The Lost Books of Ireland

For all the glorious ancient Irish tomes that have survived the years, a large number have been lost to our turbulent history. How do we know we are missing some if, well, we don’t have them? Good question. We know we’re missing some because they’re mentioned in tomes that we do have. A list was compiled of the texts that we hope, somehow, some day, will come to light and be found….

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Music From the Blocks

The Jailtacht The people serving time in Long Kesh Prison, Belfast enjoyed a freedom to speak the Irish language, a freedom not permitted in many British prisons during the Troubles. H-blocks, in Long Kesh, the section of the prison where Republican inmates were kept, became known as the Jailtacht (a play on Gaeltacht – an Irish speaking region). It was a cultural revival as inmates would spend most of their…

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Ireland’s Cardinal Directions

  Similar to the Indians and the Hebrews, Ireland originally expressed the cardinal directions with regard to the rising sun. That is, the main point of reference for all the directions would have been East, such that: East = Forward South = Right North = Left West = Behind Even though we no longer orient our maps to reflect this convention, the language still bears it out in some ways.*…

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Ireland’s Odd Seasons

In Ireland, the practice amongst the general populace is to classify the seasons in the following way: Winter – November, December, January Spring – February, March, April Summer – May, June, July Autumn – August, September, October This is different to most other countries in the northern hemisphere, which generally classify each season as beginning a month and a half later than shown above. In fact, the only other country…

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Women in the Brehon Law

I’ve heard women were equals to men in the Brehon Laws, is this true? Despite what the myths show us, no, it’s not true. Women were just as powerless in Brehon Law as indeed they were in most countries across the world at the time. Regular women didn’t carry an honour price. They shared their rank in law with a few others. They were, um… – Children, – The dependent…

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Introduction to Brehon Law

What is Brehon Law? Brehon Law is the law system that Ireland used up until around 400 years ago when the final nail was put in its coffin with the Flight of the Earls. It worked quite differently to the law system we use today. It has been described as tribal, rural, hierarchical and familiar – meaning a society in which family, not the individual, is the unit. The family…

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Ceasair: the First Taking of Ireland

In the time before the flood, Noah is sent a message by a man called Bioth, to know whether he and his daughter Ceasair could have a place in the ark to save them from the flood. Noah responds that they should not get that. Ceasair’s husband, Fionntán, asks the same, and is similarly denied. Bioth, Fionntán and Ceasair decide to consult and make plans. Ceasair advises them to forsake…

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Why Did England Want Ireland? 1250 – 1303

What’s the point? England had to put down rebellion after rebellion after rebellion after rebellion in Ireland from the moment it moved in. Well, it was worth it when you consider the amount of money and resources that Ireland could provide. King Edward really liked waging wars. In 1277 he launched a nice long war against Wales that lasted into the 1280s and Ireland played an important role.

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