Irish (Gaeilge) is a Goidelic language of the Celtic languages family, itself a branch of the Aryan language family. Irish originated in Ireland and was historically spoken by Irish people throughout Ireland. Irish is spoken as a first language in substantial areas of counties Galway, Kerry, Cork and Donegal, smaller areas of Waterford, Mayo and Meath, and a few other locations, and as a second language by a larger group of habitual but non-traditional speakers across the country.
Irish has been the dominant language of the Irish people for most of their recorded history, and they brought it with them to other regions, notably Scotland and the Isle of Man, where Middle Irish gave rise to Scottish Gaelic and Manx respectively. It has the oldest vernacular literature in Western Europe.
Irish has constitutional status as the national and first official language of the Republic of Ireland and is an officially recognised minority language in Northern Ireland. It is also among the official languages of the European Union.