On March 17th, everybody gets to be Irish. It’s a lot of fun, but most people don’t know much about the history of the Irish language, which almost didn’t survive British rule.
In the 1800s, the British laws required education in English-only, Protestant schools. Combined with the potato famine, which killed many native speakers and caused a mass exodus of those who survived, the Irish language was quite endangered.
Language revitalization efforts began several decades ago, and now about 15% of the population can speak Gaelic well. This is quite a relief to linguists, who hate to see any language disappear. Here’s a link about the Irish language which exhibits the rare property of being a verb-initial language: