Grammar Checkers

Recently, a grammar checker has become available for Irish. Finally!

Grammar checkers in Microsoft Word and LibreOffice Writer

A grammar and spelling checker that works within Microsoft Word is available. It is called Anois. It is easy to use and quickly checks spelling and grammar mistakes. A tab is added to the ribbon in Microsoft Office. The user only needs to press the Anois tab to activate Anois. Another spelling and grammar checker that works outside of word processors is also available. It is called Ceart (see below). Operating as a standalone application; one needs to paste text (that would usually originate in a Word or Writer document) into the appropriate window, press a button, and wait for the application to perform the checking.

That said: Since Writer is based on the open source philosophy, and also since the basic computational tool now exists for grammar checking, we hope to see grammar checking included as a no-charge feature of Writer at some point in the future.

It is not known whether or not Microsoft plans an Irish language grammar checker anytime soon for its products.

Anois

The Irish-language software development company, Cruinneog (www.cruinneog.com), created the integrated spelling and grammar checker called Anois. It can be downloaded or ordered on a CD from Cruinneog’s website. It works inside Microsoft Word only.

Anois operates inside Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010. It checks the spelling and grammar. Along with that, it contains a thesaurus so that synonyms can be quickly found.

It has some user options so that it can customized as the user wishes. Amongst the options are:

  • the option to check all of the text or a selected part of the text
  • the option to implement grammar rules as used in the Ulster dialect of Irish
  • the option to switch off Microsoft Word’s grammar checker
  • the option to have Irish or English on the user interface.

When a text is being checked, the option is given to change a word according to the rules used or to ignore the suggestions.

It is a convenient and useful device for people who type in Irish that will improve typing in Irish.

WARNING: Knowledge of the grammar of the Irish language is necessary as not every suggestion from Anois is correct. Writers should not accept every suggestion. Writers should use their own discretion and decide for themselves what is correct. Refer to the Caighdeán Oifigiúil or Graiméir Gaeilge na mBráithre Críostaí if there is any doubt or uncertainty regarding grammar.

Ceart

If you don’t have Microsoft Office (which you don’t need to have - LibreOffice is available for free), you can still check your spelling and grammar using the standalone programme called Ceart.

Cruinneog developed both Anois and Ceart.

According to Cruinneog:

Ceart is a powerful standalone software package designed to help correct both grammatical and spelling mistakes in the Irish language - such as “séimhiú” and “urú” issues on nouns. The package is a sophisticated resource for translators, students, learners and professionals.

The grammar and spell-checking features boost productivity by rapidly highlighting questionable words and phrases. Ease of use has been a key goal of the Ceart project, and its user interface has been designed so that text from any other software application can simply be “copy and pasted” into the Ceart window. Passages of the text which appear to be incorrect are identified and shown to the user in a series of informative windows. The phrases or words which are suspect are highlighted and a concise message summarises the potential problem.

Ceart’s grammar engine catches common problems associated with séimhiú’s and urú’s at the beginning of words and many other more complicated rules too. Please note that no grammar checking software is perfect - human languages are much too complex for present-day computers to understand completely, and important texts should be proofread carefully even after being run through Ceart.

Comprehensive technical support is available via e-mail to everyone who purchases one of our products.

Ceart is easy to install and get working.

To use the programme, just put the text into the window, and press the Check button. Any errors are highlighted.

The programme is well worth the cost, especially considering the effort involved in producing something like this, which far exceeds the work in creating a spellchecker, which in itself is no small task.

On-line Grammar Checker (free)

There is a grammar checker available on-line, at the following Saint Louis University (Missouri) link:

Just paste the text and follow the instructions.

The window is limited to 1024 characters, about 150 words. Errors are highlighted if they are found.

Note that a knowledge of Irish is required in order to interpret the results, as one might reasonably expect.

LibreOffice - The Choice for Irish

An Foclóir Beag (Dictionary)

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