Aran Islands, Inishmore, July 2008
Inishmore (Irish: Árainn (Mhór) / Inis Mór) is the largest of the Aran Islands in Galway Bay in Ireland and has an area of 31 km² (12 mi²). Prior to the 20th century, the island was more commonly called Aranmore (Irish: Árainn Mhór) (i.e. "Great Aran") in English; from the traditional Irish name, leading to confusion with Arranmore, County Donegal. The Irish word Árainn means "long ridge" which is an apt description for the island. The name Inishmore was invented by the English Ordnance Survey in the mid 1800s. The new name is grammatically incorrect in Irish: because inis "island" is a feminine noun, a following adjective must be lenited, so the expected name would be Inis Mhór. Árainn is still the official Irish name. The island is famous for its strong Irish culture, loyalty to the Irish language, and a wealth of Pre-Christian and Christian ancient sites including Dún Aengus, "the most magnificent barbaric monument in Europe."
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