Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search

I don't think we can have this as a Scots word (rather than English dialect) without some convincing evidence. I've never seen any. 01:35, 4 February 2008 (UTC)

Tea room discussion[edit]

Note: the below discussion was moved from the Wiktionary:Tea room.

I'm sure that somebody must already have made this point, but I feel that the use of the spelling 'craic' in the context of a text in English should be regarded as inadmissible. It gives the impression that the word is a recent, and not-quite-naturalized, borrowing from Irish, whereas almost the reverse is the case. I'm fairly certain that the use of the spelling 'craic' only began after the introduction of 'crack' cocaine: up until sometime in the 1980s it was normal for posters for bars, or festivals such as Lisdoonvarna, to list 'crack' as one of the factors that might induce the public into going along. Presumably they changed the spelling so that they would not be thought to be purveying cocaine: but this is ludicrous, pusillanimous and wrongheaded. A public place of entertainment is not going to deal in cocaine, and certainly isn't going to mention the fact in its publicity. All speakers of English are entirely used to polysemy, and 'crack' is well able to support a variety of meanings without the need to resort to tinkering with its spelling. As a reductio ad absurdum, visitors to (e.g.) Lynch's Bar expect to find there a public place of purveyance of alcoholic and other beverages, rather than an elongated piece of metal, an accumulation of sand, an impediment, an organization of lawyers, a piece of gymnastic equipment, or any of the many other things which 'bar' might connote. So, in the case of this word, 'crack' (in English) it must be. —This unsigned comment was added by Kip VanDoorn (talkcontribs).

Wiktionary describes actual usage, it doesn't prescribe it (i.e. it is descriptive not prescriptive). As craic is used as an English word we include it as such - it is hardly the only load word naturalised into English that doesn't conform to the orthographic rules of native words. Off the top of my head there is Hawaii, ski, eisteddfod, Qatari, chav, etc. By the same token it also has an entry at crack, describing it's use with that spelling. Thryduulf 15:55, 6 May 2008 (UTC)

My point is precisely that it's not a loanword from Irish into English - indeed, quite the opposite. Spelling it 'craic' gives that (misleading) impression. I'm not trying to prescribe usage here; merely opining that, in an English-language context, 'craic' is a misspelling of a word which ought to be spelt 'crack'. Or do you not even accept that misspellings exist? (Kip VanDoorn)

I do accept that misspellings exist, what I don't accept is that "craic" is one (although see also my final paragraph).
The word crack is of Scotts origin, and saw limited regional borrowing into the English of the north of England and (lowland) Scotland. Then the Scots word was borrowed into Irish Gaelic as craic, with spelling altered to fit that language's orthography. The Irish Gaelic word has since been borrowed into Irish English, without altering the spelling, and it's use is gradually expanding outside of Ireland.
Thus the word has been borrowed into English twice, once direct from Scots with the spelling "crack", and once via Irish Gaelic with the spelling craic. This means there are two words meaning the same thing in English with craic being the more widespread. craic would be a misspelling in Scots, and would be a misspelling of the northern England and (lowland) Scotland dialectual English language term. However crack would be a misspelling in Irish Gaelic and of the Irish English dialect term. Thryduulf 10:37, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

What's needed here are some dated citations. I'm convinced, on the basis of my own memory, that 'craic' was, as I've already said, introduced relatively recently (1985 or so?), and only as a reaction to the arrival of 'crack' cocaine. The word 'crack', in the same sense and with the latter spelling, was general in all parts of Ireland for decades (at least) before that. It is not, therefore, a loanword from an Irish word 'craic', and to use the latter spelling (other than in the context of an utterance in Irish) is disingenuous or misinformed. If speakers outside Ireland use the spelling 'craic', it's doubtless because they think it's a native Irish word, which it is not; ergo, it's based on misinformation, and that, in my baook, makes it a misspelling also. (Kip VanDoorn)

As a person living in Ireland I can verify the word is in everyday usage by English speakers.

See for proof. And the spelling of the word as "crack" by Irish people almost doesn't exist. It is on posters as "craic", people use it in txt-messaging, etc., it is even used in English short stories without italics. I, personally, amn't a big fan of it, but wether or not we like the spelling of this word doesn't affect the fact that the this spelling exists very commonly and thus deserves an entry. 19:56, 27 June 2008 (UTC)