Tuig thus’ an t-eathar, ‘s tuigidh an t-eathar thu

Tuig thus’ an t-eathar, ‘s tuigidh an t-eathar thu
Understand the boat and the boat will understand you


Quoted by Alexander Nicolson in A collection of Gaelic proverbs and familiar phrases : based on Macintosh’s collection (1882).

This proverb is used in a story on the Learn Gaelic website – An Litir Bheag 221: Understand the Boat. While the theme of this proverb is one of sailing, it can be understood as advice on building a relationship between a person and many other things – the boat you sail on, the horse you ride on, and the land itself. The relationship between communities and land runs throughout Gaelic thought. How do you take this proverb to heart in today’s world? Do you develop this intimate of a relationship with the world around you?

There are many articles that discuss developing an understanding of land. Below are just a few. Enjoy, and consider how you apply the proverb in your own life.


On Land and Purpose – Mike McKenzie – Bella Caledonia

Strì an Fhearainn: Story of the Land – Mairi McFadyen – Bella Caledonia

For Native Americans, Land Is More Than Just the Ground Beneath Their Feet