On Sun, 16 Jul 1995, Susana Conde wrote:
> The word "creach" or "creagh", meaning raid or to raid (especially
> for cattle), came into English from Gaelic at least as early as the 15th
> These words are sometimes spelled with a final e, creachaire.
> More modern dictionaries translate English "raider" with the Gaelic word
> "creachadair" or "creachadoir".
> I need to know (1) the difference made by the final e in the earlier
> spellings, (2) why the later spellings have acquired the included syllable
> ad, and (3) whether either of the earlier spellings is still used--and if
> so, which.
Scottish and Irish Gaelic have a largish selection of agent endings
similar to English -er (reader), -or (donor), -ist (stylist) -cian
(beautician), etc. The word "creach" is used in both languages and the
modern forms of the agent, as you noted, are "creachadair" in Scottish
and "creachado/ir" in Irish Gaelic. The endings -adair and -ado/ir are
pretty common in their respective languages. In Irish, "creachaire" is
essentially just a dialectical variation. I've never encountered
"creachair" in Scottish Gaelic, but it seems plausible, since SG commonly
uses -air where IG uses -aire: "iasgair" instead of "iascaire" for
"fisherman". None of these and various other endings really differ in
semantic content. Which one gets applied seems to be mainly a matter of
custom (i.e., etymology, euphony and just plain fashion).
Hope this helps.