant as a cat who had a pocket
ríméadach=overjoyed, cat=cat, póca=pocket
Chomh ríméadach leis na cuacha As overjoyed/jubilant as the cuckoos
ríméadach=overjoyed, cuach=cuckoo
Chomh rite le bogha fidile As taut as a fiddle bow
rite=taut, bogha=bow, fidil=fiddle
Chomh rite le tarbh a mbeifí á thachtadh As distended as a bull that was being strangled
(said of distended eyes)

rite=distended (the idiomatic use of the verb “rith”, run; indicates that all slack has run out and consequently that whatever is referred to is tight, distended, at maximum extension), tarbh=bull, tachtadh=choking/strangling
Chomh rógaireach le mada rua As mischievious as a fox
rógaireach=mischievious, mada rua=fox

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SAMHLACHA (SIMILES) S-U

Cnuasaithe ag Donncha ÓBroin; An Dámhscoil Nua
(Compiled by Donncha ÓBroin; The New Bardic School)

S | T | U

S

Chomh saibhir le Déamar As rich as Déamar
(rich, historical person)

saibhir=rich
Chomh salach le poll As dirty as a hole
salach=dirty, poll=hole
Chomh sámh le liamhán gréine As tranquil as a basking shark
(Fishermen off the west coast of Ireland often come upon basking sharks asleep on the surface of the water, enjoying the summer weather;
whence the English name basking shark)
sámh=tranquil, liamhán gréine=basking shark
Chomh saothrach le beach As industrious as a bee
saothrach=industrious, beach=bee
Chomh sárlíonta le bairille As well-filled as a barrel
sárlíonta=well-filled, bairille=barrel (which can be filled to the brim)
Chomh sásta le bolg lán As contented as a full belly
sásta=satisfied/contented, bolg=belly, lán=full
Chomh sásta le diúc As contented as a duke
sásta=satisfied/contented, diúc=duke
Chomh sásta le píobaire As contented as a piper (i.e., as pleased as can be)
sásta=contented, píobaire=piper
Chomh sásta le rí As contented as a king
sásta=satisfied/contented, rí=king
Chomh scartha is atá an adharc leis an muc As seperate as the horn is from the pig
scartha=seperated, adharc=horn, muc=pig
Chomh sean leis an gceo As old as the fog
sean=old, ceo=fog/mist
Chomh sean le hOisín As old as Oisín
Oisín=hero of the Fianna who went to Tír na nOg with Niamh for three hundred years
Chomh sean leis an Chailleach Bhéarra As old as Cailleach Bhéarra
sean=old, Cailleach Bhéarra=Hag of Beare (mythological old woman famous for her great age)
Chomh seang le luch As lean/meagre as a mouse
seang=lean/meagre, luch=mouse
Chomh searbh le domlas As bitter as bile
(Irish Bible)

searbh=bitter, domlas=bile
Chomh seargtha le giota adhmaid As withered as a piece of wood
(Irish Bible)

seargtha=dry/withered, giota=piece, adhmad=wood
Chomh seascair le luichín i stáca As snug as a little mouse in a stack of hay
seascair=snug, luch=mouse, luichín=little mouse, stáca=stack of hay
Chomh slán leis an mbradán As healthy as a salmon
slán=well/healthy, bradán=salmon (the salmon and trout are regarded as the symbol of health in Irish-speaking culture)
Chomh sleamhain le heascann As slippery as an eel
sleamhain=slippery, eascann=eel
Chomh sleamhain le heascann cochallach i bpota uisce As slippery as a hooded eel (type of eel) in a pot of water
eacann cochallach=type of eel, pota uisce=pot of water
Chomh smeartha le n-aprún búistéara As smeared/smudged as a butcher’s apron
smeartha=smeared, aprún=apron, búistéir=butcher
Chomh socair le cat As calm as a cat
socair=calm/quiet, cat=cat
Chomh socair le lao na bó As calm as the cow’s calf (i.e., as good as gold)
socair calm/quiet, lao=calf, bó=cow
Chomh socair le huan As calm as a lamb (i.e., as good as gold)
socair=calm/quiet, uan=lamb
Chomh soiléir le cac ar do léine As clear as excrement on your shirt
(rude or humorous statement)

cac=excrement, léine=shirt
Chomh soiléir le grian an mheán lae As clear as the midday sun
soiléir=clear, grian=sun, meán lae=midday
Chomh sona le cuach i nead a comharsan As happy a a cuckoo in the nest of it’s neighbour
sona=happy, cuach=cuckoo, nead=nest, comharsa=neighbour
Chomh státúil le fia As stately le a deer
státúil=stately, fia=deer
Chomh stuama le breitheamh As sober as a judge
stuama=sober/sensible, breitheamh=judge
Chomh suaimhneach le cill As peacful/quiet as a graveyard
suaimhneach=peaceful, cill=graveyard
Chomh suaimhneach le luchógaí beaga As peacful/quiet as mice
suaimhneach=peaceful, luchógaí beaga=mice

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T

Chomh taisfhuar le taobh na huaighe As cold as the side of the grave
(said of a sick person’s hand or body)

taisfhuar is a compound of tais (=damp) and fuar (=cold), uaigh=grave
Chomh tanaí le habhlann As thin as a wafer
tanaí=thin, abhlann=wafer
Chomh tanaí le duilleog eidhinn As thin as an ivy leaf
tanaí=thin, duilleog=leaf, eidheann=ivy
Chomh tapaidh le splanc As quick as a flash
tapaidh=quick, splanc=flash/spark
Chomh te bruite le caiscín ar ghrideall As roasting hot as a wholemeal cake on a griddle
(of person)

te=hot, bruite=roasted/cooked, caiscín=oatmeal cake, grideall=griddle
Chomh te leis an tine As hot as the fire
te=hot, tine=fire
Chomh te teolaí le hubh i dtóin circe As warm and comfortable as an egg in a hen¹s behind
(humorous)

te=hot, teolaí=warm/comfortable, tóin=bottom/posterior, circe=genitive of “cearc” (hen)
Chomh teann le cloch As firm as a stone
(Irish Bible)

teann=firm/tight, cloch= stone/rock
Chomh teann le comhairleoir dlí As tight(lipped) as a legal advisor
(said in phrase “odhún sí a béal chomh teann le comhairleoir dlí”)

teann=tight, comairleoir=advisor, dlí=law
Chomh teann le téad fidile As tight as a fiddle string
teann=tight, téad=string/rope, fidil=fiddle
Chomh tinn le cú As sick as a hound
tinn=sick, cú=hound
Chomh tinn le neascóid As sore as a boil
tinn=sore/sick, neascóid=boil
Chomh tirim le coirt crainn As dry as the bark of a tree
(said of lips)

tirim=dry, coirt=bark, crann=tree
Chomh tirim le fásach As dry as a desert
(Irish Bible)

tirim=dry, fásach=desert
Chomh tirim le feadóg As dry as a whistle
tirim=dry, feadóg=whistle
Chomh tirim le púdar As dry as powder
tirim=dry, púdar=powder
Chomh tirim le snaois As dry as snuff
tirim=dry, snaois=snuff
Chomh tirim le sprís As dry as tinder
tirim=dry, sprís=dry twigs/tinder
Chomh tiubh le clár As thick as a plank/board
tiubh=thick, clár=board/plank
Chomh tiubh le gaineamh an trá As thick/plentiful as the sand of the beach
tiubh=thick/plentiful, gaineamh=sand, trá=beach
Chomh tiubh le sail scafa As thick as a planed beam (approx 9 ins.)
tiubh=thick, sail=beam, scafa=past participle of “scamh” (to peel or plane)
Chomh tráthúil le bille bainc As punctual as a bankbill
tráthúil=punctual/timely (from tráth=hour/time), bille=bill, banc=bank
Chomh tréan le múr clocha sneachta As plentiful or frequent as a shower of hail stones
(said of blows)

tréan=plentiful, múr=shower, clocha sneachta=hail stones
Chomh tréan le sprémhóin As plentiful as old turf
tréan=plentiful; sprémhóin=useless, leftover turf or turf dust, of which there is usually a lot
Chomh trom le cloch As heavy as a stone
trom=heavy, cloch=stone
Chomh trom le cnap miotail As heavy as a lump of metal
trom=heavy, cnap=lump, miotal=metal
Chomh tuartha le gé ghoir As washy as a brooding goose
tuartha=”washy”/whitened, gé=goose, gor=broodiness/heat
Chomh tuirseach le seanchapall As tired as an old horse
tuirseach=tired, sean=old, capall=horse

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U

Chomh húr le geamhar féir As fresh as springing shoots of grass
(Irish Bible)

úr=fresh, geamhar=springing shoot, féar=grass
Chomh húr le nóinín As fresh as a daisy
úr=fresh, nóinín=daisy

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