The Celtic languages of northwestern Europe exist in a radically different societal context from established official languages such as English and French. Translation into these dominated languages more often than not fails to understand the radically different societal context in which those languages exist. The ‘standard’ / ‘slang’ dichotomy, so pervasive in the context of English and French, does not describe the dialectal reality of written expression in languages such as Breton, Welsh, Irish, and Scottish Gaelic. Despite the title, the ‘particularities’ mentioned in this article are not particular to the Celtic languages but characterise many other dominated languages worldwide. We exemplify from Celtic only because we are so familiar with these languages.
The standard has a certain degree of flexibility as is recognised formally by an official European Union website since 2017 :
An Caighdeán Oifigiúil (2016) is considered the authoritative grammar for the Irish Language and conforming to the conventions set out therein will be taken into account in the overall evaluation of translations. However, the consistent use of other recognised sets of rules (e.g. An Caighdeán Oifigiúil (1958) and An Caighdeán Oifigiúil, Caighdeán Athbhreithnithe (2012)) will not be penalised i.e. marks will not be deducted if the ‘old’ rules are used.