from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. The Celtic language of ancient Gaul.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- adj. Of or pertaining to Gaul.
- adj. Of or pertaining to the barbarian tribes speaking Gaulish languages.
- proper n. The Celtic language that was spoken in Gaul, long extinct.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- adj. Pertaining to ancient France, or Gaul; Gallic.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Pertaining to Gaul or the Gauls; Gallic.
- Left-handed: same as gauche.
The illustration shows this famous example of nos ancetres les Gaulois, as the French still call their Gaulish ancestors: long blond hair flowing, thick blond moustache with pointed ends, dashing red cloak flung over his shoulder, seated on a rearing white horse.
This People is no longer called Gaulish; and it has wholly become braccatus, has got breeches, and suffered change enough: certain fierce German Franken came storming over; and, so to speak, vaulted on the back of it; and always after, in their grim tenacious way, have ridden it bridled; for German is, by his very name,
"He [Balzac] tells us that he _is of an old Gaulish family_ (You understand, 'Gaulish' -- one of Charlemagne's peers!
But after the Romans occupied their territories, speakers of Gaulish and Celtiberian, major Continental Celtic languages, gradually came to speak Latin instead.
Gaulish, which, as you can see on our handy Indo-European languages diagram, is a now-extinct tongue of the Celtic branch of Indo-European languages.
These natives, known as Romans, had beaten back Gaulish invaders earlier in the century and were now beginning to spread their power, by war and diplomacy, throughout the Italic peninsula.
If he wasn't putting the hairy tribesmen of Germania to the sword, he was massacring the Gaulish ranks at Alesia in modern-day France or striking terror into the woad-daubed hordes of Britain.
Here is the battered, brightly-coloured cover of La Petite Histoire de France, with its helpful summaries: Here we see the Gaulish leader Vercingetorix fighting bravely against the Romans.
She was a Gaulish deity who made the step up to Roman cult figure, probably because everyone loves horses and the Italians hadn't thought up a horse divinity of their own.
Apart from Caesar himself, the most interesting character is the Gaulish rebel leader Vercingetorix, who led the final revolt in 52 BC and was presumably a visible prisoner in Rome at the time the book first came out.