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Celtic Slang | About Celtic | Celtic's Foundation

DescriptionThe Bhoys - Pic

'Bhoys' was a self-reference and nickname common among Irish emigrants referring to themselves.

The extra letter was an attempt to capture the Irish accent, as well probably signifying a sense of their own cultural identity.

The term is said to have been generated in New York (USA) during the 19th Century and passed back over the Atlantic.

Promotional stuff on Celtic goods from the earliest days even refer to 'The Bould Bhoys'.

So the term and name stuck, and it became the de facto nickname for Celtic, the fans and all related groups.

If anything, the 'Bhoys' is an endearing reference for the Celtic support which easily helps to reflect the cultural ties with the club's in a simple way.

According to Alan Lugton who wrote "The Making of Hibernian [FC]", the term 'The Bhoys' was a nickname that was even used to refer to Hibs in their early days:
"At the time of their founding, Hibernian had various nicknames such as “representatives of the Emerald Isle” or “the Bhoys”, but the most popular nicknames were “the Green Jerseys” and the Irishmen."

Appears that in the 19th Century, it possibly was used to refer to any 'Irish' football side, for example in the Motherwell Times (Saturday 01 October 1892) it has Carfin Shamrocks (football side) known as the 'Bhoys'.

Ridiculously, Huns add a 'h' to terms in a pejorative way to describe Celtic fans (e.g. "mhanks"), but then again it adds to show the impact of the Irish aspect to the Celtic culture.




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