1181 John Comyn was made Archbishop of Dublin on this day in 1181. He was the personal chaplain to King Henry II, and it was him who arranged for Comyn to be elected.
This was all despite Comyn not actually being a priest. Once he had been elected, he met with Pope Lucius III and on 21 March 1181 he was consecrated. He immediately took up the role as Archbishop of Dublin, and was the first non-Irishman to hold the position.
In 1192, he elevated the parish church dedicated to St. Patrick to the status of a collegiate church, so it became a church devoted to both worship and learning.
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1656 Bishop James Ussher died on this day in 1656. He held the position of Primate of Ireland, effectively the head of the Irish church, and spent his life studying the bible and the characters within it.
Ussher attempted to date the events and people in the bible, and produce an historically correct chronology of human history. He examined documents from Roman times, from the Middle East and the Mediterranean as well as the Bible. His research was thorough.
His studies produced an estimation of the date that God created the world, 4004BC. Ussher also predicted that the world would end, on 4th November 1996.
Thousands of people and cults around the world believed in Ussher’s work, and feared his end of the world prediction, right up until the date itself. Fortunately, it proved to be incorrect.
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1970 On this day in 1970, Ireland won the Eurovision Song Contest for the first time. The ceremony was held at the RAI Congrescentrum in Amsterdam and Ireland’s entry All Kinds of Everything, performed by Dana, won 32 points to beat off second placed United Kingdom.
Click here to read about some great Irish musicians, singers and bands
Here is a video of Dana’s performance.
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1998 Sonia O’Sullivan won gold in the World Cross Country Championships in Morocco on this day in 1998. She beat English long distance legend Paula Radcliffe into first place by three seconds, completing the 8km distance in 25 minutes and 39 seconds.
O’Sullivan was born in County Cork and went on to win a silver medal in the 5km at the Sydney Summer Olympics in 2000.
On the 6 June 2012, she carried the Olympic flame onto St. Stephen’s Green and lit an Olympic cauldron there. She was Chef De Mission for Team Ireland for the Olympics in 2012.
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2009 Ronan O’Gara sealed a dramatic victory for Ireland with a last minute drop goal against Wales in Cardiff on this day in 2009. The 17-15 win sealed the Six Nations Championship and Ireland’s second Grand Slam, 61 years after their first.
O’Gara career highlights – “Drop at goal, Grand Slam at stake