The Druid is a large wooden statue, opposite Molly Gallivan’s cottage, Bonane, Kenmare. It is carved from the remains of a pine tree, which has stood there for hundreds of years. The carving represents the first settlers in the area over 6000 years ago. The Druid looks out over the valley to the highest point on Barra-Bui mountain where a Cairn burial on the summit marks the resting place of one of his ancient chieftains.
* * *
The Irish world for ‘road’ is ‘Bothar’, while a narrow lane is called a ‘Boreen’.
America’s first chocolate shop was opened in 1765 at Dorchester, Massachusetts by Irishman John Hannon.
* * *
* * *
Irish legend says that the souls of people who had rejected St Patrick’s teachings would come back as werewolves.
In ancient Ireland, people were most scared of being abducted by fairies during the month of May.
Connemara ponies come from the Connemara area in western Ireland – it has a very inhospitable landscape which has made these ponies resilient and strong.
Three theories of where the ponies originated;
1. The Vikings brought over ponies when they invaded Ireland from AD795 onwards, and the Connemara ponies developed from these animals.
2. Some believe the Connemara pony is believed to be a descendant of the Irish Hobby, which lived before the 13th century, but is now extinct
3. Some galleons from the Spanish Armada ran aground in the west of Ireland in 1588, and the Andalusian horses they carried were released on land. These horses are said to have inter-bred with native Irish ponies and became the Connemara ponies.
* * *
There are more dogs in Ireland per capita than any other country in the EU.
* * *
The word hubbub is derived from the ancient Irish war cry abu! It came into the language in the 16th century from the Irish battle cries; ababú, abú.
Hubbub meant ‘confused noise of a shouting crowd’.
* * *
During the American Revolutionary War up to 50% of the troops were of Irish descent.
All images copyright Ireland Calling (unless stated on the photo)
Do you qualify to become an Irish citizen?There are three main ways for a person to qualify for Irish citizenship – through birth, through marriage or civil partnership or through naturalisation. Check if you qualify for Irish citizenshipt
Did you know?People with Irish roots have a great opportunity to start searching their family history for free thanks to ancestry.ie who have made more than ten million records available online. The family tree website has published Catholic Parish Registers dating from 1655 all the way up to 1915. Find out more.
Have you heard about…Great fun - A bride and groom treated their guests to a session of traditional Irish dancing for their first dance as a marriage couple during their wedding reception. Check out the video here.
What about this…‘If weather forecasters were more honest’ - a hilarious video imagines what Irish weather forecast would sound like if the presenter was a bit less cheerful and a bit more honest. Find out more.