3800BC-3200BC At Poulnabrone Dolmen in County
Clare, one of some 120 wedge tombs, bodies were interred over a 600
year period that ended about 3200BC. Poulnabrone means "cave of the
quern." A quern is a hollowed out stone to grind grain. A dolmen is
a megalithic monument.
(SFEC, 11/12/00, p.T8) (SSFC, 12/24/00, p.T4)
300BC In Ireland 2 men were
murdered about this time. In 2005 their preserved remains were found
in a peat bog. One dubbed Clonycavan Man was about 5 feet 2 inches
and used hair gel. The other, dubbed Oldcroghan Man, stood 6 feet 6
inches. "Oldcroghan Man was stabbed through the chest. He was then
decapitated and his body cut in half while Clonycaven Man had his
head split open with an axe before he was disemboweled.
c1AD Stone forts were built on
the 3 Aran islands: Inishmore, Inishmaan, and Isisheer, whose total
area was 18 sq. miles. The islands are on the west coast of Ireland
at the mouth of Galway Bay.
(SFEC, 1/23/00, T8,9)
238AD Solinus wrote that the
Hibernian mother places the first morsel of food in her child’s
mouth with the point of her sword.
(AM, Mar/Apr 97 p.11)
300-400 In Ireland the Staigue Fort with circular
drystone walls was built about this time on the Iveragh peninsula.
377 Niall of the Nine Hostages,
warlord and head of the most powerful dynasty in ancient Ireland,
was crowned king. He reportedly had 12 sons, many of whom became
powerful Irish kings themselves. In 2006 scientists in Ireland
presented evidence that he was the country's most fertile male, with
more than 3 million men worldwide among his offspring.
c389 Mar 17, St. Patrick
(d.461), the patron saint of Ireland, was born. Calpurnius, his
father, was a deacon and local official who lost his son to Irish
raiders when Patrick was 16. Patrick allegedly drove all the snakes
(i.e. pagans) out of Ireland.
(HN, 3/17/99)(HNQ, 3/17/01)(WSJ, 3/12/04, p.W13)
c389-461AD St. Patrick, an English missionary and
bishop of Ireland. March 17 is celebrated in his honor. He was a
Celt born in Romanized Britain and was kidnapped by Irish pirates at
16, sold into slavery, and served for 6 years as a shepherd until he
(SFC, 3/15/97, p.A16)(WUD, 1994, p.1057)(SFC,
c400AD The Celtic ruler Niall of the Nine Hostages
lived around this time.
(SFC, 7/14/97, p.E1)
c400AD People from the chiefdom Dal Riata in
northern Ireland crossed the Irish Sea and settled along the
Scottish coast of County Argyll.
(AM, 7/01, p.46)
400-500 The leap year tradition of women proposing
marriage to men began in 5th century Ireland.
(SFEC, 6/8/97, Z1 p.6)
400-1177 Ireland was made up of at least 120
(AM, 7/01, p.46)
c405 St. Patrick, aged 16, was
sold in Northern Ireland as a slave by King Niall’s men.
(WSJ, 3/15/02, p.W15)
c432 About this time Patrick
was consecrated a bishop and returned to Ireland as a missionary.
This period is covered in the 1995 book "How the Irish Saved
Civilization" by Thomas Cahill.
(SFC, 3/17/97, p.A20)(WSJ, 11/5/99, p.W12)
438 Easter, St. Patrick used
the 3-leaf clover to illustrate the Trinity.
(SFEC, 3/15/98, p.D7)
441 Bishop Patrick allegedly
fasted for 40 days on a 2,500-foot peak later named Croagh Patrick
in county Mayo. He allegedly banished snakes from Ireland during
(SFCM, 10/14/01, p.23)
444 St. Patrick selected the
site for the Cathedral of Armagh. It later became Ireland’s
ecclesiastical center and preceded the 360 churches that he
(SFEC, 3/15/98, p.D7)
461 Mar 17, According to
tradition, St. Patrick (b.c389), the patron saint of Ireland, died
in Saul, County Down. Some sources say he died in 493AD. He was an
English missionary and bishop of Ireland. In 2004 Philip Freeman
authored "St. Patrick: A Biography."
(SFC, 3/15/97, p.A16)(WSJ, 3/12/04, p.W13)(AP,
c500-600 Irish monks brought an alembic from the
Middle East that was initially used to distill perfumes. They soon
applied it to spirits and produced Uisce Beatha (water of life),
better known as whiskey.
(WSJ, 8/14/02, p.D8)
546AD Colmcille, an Irish
saint, founded a monastery at Derry.
(SFC, 12/1/97, p.A14)
548 St. Kieran founded a
monastery at Clonmacnoise, an Irish phrase meaning "the meadow of
the sons of Nos."
(SFEC, 8/1/99, p.T8)
550-1200AD The period of Irish Monasticism.
563 The Irish Catholic monk
Columba (Colum Cille) arrived on the Scottish island of Iona.
(SFC, 2/10/99, p.A10)(AM, 7/01, p.51)
565 Aug 22, St. Columba
reported seeing a monster in Loch Ness.
c600 "The Navigatio Sancti
Brendani Abbatis" (Voyage of St. Brendan the Abbott) recounts a
7-year trip to a land across the sea by the Irish saint and a band
of acolytes about this time.
(SFEM, 11/15/98, p.24)
600-700 Irish monastic monks founded a monastery
at Skellig Michael (Michael’s Rock) during the 7th century and for
the next 600 years the island was a center of their monastic life.
In 1996 UNESCO listed it as a World Heritage Site.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skellig_Michael)(Econ, 9/12/09, p.94)
615 Nov 23, Columbanus, Irish
explorer, monastery founder, poet and saint (Poenitentiale), died
(aka St. Columba).
697 An assembly was called at
the hill of Tara to put an end to the participation of Irish women
(AM, Mar/Apr 97 p.11)
700-800 Vikings settled the Faeroe Islands in the
8th century replacing Irish settlers. In 1948 the group of 18
islands, located between Britain and Iceland, became an autonomous
region of Denmark.
795 Vikings first raided
(SFEC, 8/1/99, p.T8)
c797 The 1,200 year-old Book of
Kells, an illuminated manuscript of the Gospels, was made by Irish
monks. It was later kept in the library of Dublin’s Trinity College.
The Book of Kells is a richly decorated copy of the four
gospels--Matthew, Mark, Luke and John--produced by Christian monks,
possibly in the late 700s on the Scottish isle of Iona or in the
Irish town of Kells. Joyce later used it as a model for Ulysses.
(SFC, 3/17/97, p.A20)(HNQ, 1/13/99)(SFEM,
840 Vikings settled in Ireland.
(SFEC, 8/1/99, p.T8)
842 Vikings attacked the
monastery at Clonmacnoise from bases in Ireland.
(SFEC, 8/1/99, p.T8)
874 Vikings from Norway began
to survey Iceland. The monks withdrew to Ireland. The
40,000-square-mile island situated 500 miles northwest of Scotland
was first settled by Norwegians.
(NH, 6/96, p.53)(Economist, 8/25/12, p.64)
878 Monks packed up their
shrine of Collum Cille at Iona and moved to Kells, Ireland.
(AM, 7/01, p.50)
918 There was a great flood in
the region of Clonmacnoise.
(SFEC, 8/1/99, p.T8)
1014 Apr 23, The Battle of
Contarf ended Danish rule in Ireland but a Dane killed Irish King
Brian Boru (87).
(PCh, 1992, p.80)(MC, 4/23/02)
1014 Apr 23, Sweyn Forkbeard,
Viking king of England (1013-14), died.
1100s Bushmills Distillery in
Northern Ireland began producing whiskey.
(SFEC, 1/10/99, p.T8)
1100-1200 Cistercian monks established an abbey on
(SFEC, 4/12/98, p.T8)
1100-1200 In Limerick a 12th century cathedral was
(SFEC, 3/15/98, p.T11)
1149 The yew tree of St. Kieran
was struck by lightning and 113 sheep taking refuge there were
(SFEC, 8/1/99, p.T8)
1166 Diarmaid Mac Murchada,
King of Leinster, met with Henry II in Aquitaine after he was
dispossessed of land by Ruaidhri O Conchobair, the High King of
Ireland. This meeting instigated the Norman invasion of 1169.
(Econ, 5/28/11, p.18)
1169 May 1, The Norman invasion
of Ireland, a two-stage process, began when a force of loosely
associated Norman knights landed near Bannow, County Wexford. This
was at the request of Dermot MacMurrough (Diarmait Mac Murchada),
the ousted King of Leinster, who sought their help in regaining his
kingdom. Stage 2 began in 1171 with the arrival of Henry II.
1171 May 1, Dermot MacMurrough
(b.1110), last Irish King of Leinster, died.
1171 Oct 18, Henry II
(1133-1189) arrived in Ireland from France with an army and declared
himself "Lord of Ireland". All of the Normans, along with many Irish
princes, took oaths of homage to Henry by November, and he left
after six months. He never returned, but in 1177 he named his
youngest son, Prince John, as Lord of Ireland.
1178 English raiders attacked
the town of Clonmacnoise but spared the churches.
(SFEC, 8/1/99, p.T8)
1180 Nov 14, Laurcan O'Toole
(b.1128), Archbishop of Dublin (1161-1180), died in France. His name
was later anglicized to Laurence O'Toole. He was canonized only
forty-five years after his death.
1189 Giraldus Cambrensis
authored "History of the Conquest of Ireland."
(ON, SC, p.1)
1200-1300 In Limerick a 13th century castle was
built overlooking the Shannon River.
(SFEC, 3/15/98, p.T11)
1202 The English again attacked
the town and monastery at Clonmacnoise.
(SFEC, 8/1/99, p.T8)
1209 In Kinnitty the Kinnitty
Castle was built. It was later converted to a hotel.
(WSJ, 2/27/98, p.B8)
1349 In Belgium a church was
built in Geel to honor St. Dymphna (Dimpna). According to Christian
tradition she was the daughter of a 7th century pagan Irish king and
his Christian wife who fled to Geel, Belgium following the death of
her mother. Her father found her in Geel and struck off her head
when she refused to return home and rebuffed his incestuous desires.
7/11/15, SR p.3)
1491 Perkin Warbeck appeared in
Ireland and claimed to be the missing Duke of York, thought by many
to have been murdered by Richard III. After winning support in
France and Scotland, Warbeck's fortunes turned and he was captured
and executed in 1497.
1500-1600 The 1966 Disney film "The Fighting
Prince of Donegal" was set in the 16th century as Irish clans rose
up against the British.
(SFEC, 3/15/98, DB p.57)
1541 Jun 18, Irish parliament
"selected" Henry VIII as King of Ireland.
(SFEC, 12/22/96, Z1 p.6)(MC, 6/18/02)
c1550-1600 Grace O’Malley led a 200-strong band on
Clare Island financed by piracy.
(SFEC, 4/12/98, p.T8)
1552 The English again attacked
the town and monastery at Clonmacnoise and carried everything away.
(SFEC, 8/1/99, p.T8)
1579 Jun 17, There was an
anti-English uprising in Ireland.
1580 Nov 9, Spanish troops
landed in Ireland.
1581 Jan 4, James Ussher
(d.1656), Irish prelate and scholar, Archbishop of Armagh, was born.
According to Ussher and Dr. John Lightfoot of Cambridge, the world
was created on Oct 23, 4004BC, a Sunday, at 9 a.m.
(WUD, 1994, p.1574)(NG, Nov. 1985, edit.
p.559)(HN, 10/23/98)(MC, 1/4/02)
1588 Aug 18, A storm struck the
remaining 60 ships of the Spanish Armada under the Duke of Medina
Sidonia after which only 11 were left. Many of the ships went to
Ireland where most of the Spaniards were killed by the English. 600
Spaniards wrecked in Scotland were later returned to Spain. In 1978
Niall Fallon authored "The Armada in Ireland."
(ON, 3/02, p.6)
1588 Sep 25, A heavy storm
drove 3 Spanish ships onto the coast of Ireland. Francisco de
Cuellar, an officer on the galleon Lavia, spent the next 6 months
evading English forces and getting to Scotland and then the
Netherlands. His letter from Antwerp to King Philip on Oct 4, 1589,
was later valued for its descriptions of Ireland.
(ON, 5/02, p.12)
1588 Dec, Sir William
Fitzwilliam, the English Lord Deputy of Ireland, planned an attack
against the McClancy clan led by chieftain Dartry. Francisco de
Cuellar and a group of stranded Spanish Armada soldiers successfully
held the clan’s Rossclogher Castle under a 17-day siege.
(ON, 5/02, p.11)
1592 Trinity College in Dublin,
Ireland, was founded after small group of Dublin citizens obtained a
charter from Queen Elizabeth incorporating Trinity College juxta
1595 May 28, It was a shaken
and demoralized English column that returned to its northern Irish
base at Newry.
1596 Oct 25, The Spanish fleet
sailed from Lisbon to Ireland.
1598 Aug 15, Hugh O'Neill, the
Earl of Tyrone, led an Irish force to victory over the British at
Battle of Yellow Ford.
1599 Mar 27, Robert Devereux
became Lt-general of Ireland.
1599 Sep 7, Earl of Essex and
Irish rebel Tyrone signed a treaty.
1600-1972 This period was covered by R.F. Foster
in "Modern Ireland 1600-1972" (1989).
(WSJ, 11/13/96, p.A22)
1602 Jan 2, Battle at Kinsale,
Ireland: English army beat the Spanish.
1603 Mar 30, Battle at
Mellifont: English army under Lord Mountjoy beat the Irish.
1608 Bushmills Distillery in
Northern Ireland acquired a license for whiskey production. They had
been producing whiskey since the 1100s.
(SFEC, 1/10/99, p.T8)
1610 The settlement at Derry
was colonized by the English, who built a fortress surrounded by
stone walls and renamed it Londonderry.
(SFC, 12/1/97, p.A14)
1612 The first recorded sale of
Irish slaves was to a settlement in the Amazon, seven years before
the first African slaves arrived in Jamestown.
1613 The Brazen Head pub on
Bridge St. in Dublin was licensed. It allegedly date back to 1198.
(SFEM, 5/16/99, p.7)
1625 Mar 27, Charles I (d.1649)
became the English king. He was King of England, Ireland and
Scotland until he was beheaded.
(AP, 3/27/97)(WSJ, 6/13/96, p.A12)
1641 Oct 21, A Catholic
uprising took place in Ulster. Thousands of English and Scots were
killed. [see Oct 23]
1641 Oct 23, Catholics in
Ireland, under Phelim O'Neil, rose against the Protestants and
cruelly massacred men, women and children to the number of 40,000
(some say 100,000). [see Oct 21]
1641 A Catholic uprising in
Ulster was suppressed. English Gen’l. Oliver Cromwell took away the
land rights of 44,000 Catholics in Ulster and adjacent counties.
(SFEC, 12/22/96, Z1 p.6)
1649 Aug 15, Oliver Cromwell
landed in Ireland with his New Model Army on behalf of England's
1649 Sep 11, Oliver Cromwell
seized Drogheda, Ireland in a siege that began September 3. The week
after the storming of Drogheda, the Royalist press in England
claimed that 2,000 of the 3,000 dead were civilian.
1649 Oct, English
Parliamentarian troops broke into the town of Wexford while the
commander of the garrison, David Sinnot, was trying to negotiate a
surrender – massacring soldiers and civilians alike. Much of the
town was burned and its harbor was destroyed.
1649-1653 This period marks the Cromwellian
conquest of Ireland or Cromwellian war in Ireland. The
Parliamentarians deported about 50,000 people as indentured
laborers. They were sent to the English colonies of America and West
1650 May, Oliver Cromwell left
Ireland to fight the Third English Civil War against the new
Scottish-Royalist alliance. He passed his command onto Henry Ireton.
1650 Jun, The Ulster army met a
Parliamentarian army composed mainly of British settlers and
commanded by Charles Coote at the Battle of Scarrifholis in Donegal.
The Ulster army was routed and as many as 2000 of its men were
1651 Oct 27, English troops
occupied Limerick, Ireland.
1652 The English Parliament
passed the Act for the Settlement of Ireland which classified the
Irish population into one of several categories according to their
degree of involvement in the uprising and subsequent war. Dr.
William Petty, Physician-General to Cromwell's Army, estimated that
as many as 100,000 Irish men, women and children were transported to
the colonies in the West Indies and in North America as slaves.
1653 Dec 16, Oliver Cromwell
took on dictatorial powers with the title of lord protector" of
England, Scotland and Ireland. He served as dictator of England to
(CFA, '96, p.44)(AHD, p.315)(AP, 12/16/97)(HN,
1654 Apr 12, England, Ireland
and Scotland united.
1656 Feb 20, James Ussher (76),
Irish bible scholar, Anglican archbishop, died. [see Mar 21]
1656 Mar 21, Armagh James
Ussher (76), Archbishop (said world began 4004 BC), died. [see Feb
1667 Nov 30, Jonathan Swift
(d.1745), English satirist who wrote "Gulliver's Travels," was born
(WUD, 1994, p.1437)(HN, 11/30/98)
1681 May 17, Louis XIV sent an
expedition to aid James II in Ireland. As a result, England declared
war on France.
1685 Feb 2, Charles II (54),
King of England, Scotland, Ireland (1660-85), died. He made a
deathbed conversion to the Roman Catholic faith. He had earlier
ordered Christopher Wren to build an observatory and maritime
college at Greenwich. In 2000 Stephen Coote authored the biography:
c1685-1753 George Berkeley, Irish bishop and
philosopher. He argued that the things we see around us exist only
as ideas. This was in opposition to naive realism which held that we
perceive objects as they really are.
(WUD, 1994, p.140)(WSJ, 8/21/98, p.W13)
1689 Mar 12, Former English
King James II landed in Ireland.
1689 Mar, In Northern Ireland
the gates of Londonderry were shut in the face of Catholic forces.
The event was later celebrated by the Protestant Apprentice Boys as
the Lundy’s Day demonstration. [see August 1, 1689]
1689 Apr 21, William III and
Mary II were crowned joint king and queen of England, Scotland and
1689 Aug 1, A siege of
Londonderry, Ireland, by the Catholic Army of King James II ended in
failure. The Protestants were victorious and the event led to the
annual Apprentice Boy’s March. The group is named in honor of 13
teenage apprentices, all Protestants, who bolted the city gates in
front of the advancing Catholic forces at the start of the 105-day
(SFEC, 8/11/96, p.A13)(HN, 8/1/98)(AP, 8/13/06)
1690 Mar 16, French king Louis
XIV sent troops to Ireland.
1690 Jun 24, King William III's
army landed at Carrickfergus, Ireland.
1690 Jul 1, England's
Protestant King William III of Orange was victorious over his
father-in-law, the Catholic King James II (from Scot) in Battle of
Boyne (in Ireland). This touched off three centuries of religious
bloodshed. Protestants took over the Irish Parliament. This marked
the beginning of the annual Drumcree parade, held by the Loyal
Orange Lodge on the first Sunday of July. Due to calendar changes in
1752 this later became commemorated on Jul 12.
(PC, 1992, p.265)(WSJ, 7/11/96, p.A1)(SFEC,
12/22/96, Z1 p.6)(SFEC, 7/4/99, p.A18)
1690 Jul 12, Due to
British calendar changes in 1752, the July 1, 1690, Battle of Boyne
(in Ireland) was adjusted for celebration on Jul 12.
(SFEC, 9/27/98, BR p.5)(AP, 7/11/05)
1691 Jul 12, William III
defeated the allied Irish and French armies at the Battle of
1691 Oct 3, English and Dutch
armies occupied Limerick, Ireland.
c1696 Protestants were
victorious over Irish Catholics. King William of Orange was
victorious over Catholic King James II.
(SFC, 6/26/96, p.A8)
1697 Sep 30, Under the Treaty
of Ryswick, France recognized William III as King of England. The
signees included France, England, Spain and Holland.
(WUD, 1994, p. 1675)
1700 William Congreve, an
Anglo-Irishman playwright, published his last play, "The Way of the
(WSJ, 11/20/98, p.W6)
1702 Mar 19, On the death of
William III of Orange, Anne Stuart, sister of Mary, succeeded to the
throne of England, Scotland and Ireland.
1713 Nov 24, Laurence Sterne
(d.1768), novelist and satirist (Tristram Shandy), was born in
Ireland. "Free thinkers are generally those who never think at all."
(MC, 11/24/01)(AP, 6/19/97)
1720 The first yacht club
appeared in Cork Harbor.
(WSJ, 1/11/99, p.R34)
1722 Jonathon Swift, author and
pamphleteer, urged his fellow countrymen to boycott English goods
and "burn everything that came from England, except their people and
(SFEC, 12/22/96, Z1 p.6)
1729 Jan 12, Edmund Burke
(d.1797), British politician and author, was born in Dublin. Burke
advocated consistent and sympathetic treatment of the American
colonies: "A very great part of the mischiefs that vex this world
arises from words."
1742 Apr 13, George Frideric
Handel's "Messiah" was first performed publicly, in Dublin, Ireland.
1752 George Berkeley
(1685-1753), Irish philosopher, wrote a poem that included the line
"Westward the course of empire takes its way." The line later
inspired the founders of Berkeley, Ca., to name their city and
university after Berkeley.
(SFEC, 4/18/99, Z1 p.2)
1753 Mar 17, The 1st official
St Patrick's Day was celebrated.
1755 Arthur Guinness began
brewing a dark-brown stout in the town of Leixlip, Ireland.
(WSJ, 9/12/08, p.B7)
1759 Arthur Guinness purchased
Mark Rainsford’s Ale Brewery in Dublin, Ireland, and began producing
his own recipe. In 2009 Guinness, owned by Diageo, launched its
Arthur’s Day celebration in honor of its founder.
(SFEC, 7/2/00, p.T8)(AP, 9/26/13)
1763 Jun 20, Theobald Wolfe
Tone (d.1798), Irish nationalist, was born.
1774 Apr 4, Oliver Goldsmith,
Irish poet (She Stoops to Conquer), died.
1774 Sir Francis Beaufort
(d.1857) hydrogapher, was born near Navan in Co. Meath, Ireland.
(NH, 11/1/04, p.51)
1775-1847 Daniel O'Connell, Irish political
leader: "Bigotry has no head, and cannot think; no heart, and cannot
1776 Nano Nagle, a wealthy
Irish woman, founded the Sisters of Presentation. At this time it
was a crime in Ireland for a Catholic to teach or be taught.
(SFC, 11/12/04, p.F11)
1777 Mar 17, The Rev. Patrick
Bronte was born on St. Patrick’s Day in County Down, Ireland. He
married Maria Branwell of Cornwall in 1812 and they had six children
that included the writers Charlotte and Emily. Mrs. Branwell died in
1821 at 38.
(WP, 1952, p.34)
1779 May 28, Thomas Moore,
Irish poet, was born.
1780 Sheep were introduced to
Ireland from Scotland.
(SFCM, 10/14/01, p.25)
1782 Jul 26, John Field,
pianist, composer (Nocturnes), was born in Dublin, Ireland.
1783 Jun 1, Charles Byrne (22),
known as the Irish giant, died. Standing at seven feet seven inches
tall (2.3 meters) he was a celebrity in his own lifetime. When he
died the renowned surgeon and anatomist John Hunter was keen to
acquire his skeleton. Byrne wanted to be buried at sea. The surgeon
managed to bribe one of the Irishman's friends and took his body
before it could be laid to rest in the English Channel. Hunter
boiled Byrne's body down to a skeleton and it became a key feature
of his anatomy collection. In 2011 Experts called for the skeleton
to be buried at sea, as Byrne wanted.
1784 Apr 15, The first balloon
flight occurred in Ireland. [see Jun 5, 1783 in France]
1787 Robert Barker, an Irish
painter, is credited with inventing the panorama and patented the
idea in this year.
(WSJ, 9/3/98, p.A20)
1791 The United Irishmen
Society was formed. Inspired by the French Revolution many Catholics
and Protestants took up the cause of Irish nationalism during the
(SFEC, 12/22/96, Z1 p.6)
1795 The Loyal Orange
Institution was established in Portadown to proclaim Protestant
ascendancy. The Orange Order was founded as a force for uniting
disparate Protestant denominations under one anti-Catholic banner.
It was instrumental in creating Northern Ireland in 1921 shortly
before the predominantly Catholic rest of Ireland won independence
(SFEC, 12/22/96, Z1 p.6)(SFC, 7/12/99, p.A19)(AP,
1797 Jul 9, Edmund Burke
(b.1729), Irish-born British statesman, parliament leader, died. His
writing included “Reflections on the Revolution in France" (1790).
In 2013 Jesse Norman authored “Edmund Burke: The First
1798 May 24, Believing that a
French invasion of Ireland was imminent, Irish nationalists rose up
against the British occupation. It was put down by the Orange
yeomanry who were enlisted by the government to restore peace. The
slogan "Croppies lie down" originated here after some of the rebel
Catholics had their hair cropped in the French revolutionary manner.
(SFEC, 7/12/98, p.A15)(HN, 5/24/99)
1798 May 26, British killed
about 500 Irish insurgents at the Battle of Tara.
1798 Nov 1, Benjamin Lee
Guinness, Irish brewer and Dublin mayor, was born.
(HN, 11/1/00)(MC, 11/1/01)
1798 Lord Edward Fitzgerald, an
Irish rebel, was killed. He had fathered a daughter with Elizabeth
Linley (d.1792), the wife of Richard Brinsley Sheridan.
(WSJ, 11/20/98, p.W6)
1800 Mar 28, The Parliament in
Westminster passed an Act of Union formally binding Ireland with
England and abolished the Irish parliament. The Act of Union
entailed the loss of legislative independence of the Irish
Parliament. The Act of Union received royal assent on August 1 and
became effective on Jan 1, 1801.
12/22/96, Z1 p.6)(WSJ, 11/20/98, p.W6)
1800-1850 Thomas Flanagan (d.2002 at 78),
Irish-American author, wrote a scholarly work on the Irish novelists
of this period: "The Irish Novelists: 1800-1850."
(SFC, 3/30/02, p.A19)
1801 Jan 1, The Act of Union
formally binding Ireland with England and abolishing the Irish
parliament, became effective.
12/22/96, Z1 p.6)(WSJ, 11/20/98, p.W6)
1803 Jul 23, Irish patriots
throughout the country rebelled against Union with Great Britain.
Robert Emmett led the insurrection in Dublin.
(HN, 7/23/98)(MC, 7/23/02)
1803 Sep 20, Robert Emmet,
Irish nationalist, was executed.
1804 A stone signal tower was
built on Clare Island as part of a series along the Irish west coast
in fear of an invasion by Napoleon.
(SFEC, 4/12/98, p.T8)
1805 Aug 4, William Rowan
Hamilton (d.1865), Irish scientist, was born.
1812 Jun 18, The War of 1812
began as the United States declared war against Great Britain and
Ireland. The term "war hawk" was first used by John Randolph in
reference to those Republicans who were pro-war in the years leading
up to the War of 1812. These new types of Republicans, who espoused
nationalism and expansionism, included Henry Clay and John C.
Calhoun. Most of them came from the agrarian areas of the South and
West. In 2004 Walter R. Borneman authored “1812: The War That Forged
(AP, 6/18/97)(HN, 6/18/98)(HNQ, 5/13/99)(WSJ,
1820-1920 Some 6 million Irish people, 90% of them
Catholic, immigrated to America.
(WSJ, 10/27/08, p.A15)
1822 Dec 26, Dion Boucicault,
Irish-US actor and playwright (Rip van Winkle), was born.
1824-1877 Julia Kavanagh, Irish novelist: "The
slight that can be conveyed in a glance, in a gracious smile, in a
wave of the hand, is often the ne plus ultra of art. What insult is
so keen or so keenly felt, as the polite insult which it is
impossible to resent?"
1827 Catherine McAuley
(1787-1841), founded the Sisters of Mercy in Dublin, Ireland. They
engaged chiefly in works of spiritual and corporal mercy. Frances
Warde led the sisters out from Ireland. In 2002 John J. Fialka
authored "Sisters: Catholic Nuns and the Making of America."
(WUD, 1994 p.1333)(SSFC, 1/19/03, p.M6)
1829 Daniel O’Connell, an Irish
Catholic, took a seat in the House of Commons and began to work for
the repeal of the union between Britain and Ireland. Nationalistic
sentiments became identified mainly with the Catholics.
(SFEC, 12/22/96, Z1 p.6)
1832 Mar 12, Charles Boycott,
estate manager who caused boycotts, was born in Ireland.
1832 Aug, In Pennsylvania 57
Irish immigrants died of cholera after traveling there to build a
railroad. In 2009 their bones were found at a woodsy site known as
Duffy's Cut, named after Philip Duffy, who hired the immigrants from
Donegal, Tyrone and Derry to help build the Philadelphia and
1837 Jan 11, John Field (54),
Irish pianist, composer (Nocturnes), died.
1838 Sep 11, John Ireland, US
archbishop of St. Paul, was born in Ireland.
1839 Cesar Otway wrote "Tour of
(SFEC, 4/12/98, p.T8)
1845 Aug, The Irish potato crop
was attacked by the Phytophthora infestans fungus. It was first
noticed in County Fermanagh. It blackened the potato leaves and
caused the tubers in the ground to putrefy. In this year 40% of the
crop was infected.
(WSJ, 11/13/96, p.A22)(USAT, 1/15/97, p.2D)
1845 Frederick Douglas,
African-American statesman, published “The Narrative Life of
Frederick Douglass." He then traveled to Ireland where he received a
hero’s welcome. Irish nationalist Daniel O’Connell saw common cause
between Ireland’s quest for self-rule and the plight of American
slaves. British admirers raised money to buy his freedom and he was
officially manumitted after Hugh Auld, his alleged owner, received a
payment of $711.66.
(WSJ, 3/13/09, p.W2)(ON, 12/09, p.12)
1845-1846 As Ireland’s potato crop was consumed by
blight. The nation’s peasants, who relied on the potato as their
primary food source, starved. The famine took as many as one million
lives from hunger and disease and caused mass emigration. The
British government responded to the calamity too late with too
little aid, even though eyewitnesses reported the suffering in the
1845-1850 A fungus of the genus Phytophtora caused
the Irish potato famine.
(SFC, 8/1/00, p.A13)
1845-1855 Some 1.5 million people left Ireland and
many of them made New York City their home.
(AM, Mar/Apr 97 p.49)
1845-1857 Mary E. Daly, Dublin, covered this
period in her essay on potato famine relief: "The Operations of
(WSJ, 11/13/96, p.A22)
1845-1998 This period is covered in the 3-part TV
series "The Irish in America: Long Journey Home" by Thomas Lennon.
(WSJ, 1/26/98, p.A16)
1846 Jan 25, The dreaded Corn
Laws, which taxed imported oats, wheat and barley, were repealed by
the British Parliament in response to the Irish potato famine of
(HN, 1/25/99)(WSJ, 3/29/04, p.A8)
1846 Jun 27, Charles Stewart
Parnell (d.1891), Irish nationalist hero, was born.
(HFA, '96, p.32)(AHD, 1971, p.954)(HN, 6/27/98)
1846 People began starving to
death due to the potato famine.
(USAT, 1/15/97, p.2D)
1847 Nov 8, Bram Stoker,
author, was born. His novels included "Dracula" (1897). [see Nov 24]
(WUD, 1994 p.432)(HN, 11/8/00)
1847 Nov 24, Bram Stoker, Irish
theater manager and author (Dracula), was born. [see Nov 8]
1847 Nov, Dennis Mahon, mayor
of Strokestown, was shot dead in an ambush. He had thrown thousands
of poor farmers off the land during the famine and had paid to have
some 1000 small farmers shipped to North America so he could
establish larger farms. He was killed after it was learned that half
of the shipped people died enroute.
(USAT, 1/15/97, p.2D)
1847 Britain passed a Vagrancy
Act to combat begging as famine swept Ireland.
1847 In Ireland a new British
Poor Law dumped the cost of relief on the already strapped Irish
(WSJ, 1/26/98, p.A1)
1847 The potato harvest was
only 10% of normal and some 3 million people (40% of the populace)
lined up for free food and soup.
(USAT, 1/15/97, p.2D)
1848 Jul 29, An Irish rebellion
against British rule was put down in a cabbage patch in Tipperary,
Ireland. Irish Nationalists under William Smith O'Brien were
overcome and arrested.
(HN, 7/29/98)(WSJ, 5/15/08, p.A15)
1848 In Ireland a group of
writers, poets and orators, collectively known as Young Ireland,
attempted to spark the Irish people into rebelling against Britain.
They included Thomas D’Arcy McGee (1825-1868), who had returned to
Ireland from the US to support the cause. A warrant for his arrest
forced him to return to the US.
1849 Mar 7, William Alexander
Coulter (d.1936), maritime artist, was born in Glenariff, Ireland,
where his father was captain in the Coast Guard.
1850 Mar 29, Ireland's SS Royal
Adelaide sank in storm and 200 people died.
1850-1859 The 1st recipe for ginger ale was
created in Ireland in the 1850s.
(SFC, 6/29/05, p.F12)
1852 Mar 4, Lady (Isabella
Augusta) Gregory, Irish playwright, was born. She helped found the
1852 Sep 30, Charles Villiers
Stanford, Irish organist and composer, was born.
1854 Oct 16, Oscar Wilde (born
as Fingal O'Flahertie Wills, d.1900), dramatist, poet, novelist and
critic, was born in Dublin. His work included "The Picture of Dorian
Gray." "Anybody can make history. Only a great man can write
it." [see 1856-1900]
(HN, 10/16/98)(AP, 2/16/99)(MC, 10/16/01)
1854 The first lighthouse on
Fastnet rock off of southwest Ireland was completed. Work on a
replacement began in 1896. In 2004 James Morrissey authored “A
History of the Fastnet Lighthouse."
(Econ, 12/20/08, p.100)
1854 Five Sisters of
Presentation (f.1776) arrived in San Francisco from Ireland to teach
the children of miners.
(SFC, 11/12/04, p.F11)
1856 Jul 26, George Bernard
Shaw (d.1950), Irish-born, English dramatist, critic and social
reformer (Pygmalion-Nobel 1925), was born in Dublin. "The worst sin
toward our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be
indifferent to them; that's the essence of inhumanity."
(V.D.-H.K.p.237)(HN, 7/26/98)(AP, 3/15/00)
1856-1900 Oscar Wilde, English [Irish] writer,
poet and dramatist, a rebel of every kind, ended up playing the part
of a mocking fool. He despaired of his countrymen ever waking up,
but they did, for they became enraged by his mockery and jailed him,
ruining his life. He wrote the play "The Importance of Being
Ernest." He was found guilty of violating the Criminal Law Amendment
Act which prohibited indecent relations between consenting adult
males. He served 2 years in prison where he read the whole of Dante
and wrote the letter "De Profundis," and the poem "The Ballad of
Reading Gaol." "At every single moment of one's life one is what one
is going to be no less than what one has been." [see 1854]
(V.D.-H.K.p.279)(HT, 3/97, p.71)(AP, 10/10/99)
1857 Dec 17, Sir Francis
Beaufort (b.1774), Irish-born hydrogapher, died in London. In 2004
Scott Huler authored “Defining the Wind: The Beaufort Scale, and How
a Nineteenth-Century Admiral Turned Science into Poetry."
(NH, 11/1/04, p.51)
1858 Mar 17, The Fenian
Brotherhood, a brigade of the Irish Republican Brotherhood (IRB), a
secret revolutionary group, was founded in Dublin by James Stephens.
John O'Mahony headed the IRB's American wing, popularly known as the
Fenian Brotherhood, which was composed of immigrants and Irish
Americans whose ultimate goal was to free Ireland from British rule.
1858 Aug 5, Cyrus W. Field
completed the first transatlantic cable. It linked Newfoundland to
Ireland. The line went completely dead in October. William Thompson
oversaw the operation at sea aboard the HMS Agamemnon, which laid
half the cable. The other half was laid by the USS Niagara. The
cables had been spliced at a central meeting point on June 26. A new
attempt to lay newly designed cable failed in 1865. Another attempt
in 1866 succeeded.
8/5/08)(ON, 10/10, p.2)
1864 Sep 1, Roger David
Casement, Irish nationalist (Easter uprising 1916), was born.
1864 George Boole, Irish
mathematician and inventor of Boolean algebra, died.
(SFC, 12/2/97, p.C3)
1865 Jun 13, William Butler
Yeats (d.1939), Irish poet and playwright, was born to an
Anglo-Irish family in a Dublin suburb. He is best remembered for his
poems "Byzantium" and "Easter 1916." He won the Nobel Prize in 1923.
The first volume of his autobiography was "Reveries Over Childhood
and Youth" (1915). Richard Ellman published a biography in 1948. The
book "W.B. Yeats: A Life, Vol. 1: The Apprentice Mage 1865-1914," by
R.F. Foster covered this period of Yeats’ life. "The Lake Isle of
Innisfree" is his best known poem. "Too long a sacrifice / Can make
a stone of the heart. / O when may it suffice?"
(V.D.-H.K.p.365)(WSJ, 4/2397, p.A1)(AP,
4/29/98)(HN, 6/13/98)(SFEC, 8/8/99, p.T6)(MC, 6/13/02)
1865 Sep 2, William Rowan
Hamilton, Ireland's greatest man of science who made contributions
in the study of optics and applications of algebra to geometry,
1865 Dec 20, Maude Gonne, Irish
nationalist (Irish Joan of Arc), was born.
1865-1914 The book "W.B. Yeats: A Life, Vol. 1:
The Apprentice Mage," by R.F. Foster covered this period of Yeats’
life. "The Lake Isle of Innisfree" is his best known poem.
(SFEC, 7/13/97, BR p.6)
1865-1939 William Butler Yeats, Irish poet and
playwright. The first volume of his autobiography was "Reveries Over
Childhood and Youth" (1915). Richard Ellman published a biography in
1948. "Too long a sacrifice / Can make a stone of the heart. / O
when may it suffice?"
(V.D.-H.K.p.365)(WSJ, 4/2397, p.A1)(AP, 4/29/98)
1866 Jun 2, Renegade Irish
Fenians surrendered to US forces.
1867 Mar 5, An abortive Fenian
uprising against English rule took place in Ireland. The
unsuccessful rebellion by the Irish Republican Brotherhood, known as
the Fenians, gave Australia it final generation of convicts. The
1999 book "The Great Shame and the Triumph of the Irish in the
English-Speaking World" by Thomas Keneally tells the story of the
Irish shipped to Australia.
(AP, 3/5/98)(SFEC, 9/26/99, BR p.1,6)
1867 Apr 10, A.E. (George
William Russell), Irish poet and mystic, was born.
1867 Jun 17, John Robert Gregg,
inventor (shorthand), was born in Ireland.
Oct 31, William Parson (b.1800), 3rd Earl of Rosse and maker of
large telescopes, died. Parsons, an Irish astronomer, built the
largest reflecting telescope of the 19th century. He learned to
polish metal mirrors (1827) and spent the next few years building a
36-inch telescope. He later completed a giant 72-inch telescope
(1845) which he named "Leviathan," It remained the largest ever
built until decades after his death. He was the first to resolve the
spiral shape of objects, previously seen as only clouds, which were
much later identified as galaxies independent of our own Milky Way
galaxy and millions of light-years away. His first such sighting was
made in 1845, and by 1850 he had discovered 13 more. In 1848, he
found and named the Crab Nebula (he thought it resembled a crab), by
which name it is still known.
1867 Dec 13, The Clerkenwell
bombing killed 12 people. It was an attempt to free Richard
O’Sullivan-Burke, a senior Fenian arms agent, and was the most
infamous action carried out by the Fenians in Britain.
1868 Apr 7, Thomas D’Arcy
McGee, Irish patriot and author, was shot and killed in Ottawa,
Canada. Patrick J. Whelan, a Fenian sympathizer, was accused, tried,
convicted, and hanged for the crime. In 2008 David A. Wilson
authored Thomas D’Arcy McGee: Passion, Reason and Politics
1868 May 26, Michael Barrett,
Irish nationalist, was executed for his part in the 1867 Clerkenwell
bombing. This was the last British public execution.
1870 William Robinson
(1838-1935), Irish gardener and journalist, authored “The Wild
Garden." His most famous contribution to gardening was his book The
English Flower Garden, (1883).
1871 Apr 16, John Millington
Synge (d.1909), dramatist and poet, was born in Ireland.
1871 John Tyndall, Irish
scientist, authored “Fragments of Science." He was in effect the
first science popularizer.
(WSJ, 4/14/07, p.P10)
1874 Dion Boucicault, Irish
playwright, authored "The Shaughraun." It was a serious picture of
oppressed Ireland and a satirical take on human folly.
(WSJ, 11/18/98, p.A20)
1880 Feb 9, James Stephens
(d.1950), Irish poet and novelist, was born. His work included "The
Charwoman's Daughter" and "The Crock of Gold." "Originality does not
consist in saying what no one has ever said before, but in saying
exactly what you think yourself."
(AP, 5/21/99)(HN, 2/9/01)
1880 Mar 30, Sean O'Casey (d.
1964), Irish playwright, was born. "It is my rule never to lose me
temper till it would be detrimental to keep it."
(AP, 3/17/00)(HN, 3/30/01)
1880 Irish tenant farmers,
seeking rent cuts after poor harvests, staged a protest and refused
to respond to eviction notices from estate manager Charles Boycott
(WSJ, 1/11/99, p.R49)
1882 Feb 2, James Joyce
(d.1941), Irish novelist and poet was born near Dublin. He wrote
"Ulysses" and "Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man." From
"Ulysses": "History, Stephen said, is a nightmare from which I am
trying to awake." In 1998 John Wyse Jackson and Peter Costello
published the biography: "John Stanislaus Joyce: The Voluminous Life
and Genius of James Joyce’s Father."
(AP, 6/22/98)(AP, 2/2/99)(HN, 2/2/99)
1882 Mar 26, Oscar Wilde
arrived in SF for a series of lectures. His first lecture on “The
English Renaissance," was given the next night at Platt’s Hall at
Bush and Montgomery.
(SFEC,11/16/97, DB p.3)(SFC, 10/12/12, p.C3)
1882 Oct 14, Eamon DeValera,
Taoiseach and President of Ireland (1937-48, 51-54, 57-59), was born
1884 Jun 14, John McCormack,
Irish-US singer (Irish folksongs), was born.
1884 The Gaelic Athletic
Association was founded in Ireland to promote traditional Irish
(Econ, 8/6/05, p.45)
1886 Jul 13, Father Edward J.
Flanagan, catholic priest, founder of Boys Town, was born in
1886 Many islanders on Aran
left after a parish priest sent the message: "Send us boats or send
(SFEC, 1/23/00, p.T9)
1888 Mar 10, Barry Fitzgerald,
actor (Acad Award-Going My Way), was born in Dublin, Ireland.
1890 Oct 16, Michael Collins
(d.1922), Irish revolutionist, was born.
1890 The Home Rule movement of
the Irish Nationalist Party led by Charles Stewart Parnell was set
back when his love affair with Katherine O’Shea was revealed in the
(WSJ, 9/3/96, p.A14)
1891 Oct 6, Charles Stewart
Parnell (b.1846) died in Brighton, England. Irish statesman and
leader of the Irish nationalists in the British House of Commons
from 1880-‘90, Charles Parnell’s popularity in Ireland was so great
that he was called "the uncrowned king of Ireland." Parnell formed a
coalition with William Gladstone, who became prime minister and
introduced a bill for Irish home rule in 1886. The bill was
defeated. In 1890, as a result of a divorce scandal, Parnell was
deposed as leader of the Irish nationalists.
(AP, 10/6/97)(HNQ, 7/20/98)
1891 Oct 11, Charles Stewart
Parnell (d.Oct 6) was buried in Ireland.
1892 Jan 1, The US Immigration
Service, after two years of construction, opened Ellis Island in New
York Harbor, a new facility for "processing" immigrants. Annie Moore
(15) of County Cork, Ireland, was the 1st person processed. The new
facility replaced Castle Garden, which was closed because of massive
overcrowding and corruption. The money changing concession was later
granted to American Express to end the cheating of immigrants.
Formerly used as a munitions dump and landfill, Ellis Island was
designed, its architects claimed, to handle more than 8,000
newcomers a day. Orderly lines funneled bewildered immigrants past
doctors and officials who examined them for signs of disease. The
physically and mentally ill were refused admittance, forcing
thousands of families to make the difficult decision to return home
with a relative refused entry or push on without them. A final
brusque interview by an immigration official determined whether the
newcomers had already been promised jobs. About 80% of those who
entered Ellis Island received landing cards permitting them to board
ferries for NYC. In the 1890s, 75% of all immigrants entered the US
through Ellis Island. It was closed in 1954.
(AP, 1/1/98)(HNPD, 1/1/99)(AP, 1/1/98)(SFC,
3/21/98, p.E3)(HNPD, 9/18/98)(SFEC, 6/20/99, p.T10)
1892-1983 Dame Rebecca West, Irish author and
journalist: "Those who foresee the future and recognize it as tragic
are often seized by a madness which forces them to commit the very
acts which makes it certain that what they dread shall happen."
"There is no such thing as conversation. It is an illusion. There
are intersecting monologues, that is all."
(AP, 9/5/98)(AP, 4/9/99)
1895 Mar, Bridget Cleary (26)
disappeared from her home in County Tipperary. Her burned body was
found several days later. Her husband, father and several relatives
and friends were charged with murder. Prosecutors maintained that
she was burned because her husband believed her to be a changeling.
In 2000 Angela Bourke authored "The Burning of Bridget Cleary: A
True Story," and Joan Hoff and Marion Yeates authored ""The Cooper’s
Wife Is Missing: The Trials of Bridget Cleary."
(SFEC, 9/10/00, BR p.5)
1896 Aug 28, Liam O’Flaherty,
Irish novelist, was born.
1896 Bewley’s Oriental Cafes
opened a shop on Westmoreland Street in Dublin, Ireland. It later
became a hangout for James Joyce. It was scheduled to close in 2004.
(SSFC, 11/14/04, p.F2)
1896 Irish poet W.B. Yeats met
Irish playwright John Millington Synge in Paris and suggested Synge
go and live on the Aran Islands. Synge took his advice and spent
years there developing a whole new language for his plays. Synge
also spent time on Great Blasket. In 2012 Robert Kanigel authored
“On an Irish Island."
(SSFC, 3/11/12, p.F5)
1897 May 18, An Irish Music
Festival was 1st held in Dublin.
1897 Jun 19, Charles Cunningham
Boycott (b.Mar 12, 1832) English land agent in Ireland, died in
England. He was a faulty estate manager whose tenants "boycotted"
him into poverty; when the crops failed and the farmers went broke,
he unsympathetically gave them the choice of paying immediately or
being evicted. The farmers retaliated and his staff quit. His family
was isolated. This tactic gave us the word whose last name became
part of the English language.
1897 Dec 3, Kate O'Brien, Irish
writer (Without My Cloak), was born.
1899 Jun 7, Elizabeth Bowen
(d.1973), Irish-British novelist and short story writer (The Death
of the Heart), was born in Dublin. "One can live in the shadow of an
idea without grasping it." "The charm, one might say the genius of
memory, is that it is choosy, chancy and temperamental: it rejects
the edifying cathedral and indelibly photographs the small boy
outside, chewing a hunk of melon in the dust."
(AP, 4/19/97)(AP, 8/5/97)(HN, 6/7/01)
1900 Feb 22, Sean O’Faolain,
Irish short story writer, was born.
1900 Nov 30, Irish author Oscar
Wilde (b.1856) died in Paris.
1900 The US Navy commissioned
its first submarine, the USS Holland, for $150,000. It was named
after the Irish inventor John Holland. His first sub was the Fenian
Ram, paid for by Irish rebels hoping to challenge British control of
(SFEC, 8/11/96, zone 1, p.6)(WSJ, 4/28/00, p.W17)
1902 The British enacted a law
that froze the number of pubs at the existing level to help reduce
(WSJ, 3/17/99, p.A1)
1903-1966 Michael O’Donovan (aka Frank O’Connor),
Irish writer, was born in Cork. His work included "The Big Fellow:
Michael Collins & The Irish Revolution."
(SFEM, 5/24/98, p.11)
1904 Jan 25, J.M. Synge's
"Riders to the Sea," premiered in Dublin. [see Feb 25]
1904 Feb 25, J.M. Synge's play
"Riders to the Sea" opened in Dublin. [see Jan 25]
1904 Apr 27, Cecil Day-Lewis,
Irish poet, father of actor Daniel Day-Lewis, was born.
1904 Jun 16, Bloomsday. The
1922 novel “Ulysses" by James Joyce was set on this day. It charts
the wanderings of Leopold Bloom and Stephen Dedalus among Dublin
streets and beaches, museums and galleries, pubs and brothels
through the ebb and tide of their memories and emotions. The "same
day that the penniless and Myopic Jimmy Joyce (22) first walked out
with the redheaded chambermaid Nora Barnacle," (20) who became his
Molly Bloom. In 1988 Brenda Maddox authored "Nora: The Real Life of
(SFC, 6/13/96, p.C6)(SFEC, 10/31/99, BR p.7)(AP,
1904 Jun 27, The 2nd Fastnet
Lighthouse was completed off of southwest Ireland.
1904 Aug 20, Dublin’s Abbey
Theatre was founded, an outgrowth of the Irish Literary Theatre
founded in 1899 by William Butler Yeats and Lady Gregory.
1904 Oct 8, James Joyce and
Nora Barnacle left together for Switzerland for a job in a Berlitz
school that never materialized. They continued on to Pola and then
to Trieste where he wrote most of "The Dubliners."
(SFEM, 1/25/98, p.69)
1904 George Bernard Shaw wrote
his play "John Bull’s Other Island," a study of the Irish problem.
(WSJ, 7/29/98, p.A13)
1905 Nov 28, Arthur Griffith
formed Sinn Fein in Dublin. Sinn Fein is Gaelic for "we ourselves,"
but also for "ourselves alone." This political party became the
unofficial political wing of militant Irish groups in their struggle
against British rule.
1905-1967 Patrick Kavanaugh, poet, author of
"Raglan Road," which Joan Osborne later put to the music of the song
"At the Dawning of the Day."
(WSJ, 3/17/99, p.A24)
1906 Apr 13, Samuel Beckett
(d.1989), Irish (French) novelist-playwright, Nobel Prize winner in
1969, (Waiting for Godot), was born. He settled in France and wrote
in French and then translated to English. Sometimes he reversed the
process. His work included "Act Without Words" (1956), "Happy Days"
(1960-61), "Rough for Theater II" (1976), "Catastrophe" (1982) and
"What’s There" (1983). Also the prose trilogy "Molloy," "Malone
Dies" and "The Unnamable." In 1996 James Knowlson wrote his study of
Beckett: "Damned to Fame: The Life of Samuel Beckett." "We are all
born mad. Some of us remain so."
(V.D.-H.K.p.369)(SFEC, 10/27/96, BR p.5)(HN,
1907 Jan 26, John Millington
Synge’s “The Playboy of the Western World" opened at the Abbey
Theater in Dublin. Many Irish nationalists found it so offensive
that they embarked on a semi-organized campaign to bring down the
1907 Oct 17, Guglielmo Marconi
began offering limited commercial wireless telegraph service between
Nova Scotia and Ireland.
1909 Mar 24, John Millington
Synge (b.1871), Irish dramatist and poet, died in Dublin. He is best
known for his play “The Playboy of the Western World," which caused
riots during its opening run at the Abbey Theatre.
1910 Oct 28, Francis Bacon
(d.1992), English artist who painted expressionist portraits, was
born in Dublin to English parents. He had no formal training as an
artist. After earning a modest reputation in the 1920s as a
modernist interior designer, he began oil painting in 1929. He first
established himself as a major in 1944, when his now-famous triptych
Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion was exhibited
at London’s Tate Gallery.
(HN, 10/28/98)(MIA, www,1999)
1911 May 17, Maureen O’Sullivan
(d.1998), film actress, was born in Boyle, Ireland.
(SFC, 6/24/98, p.C2)
1911 Oct 5, Flann O’Brien,
Irish novelist and playwright, was born. His work included "The Hard
Life" and "The Third Policeman."
1912 Jan 30, The British House
of Lords opposed the House of Commons by rejecting home rule for
1913 Irish writer Howard Ward
authored “The Mystery of Dr. Fu Manchu," his first Fu Manchu novel,
under the pen-name Sax Rohmer. It collated various short stories
published the preceding year.
1913 Eamon de Valera (31),
mathematics teacher in Dublin, joined the Irish Volunteers, a group
that was preparing to use violence to win Ireland’s independence.
(ON, 9/04, p.5)
1914 Apr 7, British House of
Commons passed the Irish Home Rule Bill.
1914 Jul 20, Armed resistance
against British rule began in Ulster.
1914 Jul 27, British troops
invaded the streets of Dublin, Ireland, and began to disarm Irish
1914 Sep 18, The Irish Home
Rule Bill became law, but was delayed until after World War I. The
Government of Ireland Act became law. It was an act by the British
government to take effect at the end of World War I.
(WSJ,3/13/95, p.A-15)(HN, 9/18/98)
1915-1939 The book "W.B. Yeats: A Life, Vol. 2:
The Arch Poet," by R.F. Foster covered this period of Yeats’ life.
(WSJ, 11/13/03, p.D8)
1916 Apr 24, Some 1,600 Irish
nationalist, the Irish Volunteers, launched the Easter Rising by
seizing several key sites in Dublin, including the General Post
Office. Eemon de Valera was one of the commandants in the uprising.
It was provoked by impatience with the lack of home rule and was put
down by British forces several days later. Michael Collins, a member
of Sinn Fein, led the guerrilla warfare. 116 soldiers and 16
policemen were slain along with 62 rebels. The 1999 novel "A Star
Called Henry" by Roddy Doyle was set in this period. Film footage of
the Easter Rising was sold at auction in 2000 for $115,000 to a
private Irish resident.
(WSJ, 10/11/96, p.A8)(SFEC, 12/22/96, Z1 p.6)(AP,
4/24/97)(SFEC, 9/19/99, BR p.1)(SFEC, 6/11/00, p.A30)(ON, 9/04, p.5)
1916 re: Apr 24, In "Easter"
William Butler Yeats wrote: "All changed, changed utterly: A
terrible beauty is born."
(NOHY, 3/1990, p.212)
1916 re: Apr 24, "The history
taught stopped at 1916, they didn’t deal with the war of
independence or the civil war." Thus said Neil Jordan, director of
the 1996 film "Michael Collins."
(SFC, 9/22/96, Par p.31)
1916 Apr 28, The British
declared martial law throughout Ireland.
1916 Apr 29, The Easter Rising
in Dublin collapsed as Irish nationalists surrendered to British
authorities. Irish nationalists set post office on fire in Dublin
during Easter Uprising.
(AP, 4/29/98)(HN, 4/29/98)(MC, 4/29/02)
1916 May 3, Irish nationalist
Padraic Pearse and two others were executed by the British for their
roles in the Easter Rising.
1916 Jun 29, Sir Roger David
Casement, the Irish-born diplomat knighted by King George V in 1911,
was convicted of treason for his role in Ireland's Easter Rebellion,
and sentenced to death. He had been caught on an Irish beach during
a foiled attempt to 20,000 German rifles.
1916 Jul 1, British court
martial was held for the Dublin Easter uprising.
1916 Aug 3, Roger Casement,
knighted for his service in the Congo, was hanged at London’s
Pentonville Prison for his activities on behalf of Irish
1916 The 1936 film "The Plough
and the Stars" was an adaptation of a Sean O’Casey play. It starred
Barbara Stanwyck and Barry Fitzgerald and was directed by John Ford.
It was about events in Ireland leading up to the 1916 uprising.
(SFEC, 3/15/98, DB p.57)
1916-1922 Charlie Dalton later wrote the book
"With the Dublin Brigade" that covers this period.
(SFEC, 10/20/96, p.C13)
1917 Feb 8, The British
steamship Mantola was torpedoed by a German submarine off the coast
of Ireland. All but seven crew members, who drowned when their
lifeboat overturned, were rescued by the HMS Laburnum. The ship sank
the next day. The British Ministry of War Transport paid a War Risk
Insurance Claim for £110,000 (in 1917 value) for silver that was on
board when the ship sank. In 2011 Odyssey Marine Exploration
discovered the ship.
1917 Jun 15, Great Britain
pledged the release of all Irish captured during the Easter
Rebellion of 1916.
1917 Eamon de Valera was
released from prison after serving 14 months for his role in the
1916 Irish Easter Uprising. He soon won a seat in the British
Parliament representing County Clare, and was elected leader of Sinn
Fein and president of the Irish Volunteers.
(ON, 9/04, p.5)
1917 W.B. Yeats (52) married
Bertha Georgie Hyde-Lees (d.1968), his young spirit-medium (25). She
became the oracular voice of his philosophy and poetry. In 2002 Ann
Saddlemeyer authored "Becoming George: The Life of Mrs. W.B. Yeats."
(SFEC, 10/31/99, BR p.7)(SSFC, 11/10/02, p.M2)
1918 May 17, British
authorities arrested Irish leader Eamon de Valera and other Sinn
Fein leaders on suspicion of conspiring with the Germans.
(ON, 9/04, p.5)
1919 Jan 21, Several IRA
members acting independently at Soloheadbeg, in County Tipperary,
led by Seán Treacy, Seamus Robinson, Sean Hogan and Dan Breen,
attacked and shot two Royal Irish Constabulary officers, Constables
James McDonnell and Patrick O'Connell, who were escorting
1919 Feb 3, Eamon de Valera,
Sinn Fein leader, and 2 other men escaped from England’s Lincoln
Jail and made their way home to Ireland.
(ON, 9/04, p.7)
1919 Apr 5, Eamon de Valera
became Taoiseach (prime minister) of Ireland (Dail Eireann).
(HN, 5/5/97)(MC, 4/5/02)
1919 May 1, Dan O'Herlihy,
actor (Fail Safe, Last Starfighter, Robocop), was born in Ireland.
1919 Jun 11, Richard Todd,
actor (Dorian Gray, Assassin Yangtze Incident), was born in
1919 Jun 11, Eamon de Valera,
Sinn Fein leader, arrived in NYC where he lived until 1921 raising
funds for the nationalist cause in Ireland.
(ON, 9/04, p.7)
1919 Jun 14, Pilot John William
Alcock (1892-1919) and navigator Arthur Witten Brown (1886-1948)
took off from St. John’s, Newfoundland, for Clifden, Ireland, on the
first nonstop transatlantic flight. The flight lasted 16 hours and
28 minutes and carried the first transatlantic airmail. They won a
10 thousand pound prize, first offered by the Daily Mail in 1913.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Whitten_Brown)(ON, 4/09, p.1)
1919 Jul 15, Iris Murdoch
(d.1999), philosopher-novelist, was born in Dublin. She wrote 28
novels and in 1998 published "Existentialists and Mystics," a
collection of writings from 1950 to the 1980s. Herein she tried to
"recover the moral dimension of art."
1919 Aug, The British regime
banned Ireland’s Sinn Fein.
1919 Sep, The British regime
banned the Irish Parliament (Dail Eireann).
1919 Joseph Larmor (1857-1942),
Irish mathematician, proposed that the Earth’s magnetic field was
generated spontaneously by the swirling of molten metal inside the
(Econ, 2/3/07, p.81)
1920 Mar 31, British parliament
accepted Irish "Home Rule" law.
1920 Dec 23, Ireland was
divided into 2 parts, each with its own parliament. An act of
British Parliament split Northern Ireland from Ireland.
(SFC, 6/18/96, p.A8)(MC, 12/23/01)
1920 Another Government of
Ireland Act was passed by the British government. This act had a
proviso that the reunification of Ireland was an ultimate goal.
1921 Feb 18, British troops
1921 Feb, The obscenity trial
over the publication of James Joyce’s Ulysses in The Little Review ,
an American literary magazine, effectively banned publication
of Joyce's novel in the United States.
1921 Jul 8, Great Britain and
Ireland agreed to end hostilities after centuries of strife. In
December British and Irish representatives signed a treaty in London
providing for creation of an Irish Free State a year later on the
same date. Southern Ireland was granted independence and 6 counties
in Northern Ireland remained part of the UK.
(SFC, 10/14/99, p.C5)(AP, 12/6/06)
1921 Aug 17, Maureen O'Hara,
actress (Miracle on 34th St), was born in Dublin, Ireland.
1921 Dec 5, The British Empire
reached an accord with Sinn Fein; Ireland was to become a free
1921 Dec 6, British and Irish
representatives signed a treaty in London providing for creation of
an Irish Free State a year later on the same date. The partition
created Northern Ireland. [see Jul 8] Ireland’s 26 southern counties
became independent from Britain forming the Irish Free State.
(HN, 12/6/00)(AP, 12/6/06)
1921 Dec 8, Eamon de Valera
publicly repudiated the Anglo-Irish Treaty.
1921 Seamus MacManus authored
"The Story of the Irish Race."
(SFEC, 10/8/00, p.T5)
1921 Michael Collins and
statesman Arthur Griffith set up the Irish Free State (the Republic
of Ireland). Several northern counties went over to Britain.
(SFEC, 12/22/96, Z1 p.6)
c1921 Michael Collins, founder
of the Irish Volunteers (precursor to the IRA), lost a political
fight to Eamon de Valera, who went on to run the country for 50
(SFC, 9/22/96, Parade p.31)
1922 Apr 14, Irish Republic
rebels occupied 4 government courts in Dublin.
1922 Jun 30, Irish rebels in
London assassinated Sir Henry Wilson, the British deputy for
1922 Aug 7, The Irish
Republican Army cut the cable link between the United States and
Europe at Waterville landing station.
1922 Aug 22, Michael Collins,
Irish politician, was killed in an ambush.
1922 Sep 9, William T. Cosgrave
replaced assassinated Irish leader Michael Collins.
1922 Oct 24, Irish Parliament
adopted a constitution for an Irish Free State.
1922 Nov 6, King George V
proclaimed Irish Free state.
1922 Dec 6, The Irish Free
State came into being under terms of the Anglo-Irish Treaty.
1922 The Irish Republican Army
refused to accept a separate Northern Ireland under British rule.
(SFEC, 12/22/96, Z1 p.7)
1922 A cease-fire was
(SFEC, 10/20/96, p.C4)
1922 Revolutionary Erskine
Childers was killed by Irish Free State forces. His son later became
president, and his grandson a UN official.
(SFC, 4/9/96, p.A17)
1923 Feb 9, Brendan Behan,
Irish playwright and poet, was born in Dublin, Ireland. His work
included "The Hostage" and "The Quare Fellow."
(HN, 2/9/01)(MC, 2/9/02)
1923 Aug 15, Eamon de Valera
was arrested in Irish Free State.
1923 Sep 10, The Irish Free
state joined the League of Nations.
1923 W.B. Yeats wrote his poem
"Leda and the Swan."
(SFEC, 10/31/99, BR p.7)
1923 William Butler Yeats,
Irish poet, won the Nobel Prize in Literature.
(SFEC, 8/8/99, p.T6)
1924 Mar 3, Sean O'Casey's
"Juno and the Paycock" premiered in Dublin.
1924 Mar 19, Charles Villiers
Stanford (71), Irish composer, author, died.
1924 Mar 29, Charles Villiers
Stanford (71), Irish composer, writer, died.
1925 Aug, The first Fastnet
race, with seven entries, was won by the Jolie Brise. The race
starts off Cowes on the Isle of Wight in England, rounds the Fastnet
Rock off the southwest coast of Ireland and then finishes at
Plymouth in the South of England.
1925-1961 In Ireland 796 babies and toddlers were
buried in a septic tank at a home for unmarried mothers in Tuam
County, Galway. This was reported in 2014 and put the government
under pressure to launch an investigation.
(SSFC, 6/8/14, p.A4)(SFC, 6/9/14, p.A2)(Econ,
1926 Feb 8, Sean O'Casey's
"Plough & Stars" opened at Abbey Theater Dublin.
1926 Apr 7, Mussolini's Irish
wife broke his Italian nose.
1926 May 16, In Ireland Eamon
de Valera founded the Fianna Fail party. It emerged from a split
among those in the Sinn Fein Party, who had rejected the Anglo-Irish
Treaty of 1921.
1927 Mar, J.W. Dunne
(1875-1949), Irish engineer and author, published his essay “An
Experiment with Time" on the subjects of precognition and the human
experience of time. His theory suggested that in reality all time is
eternally present, that is, that past, present and future are all
happening together in some way. Human consciousness, however,
experiences this simultaneity in linear form. It was very widely
read, and his ideas were later promoted by several other authors, in
particular by J. B. Priestley. Other books by J. W. Dunne are The
Serial Universe, The New Immortality, and Nothing Dies.
1928 May 4, Thomas Kinsella,
Irish poet, was born.
1928 May 24, William Trevor,
Irish short story writer and novelist (The Old Boys, The Boarding
House), was born.
1928 Jul 4, Stephen Boyd,
[William Millar], actor (Fantastic Voyage, Ben-Hur), was born in
1928 In Dublin, Ireland, the
Gate Theater playhouse was founded by Michael MacLiammoir and Hilton
(WSJ, 8/5/96, p.A10)(SFEM, 9/10/00, p.26)
1929 Tomas O Criomhthain of
Great Blasket Island authored “The Islandman." It became an instant
classic of Gaelic and a sensation following its translation to
(SSFC, 3/11/12, p.F5)
1929 The 1st int'l. festival of
dance was held in Paris. Lucia Joyce (22), daughter of James Joyce,
qualified as one of the 6 finalists. Her beau was Samuel Beckett.
Lucia (d.1982) spent her last 30 years in a mental hospital in
England. In 2003 Carol Loeb Shloss authored "Lucia Joyce: To Dance
in the Wake."
(SSFC, 12/21/03, p.M3)
1930 Mar 30, David Staple,
joint president of the Council of Churches for Britain and Ireland,
1932 Mar 9, Eamon De Valera was
elected Taoiseach (prime minister) of Ireland and pledged to
abolished all loyalty to the British Crown.
1932 Mar 23, Britain warned
Ireland that the loyalty oath was mandatory.
1932 May 20, Amelia Earhart
took off from Newfoundland to become the first woman to fly solo
across the Atlantic. Because of weather and equipment problems,
Earhart set down in Northern Ireland after 13 ½ hours instead of her
intended destination, France.
(HFA, '96, p.30)(HN, 5/20/01)(AP, 5/20/07)(ON,
1932 Jun 5, Christy Brown,
Irish novelist and poet (My Left Foot), was born.
1932 Aug 2, Peter O'Toole,
actor (Lord Jim, Beckett, Lawrence of Arabia), was born in
(HN, 8/2/00)(MC, 8/2/02)
1932 Fianna Fail, led by Irish
premier Eamon de Valera, won a majority in the Dail Eireann, the
Irish legislative assembly.
(ON, 9/04, p.7)
1937 Jul 22, Irish premier
Eamon de Valera won elections. Valera served as prime minister of
Ireland until 1948. he served again from 1951-1954, and again from
(MC, 7/22/02)(ON, 9/04, p.7)
1937 Dec 29, Ireland’s new
constitution came into force. The Irish Free State became Eire. The
constitution included language that made blasphemy a criminal
1938 May 4, Douglas Hyde, a
protestant, became the 1st president of Eire.
1938 Jul 18, Douglas "Wrong
Way" Corrigan arrived in Ireland. He had left NY for Calif. [see Jul
1939-1945 Ireland stayed neutral during WWII. It
barred the Allies’ Atlantic convoys from sheltering in Irish ports,
refused to accept Jewish refugees from continental Europe, and
maintained cordial diplomatic relations with both Germany and Japan.
Nearly 5,000 men deserted its armed forces to fight for Britain.
(SFC, 5/8/13, p.A2)
1939 Apr 13, Seamus Heaney,
Irish poet, Nobel laureate (1995), was born.
1939 Jun, In Britain 50 letter
bombs exploded in postboxes and post offices in London, Birmingham
and Manchester. The IRA claimed responsibility as part of their
(Econ, 11/6/10, p.74)
1939 Jul 27, Michael Longley,
Irish poet, was born.
1939 Sep 2, Ireland’s Taoiseach
de Valera told the lower house of parliament that neutrality was the
best policy for the country. The Irish constitution was amended to
allow the Government to take emergency powers, and then the
Emergency Powers Act 1939 was passed that included censorship of the
press and mail correspondence. In 2007 Clair Wills authored “The
neutral Island: A cultural History of Ireland during the Second
1939 Nov 18, The Irish
Republican Army exploded three bombs in Picadilly Circus.
1939 Dec 8, James Galway,
flutist (18k gold flute, Royal Phil), was born in Belfast, Ireland.
1939 James Joyce had his book
"Finnegan's Wake" published by Viking.
(SFC, 12/9/99, p.B1)
1939 William Butler Yeats,
Irish-born poet, died in Southern France at age 73. He was taken
home to Ireland in 1949. In 1999 Brenda Maddux published "Yeats's
Ghosts: The Secret Life of W.B. Yeats."
(SFEC, 8/8/99, p.T6)
1940 May 28, Maeve Binchy,
Irish writer (Circle of Friends, The Copper Beach), was born.
1940s-1950s The Magdalene Laundries were a
church-run social service for "fallen" or discarded women during
this period. In 1994 Joni Mitchell recorded a song about them on her
"Turbulent Indigo" album.
(WSJ, 3/17/99, p.A24)
1941 Jan 13, James Joyce,
Irish-born novelist, died in Zurich, Switzerland. In 1983 Richard
Ellmann authored the 900-page "James Joyce" biography. In 1999 Edna
O'Brien authored the pocket bio "James Joyce."
(AP, 1/13/98)(SFC, 12/9/99, p.B1)
1942 May 19, Sir Joseph Larmor
(b.1857), professor of mathematics, died in Ireland. His
contributions bridged the old and the new physics. He published
three papers all entitled “A dynamical theory of the electric and
luminiferous medium" between 1894 and 1897. These papers presented
his theory of the electron, which gained further weight in 1897 when
J J Thomson experimentally identified the electron.
(http://tinyurl.com/y9y5wg)(WSJ, 10/13/06, p.A13)
1944 Jan 28, U-271 & U-571
sank off Ireland.
1944 Feb 9, U-734 and U-238
sank off Ireland.
1944 Feb 11, U-424 sank off
1944 Feb 19, U-264 sank off
1944 Mar 10, The Irish refused
to oust all Axis envoys and denied the accusation of spying on
1944 Mar 12, Great Britain
barred all travel to neutral Ireland, which was suspected of
collaborating with Nazi Germany.
1944 May 21, Mary Bourke
Robinson, first woman president of Ireland (1990-1997), was born.
1945 May 3, Ireland’s PM Eamon
de Valera conveyed official condolences to diplomat Eduard Hempel.
Pres. Douglas Hyde also visited German diplomat Eduard Hempel, a day
after Ireland received reports of Hitler's death. Documents
confirming Hyde’s visit were made public in 2005.
1945 Aug 31, Van Morrison,
singer (Here Comes the Night), was born in Belfast, Ireland.
1945 Kevin Roche, architect,
graduated following studies in Dublin. He pursued postgraduate work
at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago after briefly
working for firms in Dublin and London. In 1950, he joined Eero
Saarinen and Associates, becoming the firm's principal associate
from 1954 until Saarinen's death in 1961.
1947 May 18, John Bruton, Prime
Minister (Republic of Ireland), was born.
1947 The first airport
duty-free store opened at Shannon Airport, Ireland.
(WSJ, 1/11/99, p.R49)
1948 Dec 21, The state of Eire
(formerly the Irish Free State) declared its independence.
1949 Feb 10, Elections in
Northern Ireland showed that at least 2/3 of the population favored
continued union with Great Britain.
(EWH, 1968, p.1166)
1949 Apr 17, At midnight 26
counties officially left the British Commonwealth. A 21-gun salute
on O'Connell Bridge, Dublin, ushered in the Republic of Ireland.
1949 Apr 18, The Republic of
Ireland withdrew from the British Commonwealth and was officially
proclaimed in Dublin on the anniversary of the 1916 Easter
rebellion. King George VI sent his good wishes.
(EWH, 1968, p.1166)(AP, 4/18/97)(HN, 4/18/98)
1949 May 17, The British house
of commons adopted the Ireland Bill that recognized the independence
of the Republic of Ireland, but affirmed the position of Northern
Ireland within the United Kingdom.
(EWH, 1968, p.1166)
1950 Jul 26, George Bernard
Shaw (5.1856), Irish-born, English dramatist, critic and social
reformer, died. Michael Holroyd later authored a 3-volume biography
(V.D.-H.K.p.237)(HN, 7/26/98)(SFEC, 3/5/00, DB
1950 Nov 2, George Bernard Shaw
(94), Irish author (Pygmalion), died. [see Jul 26]
1951-1954 Eamon De Valera (b.1882) served his 2nd
of 3 terms as Taoiseach (prime minister) of Ireland.
(http://www.clarelibrary.ie/)(ON, 9/04, p.7)
1952 May 16, Pierce Brosnan,
actor (Remington Steele, Golden Eye), was born in County Meath,
1953 The last 21 residents of
Ireland’s Great Blasket Island were repatriated to the mainland.
(SSFC, 3/11/12, p.F5)
1955 Jan 20, Joe Doherty, IRA
activist (jailed in US), was born in Ireland.
1955 Norris (1925-2004) and
Ross McWhirter (1925-1975) co-created the Guinness Book of Records
as a book for settling bar bets on a commission from the Irish
(WSJ, 4/21/04, p.A1)
1956 Liam Clancy (1935-2009)
emigrated to the US from Ireland to join elder brothers Tom and
Patrick in NYC, who were singing on the side as they pursued careers
as Broadway actors. They recorded an album of Irish rebel songs and
grew a NYC following, together with Tommy Makem, as the Clancy
Brothers. Their appearance on the Ed Sullivan show in 1961 turned
them into an Irish-American folk phenomenon.
(SFC, 12/7/09, p.C4)
1956 A Vogue magazine article
made famous the wool sweaters of Aran.
(SFEC, 1/23/00, p.T10)
1957 Mar 5, Eamon de Valera's
Fianna Fail-party won election in Ireland. DeValera (1882-1975) was
elected Taoiseach (prime minister) and served his 3rd term as PM.
1957 Jul 8, Irish premier Eamon
de Valera arrested Sinn-Fein leaders.
1958 Jul 16, Michael Flatley,
Irish choreographer (Lord of Dance), was born in Chicago, Ill.
1959 Jun 17, Eamon de Valera
was elected president of Ireland.
1959 Sean Lemass became prime
minister of Ireland.
1959 In Ireland the first
modern special economic zone (SEZ) was set up at Shannon Airport.
The idea took off in the 1980s as China embraced them.
(Econ., 4/4/15, p.65)
1961 Jul 31, Ireland formally
applied for membership in the European Community.
1961 Ireland’s PM Sean Lemass
made his son-in-law, Charles J. Haughey, a Cabinet minister.
1962 Nov, The Chieftains were
founded by Paddy Moloney in northern Dublin as a traditional Irish
(WSJ, 3/17/98, p.A16)
1962 In Ireland the Dubliners
folk band formed in the Dublin pub O'Donoghue's. The founders
included Barney McKenna (1939-2012), Ronnie Drew (d.2008), Ciaran
Bourke (d.1988) and Luke Kelly (d.1984).
1962 In Dublin Gay Byrne began
hosting "The Late Late Show" on the new state run RTE TV station.
Byrne retired after 37 years.
(SFC, 5/22/99, p.A14)
1963 Jun 27, Pres. Kennedy
spent his 1st full day in Ireland.
1964 Sep 18, Sean O'Casey,
Irish playwright (Playboy of Western World), died at 84.
1966 Mar 8, An IRA bomb
destroyed Nelson Column in Dublin.
1966 Seamus Heaney (b.1939),
Irish poet (1995 Nobel laureate), authored his collection of verse
“Death of a Naturalist."
(Econ, 4/15/06, p.82)
1966-1973 Jack Lynch served his 1st term as prime
(SFC, 10/22/99, p.B7)
1967 May 11, The United Kingdom
re-applied to join the European Community. It is followed by Ireland
and Denmark and, a little later, by Norway. General de Gaulle is
still reluctant to accept British accession.
1967 Oct 10, Brendan Behan's
"Borstal Boy," premiered in Dublin.
1967 Educational reform
guaranteed the country’s youth a free secondary-school education.
(WSJ, 12/5/96, p.A16)
1968 May 25, "Unicorn" by The
Irish Rovers hit #7.
1969 Oct, The Nobel prize in
Literature was awarded to Irish writer Samuel Beckett (1906-1989).
He learned of the award while on holiday in Tunisia and avoided the
1969-1996 3,200 people have been killed in the
political struggle in Northern Ireland.
(SFC, 6/11/96, p.A14)
1970 In Northern Ireland the
Irish Republican Army (IRA) split between more Marxist officials and
soon-to-be dominant Provisionals.
1970-2000 This period in Irish history was later
covered by 2007 R.F. Foster in his “Luck & the Irish: A Brief
History of Change 1970-2000."
(Econ, 10/20/07, p.116)
1971 Samuel Beckett
(1906-1989), Irish-born playwright, authored his play "Not I."
Beckett spent most of his life in Paris and in 1969 he won the Nobel
Prize in Literature.
(SFEC, 1/17/99, BR
1972 Jan 22, Britain, Denmark,
Ireland and Norway joined the European Economic Community.
1973 Jan 1, The European
Economic Community (EEC), the forerunner to the EU, admitted
Britain, Ireland and Denmark even though they made chocolate
containing a small percentage of vegetable fat.
1973 Feb 22, Elizabeth Bowen
(b.1899), Irish-British novelist and short story writer, died. Her
books included “A Time in Rome" (1959).
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabeth_Bowen)(WSJ, 6/14/08, p.W10)
1973 Mar 28, The Irish Navy
caught Joe Cahill (1920-2004) as he tried to smuggle 5 tons of
Russian-made explosives, guns and ammunition from Libya.
(SFC, 7/26/04, p.B4)(http://tinyurl.com/5lfwh2)
1973 Shaun Herron (1912-1989),
Ireland-born author, authored “The Whore-Mother," a novel about the
Troubles in Northern Ireland.
1973 Louise O'Keeffe (9) was
sexually abused by a lay teacher at a state-backed Roman Catholic
school during lessons in his classroom. She later argued that the
Irish state failed to put in place appropriate measures to stop
"systematic abuse" at the Dunderrow National School.
1973-1974 Erskine Hamilton Childers (1905-1974)
served as the 4th president of Ireland.
1973-1989 In north Dublin, Ireland, Ray Burke, a
Fianna Fail lawmaker, was accused in 2002 of corruption and taking
some $300,000 in payments from property developers during this
(SSFC, 9/29/02, p.F6)
1974 Mar 12, Billy Fox
(b.1939), Protestant Dublin MP, was assassinated.
1974 Nov 25, Irish Republican
Army was outlawed in Britain following deaths of 21. IRA bombs in
British pubs killed 28 and wounded over 200 in the last 2 months.
(MC, 11/25/01)(WSJ, 3/12/04, p.A11)
1974 Eisaku Sato (b.1901),
premier of Japan, and Ireland’s Sean MacBride, president of the
Int’l. Peace Bureau, won the Nobel Peace Prize.
1975 Aug 29, Eamon de
Valera (92), Irish president (1937-59), died near Dublin. De Valera
was born in NYC (1882) and emigrated to Ireland as a child and
joined the Easter Rebellion of 1916 against British rule. He was
saved from execution because of his American citizenship, and was
released under a general amnesty in 1917.
(AP, 8/29/97)(ON, 9/04, p.7)
1975 Oct 12, Archbishop Oliver
Plunkett (1625-1681) became the 1st Irish-born saint in 700 years.
He was beheaded by Cromwell's troops.
1975 The film "Barry Lyndon" by
Stanley Kubrick featured the music of the Chieftains of Ireland.
(WSJ, 3/17/98, p.A16)
1975 Tony Ryan (1921-2007),
Irish-born aviation entrepreneur, set up Guinness Peat Aviation with
money from Air Lingus, bankers in London and some of his own cash.
GPA rented planes to airlines around the world. Its IPO in 1992
stumbled and General Electric Co. picked up most of the company at a
(WSJ, 10/6/07, p.A17)
1976 Jul 3, Shane Lynch, Irish
singer (Boyzone), was born in Dublin, Ireland.
1976 The rock band U2 initially
formed in Dublin when Larry Mullen Jr. posted a message on a high
school bulletin board asking for fellow musicians to form a band.
Paul Hewson, David Evans, Adam Clayton and Dick Evans responded to
the ad and it was at this stage along with Larry Mullen Jr. that the
band 'Feedback' was formed.
1976 Iceland won a cod war and
prohibited foreign vessels from shipping within 200 miles of its
(WSJ, 1/11/99, p.R49)
1977 Jan 23, Ireland set its
fishing zone at 200 miles.
1977 May 14, Capt. Robert
Nairac (29), an underground British soldier, was abducted from a
border pub by an IRA gang, taken across the border into a Republic
of Ireland forest, and shot through the head. In 2008 the Police
Service of Northern Ireland press office confirmed the arrest of
Kevin Crilly (57), an IRA veteran, on suspicion of involvement in
1977 Iris Murdoch (1919-1999),
Irish born writer and philosopher, authored "The Fire and the Sun:
Why Plato Banished the Artists." In 1994 Murdoch was diagnosed with
Alzheimer’s Disease. In 1998 her husband, John Bayley, published
"Elegy for Iris."
(WSJ, 2/17/98, p.A20)
1977 In northeast Ireland
mining of a large deposit of zinc ore began at Navan. Mining
employed about 1% of the Irish labor force.
1977-1979 Jack Lynch (d.1999 at 82) served his 2nd
term as prime minister (Taoiseach).
(SFC, 10/22/99, p.B7)
1978 Hugh Leonard (b.1926),
Irish dramatist and journalist, won the Tony Award for best play for
his comedy play: "Da" (1977).
1979 Aug 27, British war hero
Lord Louis Mountbatten was killed off the coast of Ireland in his
29-foot sail boat in Sligo, Ireland; the Irish Republican Army
claimed responsibility. Also killed were his 14-year-old grandson
Nicholas, 83-year-old Lady Brabourne, and 15-year-old John Maxwell.
Thomas McMahon (31) was the bombmaker and was jailed at Dublin’s
Mountjoy prison. He was released in 1998 as part of the Northern
Ireland peace agreement.
(AP, 8/27/97)(SFC, 8/8/98, p.A13)(HN, 8/27/98)
1979 Sep 29, John Paul II
became the first pope to visit Ireland as he arrived for a three-day
1979 Dec 11, Charles J. Haughey
(1925-2006) was elected in Ireland as Taoiseach and leader of Fianna
Fail. He led 3 administrations 1979-1981, 1982, and 1987-1992. In
2000 he agreed to pay $1.23 million in back taxes for gifts received
while in office.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Haughey)(SFC, 4/4/00, p.A12)
1979 PM Charles J. Haughey made
contraception available to married couples, with a doctor's
prescription, despite the opposition of the Catholic hierarchy.
1979 Aug 13-1979 Aug 14, A
force 9 gale off the southwest coast of Ireland left 15 yachtsmen of
the 28th Fastnet Race dead.
1979-1996 During this period Ireland’s PM Charles
J. Haughey took some 11.56 million euros in payments for favors.
(Econ, 10/20/07, p.117)
1980 Apr 18, In Lebanon three
UN peacekeepers were kidnapped. Derek Smallhorne and Thomas Barrett
of Ireland were subsequently murdered and John O’Mahony seriously
wounded. In 2014 a Mahmoud Bazzi (71), a suspect in the killings,
agreed to return to Lebanon from Detroit, where he was living
without proper documentation.
1980 Dec 18, IRA's Sean McKenna
became critically ill and ended his hunger strike.
1981 Feb 14, In Ireland a blaze
in a Dublin dance hall killed 48 people.
1981 Apr 8, The short play
"Rockaby" by Samuel Beckett (1906-1989), Irish novelist and
playwright, premiered in Buffalo, NY.
1981 Apr 10, Imprisoned IRA
hunger striker Bobby Sands was elected to the British Parliament.
1981 May 5, Irish Republican
Army hunger-striker Bobby Sands, an elected member of the Irish
Parliament, died at the Maze Prison in Northern Ireland on his 66th
day without food.
(SFC, 11/15/96, p.B2)(SFEC, 12/22/96, Z1 p.6)(AP,
1981 July, Garret Fitzgerald
(1926-2011), former Irish foreign minister (1973-1977), began
serving his first term as Ireland’s Taoiseach at the head of a
minority Fine Gael-Labour government. He served a 2nd term from
(Econ, 5/28/11, p.91)
1982 Mar 9, Charles J. Haughey
was chosen as Premier of Ireland. Haughey later admitted that he
received secret payments from businessmen, that included Ben Dunne,
during a period of national recession.
(HN, 3/9/98)(SFC, 12/10/99, p.AA4)
1982 Jul 20, Irish Republican
Army bombs exploded in two London parks, killing 11 British
soldiers, along with seven horses belonging to the Queen’s Household
Cavalry. On May 22, 2013, British police charged John Downey (61)
from County Donegal in Ireland, over one of the bombings that killed
four soldiers and 7 horses in Hyde Park.
(AP, 7/20/00)(AP, 5/22/13)
1983 Feb 8, Champion
thoroughbred Shergar was kidnapped in Ireland and never found.
Lloyds of London paid $10.6 million insurance.
1983 Jun 18, IRA's Joseph
Doherty was arrested in NYC for illegally entering the US. The
British sought his extradition on charges relating to the death of a
member of a British commando unit.
1983 Sep 7, Irish people voted
in a referendum to amend the constitution to make abortion illegal.
The 8th amendment, banning abortion, was signed into law on Oct 7,
(http://tinyurl.com/cqtafxh)(Econ, 8/23/14, p.52)
1983 Nov 24, An IRA unit
disguised as police officers seized Don Tidey, an American former
chief executive of Ireland's Superquinn grocery stores, outside his
Dublin home. They held him for more than three weeks in woods near
the Irish border and demanded the equivalent of US$7.5 million in
ransom. A joint Irish police-army search stumbled on the kidnappers'
hideaway, freeing Tidey, but the IRA kidnappers killed a police
officer and soldier as they escaped.
1983 F.S.L. Lyons, Irish
historian, died. He had taught at Dublin’s Trinity College.
(WSJ, 9/12/02, p.D8)
1984 Jun 1, President Ronald
Reagan visited Ireland.
(DT internet 6/1/97)
1985 Jul 13, Live Aid, an
international rock concert in London, Philadelphia, Moscow and
Sydney, took place to raise money for Ethiopia and Africa's starving
people. It was organized by Bob Geldof of Ireland.
(TMC, 1994, p.1985)(AP 7/13/97)(Econ, 6/4/05,
1985 Nov 15, British PM
Margaret Thatcher and the Irish Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald signed
the Anglo-Irish Agreement giving Dublin an official consultative
role in governing Northern Ireland.
1985 Nov 27, The British House
of Commons approved the Anglo-Irish accord giving Dublin a
consultative role in the governing of British-ruled Northern
1985 Nov 28, The Irish Senate
approved the Anglo-Irish accord concerning Northern Ireland.
1985 Mary Robinson resigned
from the Labor Party of Ireland after her party supported the
Anglo-Irish Agreement of this year. She opposed it on the grounds
that it was unfair to Ulster Unionists.
(SFC, 5/12/96, p.A-12)
1985 Ryanair was founded by
Cathal and Declan Ryan (after whom the company is named), Liam
Lonergan (owner of an Irish tour operator named Club Travel), and
noted Irish businessman Tony Ryan (1936-2007), founder of Guinness
Peat Aviation and father of Cathal and Declan. The small airline,
flying a short hop from Waterford to London, grew to become one of
Europe's largest carriers.
1986 May, A Vermeer painting,
"Lady Writing a Letter with her Maid," was among 18 paintings worth
$40 million stolen from Russborough House in Blessington, Ireland.
Some of the paintings are later recovered.
1986 Jun 27, An Irish
referendum upheld a ban on divorce.
1986 Billy McCommiskey of
Baltimore, Maryland, won the all-Ireland, senior category,
championship of the button accordion. He soon teamed with Liz
Carroll, the 1991 All-Ireland senior fiddle champion and
singer-guitarist Daithi Sproule to produce the self-titled album
“Trian" in 1992 and “Trian II" in 1995. In 1985 McCommiskey and his
Baltimore band, Irish Tradition, recorded the album “The Times We’ve
(WSJ, 3/13/07, p.D5)
1987 Feb 17, Ireland held
elections four weeks after the dissolution of the Dail on 20
January. The newly-elected 166 members of the 25th Dáil assembled at
Leinster House on 10 March when a new Taoiseach and government were
1987 Mar 10, Garret Fitzgerald
(b.1926), head of Ireland’s Fine Gael/Labor coalition government
stepped down from office. Charles Haughey (1925-2006), head of
Fianna Fail, was elected Taoiseach of Ireland for a 3rd term and
held the position until 1992. Under his tenure ministers took cash
from property and construction interests.
(Econ, 10/16/04, Survey
1987 In Ireland the Social
Partnership Agreement was initiated. The 1st agreement, a Program
for National Recovery, included a renewable 3-year pact between
government, employers and unions that tied wage increases to the
rate of growth.
1987 Unemployment reached 17%
with a national deficit of $1.35 billion and out-of-control
(SFC, 12/10/99, p.AA4)
1988 Jan 15, Sean MacBride
(b.1904), Ireland, commander of Irish Republican Army, died. He was
a founding member of Amnesty Int’l. and was awarded the Nobel peace
Prize in 1974. He wrote the Constitution of the Organization for
African Unity and the first Constitution of Ghana, the first UK
African Colony to achieve Independence.
1988 Mar 6, 3 IRA suspects were
shot dead in Gibraltar by SAS officers.
1988 Aug 20, Eight British
soldiers were killed by an Irish Republican Army land mine that
destroyed a military bus near Omagh, County Tyrone, in Northern
1988 Pernod Ricard SA acquired
the Irish whiskies Jameson, Paddy and Bushmills.
(WSJ, 9/7/05, p.B2)
1988 Tony Ryan, the founder of
Guinness Peat Aviation, brought on Michael O’Leary to do whatever
was necessary to make Ryanair profitable. In 2007 Alan Ruddock
authored “Michael O’Leary: A Life in Full Flight."
(Econ, 8/25/07, p.76)
1989 The film "My Left Foot"
with Daniel Day-Lewis a biography of disabled Irish writer Christy
(SFEC, 3/15/98, DB p.56)
1990 Apr 18, A Franco-German
proposal was made at the Dublin summit for the political union of
the 12 European Community member countries.
1990 Jun 15, The Dublin regime
was established by the Dublin Convention and signed in Dublin,
Ireland. It first came into force on 1 September 1997. The EU’s
Dublin Rule said that people applying for asylum in an EU country
other than the one they first entered should be returned to that
1990 Jul 1, The first phase of
the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) comes into force. Four Member
States (Spain, Portugal, Greece and Ireland) are granted an
exceptional regime given their insufficient progress towards
1990 Nov 7, Mary Robinson was
elected as 1st female president of Ireland for a 7 year term. She
was later selected as the UN commissioner for human rights.
1992 Jan 30, Irish PM Charles
Haughey (1926-2006) announced his resignation. The 8-year rule by PM
Haughey ended. Later allegations arose that he had accepted cash
from Dunnes Stores while in office. There were also allegations that
Dunnes had given members of Parliament more than $5 million over 10
years. New evidence also showed that he had authorized the 1982
(SFC, 4/23/97, p.A5)(AP, 1/30/02)(AP, 6/13/06)
1992 Feb 26, The Supreme Court
of Ireland cleared the way for a 14-year-old girl to leave the
country for an abortion.
1992 Apr 11, The IRA bombed the
London financial district killing 3.
1992 Jun 18, Ireland’s voters
overwhelmingly approving a referendum on the Maastricht Treaty for a
1992 Oct 3, Sinead O'Connor,
Irish rock singer, ripped up a picture of Pope John Paul II on
Saturday Night Live.
1992 Ireland’s Supreme Court
ruling found abortion should be legalized for situations when the
woman's life is at risk from continuing the pregnancy. However five
following governments since have refused to pass a law resolving the
confusion. In 2010 the European Court of Human Rights called on
Ireland to clarify its abortion law.
(AP, 11/14/12)(Econ, 2/2/13, p.43)
1993 Mar 28, About 10,000
people marched in Dublin, Ireland, to protest an IRA bombing that
killed two young boys.
1993 The film "In The Name of
the Father and Junior" with Daniel Day-Lewis was directed by Jim
Sheridan. It was about a man accused of an IRA bomb attack that he
(SFEC, 3/1/98, Par p.5)(SFEC, 3/15/98, DB p.56)
1993 Ireland decriminalized
(Econ, 6/27/15, p.17)
1994 Mar 8, The IRA launch the
1st of 3 mortar attacks on London's Heathrow Airport.
1994 Apr 30, The Eurovision
Song Contest was held in Dublin’s Point Theater. The first
performance of Riverdance was held there which featured a modern
form of Irish stepdancing.
(WSJ, 3/12/96, p. A-16)
1994 Sep 6, Irish Prime
Minister Albert Reynolds and Gerry Adams, head of the IRA's
political ally, Sinn Fein, made a joint commitment to peace after
their first face-to-face meeting.
1994 Nov 17, Irish Prime
Minister Albert Reynolds resigned.
(SFC, 6/18/96, p.A8)
1994 Dec, John Bruton’s 3-party
coalition began governing after a Fiana Fail-Labor coalition
(SFC, 6/9/97, p.A10)
1994 In Ireland the case
against Rev. Brendan Smyth (d.1997 at 70) led to the collapse of the
government of Prime Minister Albert Reynolds. The attorney general
had delayed processing requests from British authorities for the
extradition of Smyth, who was charged for 74 instances of sexual
abuse of 20 young people over 36 years. He was sentenced in 1997 to
12 years in Curragh Prison.
(SFC, 7/26/97, p.A14)(SFEC, 8/24/97, p.A24)
1994 Kevin Gardiner of
Barclay’s Wealth coined the phrase “Celtic Tiger" to describe the
dramatic rise of Ireland’s economy.
(Econ, 2/19/11, p.28)
1995 May 10, Britain lifted a
23-year ban on ministerial talks with Sinn Fein.
1995 Nov 24, Voters in Ireland
narrowly ended a 70-year ban on divorce and approved a
constitutional amendment legalizing divorce and remarriage by
(SFC, 1/18/96, p.A8)(AP, 11/24/00)
1995 Thomas Cahill,
Irish-American writer, authored “How the Irish Saved Civilization."
(Econ, 12/18/10, p.149)
1995 The Chieftains of Ireland
released their album "The Long Black Veil."
(WSJ, 3/17/98, p.A16)
1995 The film "Broken Harvest"
was a rural family drama set during the Irish civil war.
(SFEC, 3/15/98, DB p.57)
1995 Gerry Adams was the leader
of the Irish Republican Army's political wing.
(WSJ, 11/15/95, p.A-1)
1995 Prime Minister Bruton did
not want to be rushed into talks on the stalled peace process
in Northern Ireland.
(WSJ, 11/22/95, p.A-1)
1996 Jun 7, IRA men killed one
police officer and wounded another in a robbery attempt in Adare,
western Ireland. Detective sergeant Jerry McCabe was killed with 15
bullets from a Kalashnikov. In 1999 Pearse McCauley and Kevin Walsh
were sentenced to 14 years in prison , Jeremiah Sheehy to 12 years,
and Michael O’Neill to 11 years. O’Neill was released in 2007.
(SFC, 6/18/96, p.A8)(SFC, 2/6/99, p.A11)(AP,
1996 Jun 9, The latest
unemployment rate was 14.5%.
(SFC, 6/9/96, Parade, p.9)
1996 Jun 16, IRA guerrillas
were caught making dozens of new bombs when police raided an arms
factory west of Dublin. Prime Minister John Burton made the
announcement ten days later.
(SFC, 6/26/96, p.A9)
1996 Jun 26, In Dublin,
Ireland, reporter Veronica Guerin, who covered the city’s crime
world, was shot and killed at a traffic light ambush by 2 men on
motorcycle. In Nov, 1998, Paul "Hippo" Ward (34) was convicted for
the murder and sentenced to life in prison. John Gilligan and Brian
Meehan also faced murder charges. Meehan (34), king of the Dublin
cannabis dealers, was convicted and sentenced to life in prison in
1999. Meehan received an additional 47 years for drug dealing and
weapons possession. In 2001 Gilligan was acquitted of the murder
charges but was sentenced to 28 years in prison on drug charges.
(USAT, 6/27/96, p.10A)(SFC, 11/28/98, p.A12)(SFC,
7/30/99, p.D3)(SFC, 3/16/01, p.A16)
1996 Dec 3, of Sophie Toscan du
Plantier, the wife of high-profile French filmmaker Daniel Toscan du
Plantier (d.2003), was found beaten to death near the remote house
in Schull. On Mar 1, 2012, Ian Bailey, a British journalist and the
chief suspect in the murder, won his appeal against extradition to
1997 Jan 17, A court granted
the first divorce in modern Irish history.
(SFC, 1/18/96, p.A8)
1997 Feb 27, Divorce became
legal in Ireland. [see Jan 17]
1997 May 26, It was reported
that Galway had become Europe’s fastest growing city with a rate of
(SFC, 5/26/97, p.A8)
1997 Jun 8, Prime Minister John
Bruton was defeated in elections. Opposition leader Bertie Ahern of
Fiana Fail, a populist Dubliner, was expected to be asked to form a
new government. Fiana Fail was Ireland’s largest and traditionally
most anti-British party.
(SFC, 6/9/97, p.A10)(SFC, 4/11/98, p.A8)
1997 Jun 12, Mary Robinson,
Pres. of Ireland, was named the top human rights official for the
(SFC, 6/12/97, p.A16)
1997 Jun 26, Bertie Ahern
became the prime minister and appointed Mary Harney, leader of the
right-wing Progressive Democrats, as his assistant.
(SFC, 6/27/97, p.A3)
1997 Jul 25, Rev. Brendan Smyth
(71) was sentenced to 12 years in prison for 74 instances of sexual
abuse of 20 young people over 36 years.
(SFC, 7/26/97, p.A14)
1997 Oct 20, It was reported
that a British firm has proposed a rail tunnel to link Britain and
Ireland. The 56-mile tunnel was estimated to cost $22.6 billion.
1997 Oct 30, Mary McAleese, a
lawyer and academic from Belfast, was elected as president to
succeed Mary Robinson.
1997 Dec 25, A gale hit Britain
and Ireland with 100 mph winds and 4 people were killed. A French
fishing vessel was feared to have sunk off Wales.
(WSJ, 12/26/97, p.A1)
1997 Frank McCourt, a retired
New York schoolteacher, won the Pulitzer Prize for his memoir
"Angela’s Ashes." It was based on his childhood in Limerick from age
(SFEC, 3/15/98, p.T11)(WSJ, 4/24/98, p.W14)
1997 Dorothy Walker authored
"Modern Art in Ireland."
(SFEC, 2/7/99, DB p.29)
1997 The Vatican’s top diplomat
in Ireland told bishops that their policy of mandatory reporting
suspected of sex abuse cases to police "gives rise to serious
reservations of both a moral and canonical nature." In 2011 the
Vatican insisted the letter had been "deeply misunderstood."
1998 Apr 10, The Good Friday
Agreement was announced 17 hours after the deadline as negotiators
reached a landmark settlement to end 30 years of bitter rivalries
and bloody attacks. Gerry Adams signed for the IRA. It was to face
referendums in the Irish Republic and Northern Ireland on May 22. If
approved there would be June elections to create a local governing
assembly for Northern Ireland.
(SFC, 4/11/98, p.A1)(AP, 4/10/99)(SSFC, 9/14/03,
1998 Apr 22, In Ireland
legislation was passed for a May 22 referendum on the Northern
Ireland peace agreement. Northern Ireland voters would also vote on
the referendum. A constitutional amendment would result in which
Ireland would renounce its claim on the territory of Northern
(SFC, 4/23/98, p.A12)
1998 May 22, A vote on the referendum on
the Northern Ireland peace agreement was held in Northern Ireland
and the Republic of Ireland. Voters showed 71% support in Northern
Ireland and 94% support in the Republic of Ireland.
(SFC, 4/23/98, p.A12)(SFC, 5/23/98, p.A1)(SFEC,
1998 May 23, Official returns
showed two convincing "yes" votes for the Northern Ireland peace
accord: a surprisingly strong 71.1 percent in British-linked
Northern Ireland, and 94.4 percent in the Republic of Ireland.
1998 Jul 10, Police in England
and Ireland arrested 9 people and thwarted a plot to bomb central
London. The arrested were members of the 32 County Sovereignty
Committee, a hard-line dissident Catholic group opposed to the peace
settlement that was led by Bernadette Sands. Her husband, Michael
McKevitt, was the reputed leader of the Real IRA.
(SFC, 7/11/98, p.A1)(SFC, 8/18/98, p.A8)(SFC,
1998 Aug 19, The Irish
government announced plans to sharply tighten its anti-terrorist
(SFC, 8/20/98, p.A14)
1998 Oct 17, The Nobel Peace
Prize was awarded to John Hume, head of the Irish Catholic Social
Democratic and Labor Party, and to David Trimble, leader of the
Protestant Ulster Unionist Party.
(SFEC, 10/18/98, p.D1)
1998 Oct 29, The deadline for
the creation of a new North-South Ministerial Council faced delay
due to a dispute over disarmament. An estimated 100 ton arsenal
including several tons of Semtex was still hidden on both sides of
(SFC, 10/26/98, p.A8)
1998 The Irish black comedy
film "I Went Down" starred Peter McDonald and Brendan Gleeson. It
was directed by Paddy Breathnach.
(SFC, 7/1/98, p.E3)
1998 The Irish film "Walking
Ned Devine" was about two men on a quest to collect lottery
(SFEC, 9/20/98, DB p.50)
1998 Ireland’s Supreme Court
emphasized a mother's right to privacy, and said mothers should be
consulted regarding adopted children. This prevented adopted persons
from trying to contact a birth parent who didn't want to be
approached. Catholic Ireland's system of compelling unwed mothers to
give up their babies to secret adoptions ended in the 1980s.
1999 Jan 1, The Maastricht
Treaty specified that a monetary union will be established by this
date, and laid down several criteria that EU nations must fulfill in
order to join. Some of the criteria included: maximum budget
deficits of 3% of GDP, a cap on government debt of 60% of GDP. The
European economic and monetary union (EMU) was scheduled to start
with a new "Euro" currency. Austria, Belgium, Finland, France,
Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and
Spain made the transition. Public use was set for Jan 1, 2002.
(WSJ, 9/25/95, p.A-12)(WSJ, 12/5/95, p.A-14)(SFC,
11/16/96, p.A1)(SFC, 1/1/99, p.A8)
1999 Feb 8, Iris Murdoch
(b.1919), Dublin-born novelist, died. Her husband, John Bayley,
published "Iris: A Memoir of Iris Murdoch" in 1998. It was published
in the US as "Elegy for Iris."
1999 Feb 29, In Ireland and
Northern Ireland police arrested 7 men associated with the 1998
Omagh car bombing that killed 29 people.
(SFC, 2/22/99, p.A14)
1999 Oct 20, Jack Lynch, former
prime minister, died at age 82.
(SFC, 10/22/99, p.B7)
1999 Dec 1, Ireland joined
NATO's Partnership for Peace program.
(SFC, 12/2/99, p.D2)
1999 Dec 13, Ireland and
Northern Ireland began cross-border cooperation with a meeting in
Armagh. Twice yearly summits called the North-South Ministerial
Summit represented the first political link since partition in 1920.
(SFC, 12/14/99, p.A12)
1999 Thomas Keneally authored
"The Great Shame and Triumph of the Irish in the English-Speaking
World." It was a 700-page survey of Irish writers, revolutionists
and common folks.
(SFEC, 10/24/99, Par p.9)
1999 Legislation established
that anyone born in Ireland, north or south, could claim Irish
(Econ, 6/5/04, p.49)
1999 In Ireland a corruption
tribunal identified over $10 million in lavish gifts that former PM
Haughey had received from businessmen and the way his bank had
cancelled a large chunk of his overdraft.
(Econ, 6/24/06, p.101)
2000 Jan 2, Patrick O'Brian,
(born in England as Richard Patrick Russ), celebrated novelist, died
at age 85 in Ireland while writing his 21st novel set during the
Napoleonic wars. His 1st Aubrey and Maturin novel was "Master and
Commander," begun in 1969 was published in 1970. His first novel was
"The Golden Ocean" written in 1956.
(SFC, 1/8/00, p.A19)(WSJ, 11/7/03, p.W15)
2000 Jul 21, Former Prime
Minister Charles Haughey took the witness stand in a corruption
probe. He was accused of soliciting $12 million in bribes while in
office for 3 terms in the 1980s and 1990s.
(SFC, 7/21/00, p.B6)(SFC, 7/22/00, p.A11)
2000 Sep 15, Truckers across
Europe blocked highways to protest high fuel costs. Protests hit
Spain, Germany, Ireland, Poland and the Czech Republic.
(SFC, 9/16/00, p.A10)
2000 Dec 12, Pres. Clinton
spoke at the northern Irish border town of Dundalk and urged the
protection of the 1998 Good Friday peace agreement.
(SFC, 12/13/00, p.B2)
2001 Mar 22, A case of
foot-and-mouth disease was confirmed in County Louth, on the border
with Northern Ireland. 40,000 cattle were destroyed.
(SFC, 3/23/01, p.D5)(WSJ, 3/23/01, p.A1)
2001 Mar 29, Michael McKevitt
(51) was arrested in Dundalk for his membership and leadership role
in the Real IRA.
(SFC, 3/31/01, p.A14)
2001 Jun 8, Irish voters
rejected the EU’s Nice treaty to pave the way for 12 new members.
The Irish reportedly feared immigrants in search of jobs and
participation in an EU Rapid Reaction Force.
(SFC, 6/9/01, p.A9)(Econ, 3/17/07, SR p.10)
2001 Dec 8, The bodies of 8
illegal immigrants, including 3 children, were found in a shipping
container in Wexford. 5 people were still alive.
(SSFC, 12/9/01, p.A16)
2002 Jan 30, In Ireland the
Roman Catholic Church agreed to pay $110 million in cash and
property to Irish children sexually abused by priests, nuns and
other church officials in past decades. There were as many as 7,000
potential claimants for payouts ranging from $43k to 260k.
(SFC, 1/31/02, p.A9)(SFC, 2/1/02, p.A16)
2002 Mar 7, Irish voters
narrowly rejected an abortion proposal that would have tightened a
near total ban.
(SFC, 3/8/02, p.A14)
2002 Mar 22, Thomas Flanagan
(d.2002 at 78), Irish-American author, died in Berkeley, Ca. His
novels included a trilogy on Ireland: "The Year of the French"
(1979), "The Tenants of Time" (1988), and "The End of the Hunt"
(1994). He also authored: "The Irish Novelists: 1800-1850."
(SFC, 3/30/02, p.A19)
2002 May 17, In Ireland
national elections the Fianna Fail Party of PM Bertie Ahern won 80
of the 166 seats in Parliament. Another coalition with the
conservative Progressive Democrats was expected. IRA-allied Sinn
Fein won 5 seats.
(WSJ, 5/16/02, p.A1)(SSFC, 5/19/02, p.A18)(SFC,
5/20/02, p.A7)(WSJ, 5/20/02, p.A1)
2002 Jun 11, Sir Paul McCartney
and his new wife, former model Heather Mills, were married in a
lavish Irish wedding in Glaslough.
2002 Jul 16, The Irish
Republican Army issued an unprecedented apology for hundreds of
civilian deaths over 30 years.
2002 Oct 19, Irish residents
endorsed the European Union's plans to expand eastward. 63 percent
of voters in the referendum approved the expansion proposal, which
will admit up to 12 new members and bring the EU's membership to
almost 500 million.
2002 Oct 25, Richard Harris
(72), Irish film actor, died in London. His work included
appearances in over 80 films.
(SFC, 10/26/02, p.A2)(AP, 10/25/07)
2002 Oct 30, Senior Sinn
Fein-IRA figure Martin McGuinness declared his war has ended in a
documentary broadcast by the British Broadcasting Corp.
2002 R.F. Foster authored "The
(WSJ, 9/12/02, p.D8)
2003 Nov 17, Donald Jordan
(58), historian, died in Berkeley, Ca. His books included "Land and
Popular Politics in Ireland: A Study of 19th Century Irish Land
(SFC, 11/29/03, p.A20)
2003 Dec 6, In the beach resort
of Sanya, China, Miss Ireland, 19-year-old Rosanna Davison, won the
Miss World competition. Second place went to Miss Canada, Nazanin
Afshin-Jam, while the host country's Miss China, Guan Qi, took
2003 Richard English authored
"Armed Struggle: The History of the IRA."
(SSFC, 9/14/03, p.M3)
2003 PayPal, an online payments
company acquired by eBay, set up an office in Ireland with 25
people. In 2004 eBay announced plans to move customer operations to
Ireland and by 2014 their combined operations employed some 2,000
(SSFC, 3/9/14, p.9)
2004 Feb 18, Ireland's
government announced plans to ban smoking in all enclosed workplaces
as of March 29.
(SFC, 2/19/04, p.A3)
2004 Mar 29, Ireland outlawed
smoking in workplaces, imposing the strictest anti-tobacco measure
ever adopted by any country on earth.
2004 Jun 11, Irish voters have
overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment to tighten their
liberal citizenship laws.
2004 Jun 25, Pres. Bush stopped
in Ireland to meet with EU leaders, while on his way to Turkey for a
summit with NATO leaders. Thousands of protesters demonstrated
against his actions in Iraq.
(SFC, 6/26/04, p.A3)
2005 Jan 1, Ireland's 2nd city
of Cork became the European capital of culture for 2005, offering up
a program of theatre, music, art, literature as well as sporting and
2005 Jan 1, Ireland was
forecast for 4.9% annual GDP growth with a population at 4.1 million
and GDP per head at $48,250.
(Econ, 1/8/05, p.88)
2005 Jan 25, Irish Prime
Minister Bertie Ahern prepared to meet with Sinn Fein leaders, in
his first talks with the IRA-linked party since the Dec 20 bank
2005 Feb 20, The Irish
government identified 3 top Sinn Fein figures, including Gerry
Adams, as members of the IRA command.
(SFC, 2/21/05, p.A3)
2005 Mar 28, Ireland enacted a
law outlawing English on road signs and official maps on much of the
nation’s western coast, where many people speak Gaelic.
(SFC, 3/29/05, p.A2)
2005 May 23, In Ireland a bus
full of high school students collided with two cars northwest of
Dublin on and tipped over into a ditch, killing five teenage girls
and injuring 50 people.
2005 May 26, Police killed 2
gunmen in a Dublin post office, the first fatal shootings by
Ireland's largely unarmed force in five years.
2005 Jun 7, Irishman Bob Geldof
urged people to sail to France "in their thousands" and bring
activists back to Britain to press world leaders into doing more to
end poverty in Africa at their July summit in Scotland.
2005 Aug 5, It was reported
that 3 men linked to the Irish Republican Army, who were convicted
of training rebels in Colombia, have returned surreptitiously to
Ireland, eight months after going on the run. Colombia demanded
2005 Sep 8, Wyeth Co.
officially opened a $2 billion Irish production facility, a move
that will make the US company the biggest pharmaceutical employer in
2005 Sep 23, Sinn Fein and
Irish government leaders said the outlawed Irish Republican Army is
ready to dispose of its stockpiled arms in a long-sought peace move,
possibly within the next week, after their first meeting in eight
2005 Oct 11, Irish author John
Banville beat higher profile favorites to become the surprise winner
of Britain's prestigious Booker Prize for fiction. His 14th novel
"The Sea" was described by the judges as "a masterly study of grief,
memory and love recollected".
(AP, 10/11/05)(Econ, 10/15/05, p.91)
2005 Nov 13, In Dublin,
Ireland, 2 men wearing bulletproof vests were shot to death at
point-blank range in what police said was the latest bloodshed in a
five-year turf war between drug-dealing gangs. The attack raised to
18 the number of gun killings within Ireland's criminal underworld
2005 Dec 9, In Ireland more
than 10,000 labor union members protested in Dublin and other cities
over shipping company Irish Ferries' plan to replace its workers
with Latvians making $4.25 an hour, half the local minimum wage. It
was the country's most bitter industrial showdown in decades.
(AP, 12/09/05)(WSJ, 12/10/05, p.A1)
2005 Dec 14, Irish Ferries and
Ireland’s largest labor union reached a deal over plans to replace
543 Irish workers with lower paid EU employees. Irish Ferries will
reflag ships to avoid the jurisdiction of Irish employment law.
(WSJ, 12/15/05, p.A16)
2005 In Ireland property
developers Raymond and Danny Grehan bought a Dublin site for a
record 82 million euros per acre. They were later ordered by an
Irish court to pay the state-run National Asset Management Agency
(NAMA) 312 million and 308 million euros respectively. Raymond
Grehan declared bankruptcy in London in Dec, 2011. Brother Danny
followed on Jan 6, 2012.
2006 Jan 24, Biotechnology
company Amgen Inc. said it will build a manufacturing plant in
Ireland to supply its growing European customer base.
2006 Feb 1, A joint British and
Irish report said the Irish Republican Army has halted violence but
is still gathering intelligence on enemies and remains deeply
involved in organized crime.
2006 Feb 25, Riots broke out in
Dublin, Ireland, as republican demonstrators mounted a counter-march
to a scheduled loyalist rally. Damages were estimated at $12
2006 Mar 7, The Irish Supreme
Court ruled that Brendan "Bik" McFarlane, a legendary Irish
Republican Army figure who in 1983 oversaw the biggest prison
breakout in British history, should stand trial for kidnapping.
2006 Mar 9, More than 300
police backed by British and Irish troops mounted dawn raids on the
home turf of Thomas "Slab" Murphy, reputedly the Irish Republican
Army's veteran chief of staff and its most lucrative smuggler.
2006 Mar 30, John McGahern
(71), Irish writer, died in Dublin. His stark depiction of love and
despair in repressive rural Ireland made him one of his country's
most acclaimed fiction writers.
2006 Apr 3, PM Bertie Ahern
pledged that Ireland will legalize civil partnerships for gay
couples, as he opened new offices for the country's main gay rights
2006 Apr 4, Denis Donaldson
(55), former British agent inside Sinn Fein, was killed by shotgun
blasts in northwest Ireland.
2006 May 16, Irish rock star
Bono began a new African tour in Lesotho where he planned to unveil
a new initiative to fight AIDS in its ailing textile industry.
2006 May 20, Irish police
removed Afghan hunger-strikers from a Dublin cathedral, where some
40 protesters gathered on May 15 demanding asylum and warning they
would kill themselves if officers came near.
2006 May 31, A Dublin jury
convicted Rev. Daniel Doherty, a Roman Catholic priest, of raping a
13-year-old girl in 1985.
2006 Jun 2, Ireland passed an
emergency bill on under-age sex, and the Supreme Court ordered a man
at the center of the controversy to be reimprisoned for having sex
with a 12-year-old girl.
2006 Jun 13, Charles Haughey
(80), former Irish prime minister, died following a long battle with
cancer. He served 4 terms as Ireland's PM (1979-1982 and 1987-1992)
in a career overshadowed by ethical questions. He preached
austerity, yet practiced prodigality.
(AP, 6/13/06)(Econ, 6/24/06, p.101)
2006 Jun 27, The Cabinet of PM
Bertie Ahern agreed to use the Republic of Ireland's Gaelic name,
Eire (pronounced AIR-uh), during EU summits.
2006 Jul 1, The cost of an
average house in Ireland was reported to be $380,000 (€300k).
(Econ, 7/1/06, p.48)
2006 Jul 19, A government
report said Ireland's population has surged this year to a modern
high of more than 4.2 million people largely because of immigrants
from the newest EU nations.
2006 Jul 25, Israeli troops
sealed off the town of Bint Jbail, a Hezbollah stronghold in fierce
fighting in south Lebanon. Warplanes struck Nabatiyeh and destroyed
a house killing seven people, four from the same family. Guerrillas
fired rockets at northern Israel, killing a girl. An Israeli
airstrike killed 4 UN observers at a UNIFIL post in southern
Lebanon. The observers were from Austria, Canada, China and Finland.
Irish observers had warned that airstrikes were too close. UNIFIL
was created in 1978 after Israel's first major invasion of southern
Lebanon and has been there ever since.
(AP, 7/25/06)(Reuters, 7/25/06)(WSJ, 7/27/06,
2006 Aug 18, Steorn, an Irish
company, said it has developed technology that it claims produces
free energy. The company said its discovery is based on the
interaction of magnetic fields and allows the production of clean,
free and constant energy.
2006 Aug 28, In Ireland the
government and directors of the state-owned airline announced that
Aer Lingus Group PLC expects to raise more than $500 million by
selling stock for the first time in a public offering next month.
2006 Sep 29, Ireland’s PM
Bertie Ahern faced mounting pressure to explain why he received
money from Irish businessmen in England, a scandal threatening to
torpedo his leadership after nine years in power.
2006 Dec 6, Egypt’s Pres. Hosni
Mubarak arrived in Dublin at the start of a five-day European tour
that will also include France and Germany. He said renewing the
Middle East peace process is top of his agenda.
2006 Dec 19, An official report
into Ireland's biggest political scandal said former PM Charles
Haughey received more than $15 million in secret payments and lied
about his knowledge of the funds.
2007 Jan 23, Bertie Ahern,
taoiseach of Ireland, launched a $238 billion national-development
plan for the economy over the next 7 years.
(Econ, 2/3/07, p.54)
2007 Mar 17, Lithuanian
musicians, drum-beating Punjabis and West African dancers used
Dublin's St. Patrick's Day parade to celebrate their place in a
booming Ireland that has become a land of immigrants.
2007 Apr 4, In Northern Ireland
protestant leader Ian Paisley shook hands with Irish PM Bertie Ahern
in public for the first time, marking another small step on the path
2007 Apr 22, The annual Goldman
Environmental Prizes were announced on Earth Day. The winners
included Julio Cusurichi of Peru for his work to fight illegal
logging; Willie Corduff of Ireland for his work to halt an energy
project that disregarded local and environmental concerns; Sophia
Rabliauskas of Canada for her work to help protect the boreal forest
in Manitoba; Orri Vigfussen of Iceland for his work on the North
Atlantic Salmon Fund; Ts. Munkhbayar for his work against
unregulated mining in Mongolia; and Hammerskjoeld Simwinga for his
work in organizing microloan programs in Zambia.
(SSFC, 4/22/07, p.E1)
2007 May 15, PM Bertie Ahern
became the first Irish leader to address the joint houses of the
2007 May 24, In Ireland voters
began casting their ballots in an election that analysts say is
likely to return PM Bertie Ahern to power, but with new, left-wing
partners in government. An exit poll gave his Fianna Fail party a
surprisingly strong lead in parliamentary elections.
(AP, 5/24/07)(AP, 5/25/07)
2007 Jun 3, Pope Benedict XVI
named four new saints from France, Malta, the Netherlands and Poland
at a ceremony in St. Peter's Square. Among those honored was Sister
Marie Eugenie de Jesus Milleret, a French nun who in 1839 founded
the Religious of the Assumption to educate young girls; the Rev.
George Preca of Malta, who founded the Society of Christian Doctrine
in 1932 as a group of lay people who teach the faith to others; the
Rev. Szymon z Lipnicy of Poland, a Franciscan monk who comforted
Poles afflicted by the plague that broke out in Krakow from 1482-83
and died of it himself; and the Rev. Charles of St. Andrew (Dublin),
who was born Karel Van Sint Andries Houben in the Netherlands in
2007 Jun 13, Ireland’s
environmentalist Green Party, perennial outsiders in Irish politics,
voted to join the next government and extend PM Bertie Ahern's
10-year run in power.
2007 Aug 1, Tommy Maken (74),
Irish-American folk musician who performed for years with the Clancy
Brothers, died in Dover, NH.
(SFC, 8/4/07, p.B5)
2007 Sep 3, Ireland’s
government said almost all the children who could not find
elementary school places in a Dublin suburb this year were black.
2007 Oct 3, Tony Ryan (b.1936),
Irish-born aviation entrepreneur and co-founder of Ryanair (1985),
2007 Oct 16, Anne Enright,
Irish author, won the Man Booker prize for her novel “The
(SFC, 10/17/07, p.A2)
2007 Oct 25,
Irish PM Bertie Ahern gave himself a hefty pay increase,
putting his salary higher than both President Bush and British Prime
Minister Gordon Brown.
2007 Nov 29, The European
Parliament voted to allow Britain and Ireland to keep some of their
old imperial measurements so pubs can still serve pints and road
signs can show miles instead of kilometers.
2007 Dec 13, Ireland's
government announced it will organize new nonreligious primary
schools in the capital, a move that reflects growing immigration and
declining church power in this traditionally Roman Catholic nation.
2007 Dec 26, Joe Dolan (68),
one of Ireland's first pop music stars, died from a brain
hemorrhage. He had entertained audiences for decades with
Vegas-style showmanship. His last Irish No. 1 came in 1997, when he
re-recorded "Good-Looking Woman" with a popular fictional TV
comedian, a puppet named Dustin the Turkey.
2007 James Smith, an English
professor at Boston College, authored "Ireland's Magdalene Laundries
and the Nation's Culture of Containment." The so-called Magdalene
Laundries, a network of 10 workhouses, operated in independent
Ireland from the 1920s to the mid-1990s. The Irish Human Rights
Commission later said that Ireland's civil authorities for decades
dumped women, often teenagers being punished for petty crimes or
becoming pregnant out of wedlock, into the so-called Magdalene
2008 Jan 13, Irish PM Bertie
Ahern arrived in Cape Town as part of a five-day visit to South
Africa and Tanzania.
2008 Jan 22, In Lithuania
Michael Campbell (35), a prominent IRA dissident, was arrested along
with a female companion in a sting operation while allegedly trying
to purchase weapons and explosives.
2008 Apr 2, Irish PM Bertie
Ahern, one of Europe's longest serving leaders, announced that he
will resign next month amid growing pressure over alleged financial
2008 Apr 14, German Chancellor
Angela Merkel arrived in Dublin to discuss a European Union reform
treaty that still bemuses most Irish voters ahead of a June
referendum that will determine the pact's fate.
2008 May 7, In Ireland Finance
Minister Brian Cowen was elected new prime minister, and he pledged
to keep the country on its pro-European course through choppy
2008 May 19, In Ireland UN
chief Ban Ki-Moon called for a "visionary" global deal to ban
cluster bombs, as delegates from over 100 countries opened a
conference aimed at outlawing the lethal weapons.
2008 May 21, Brian Keenan (66),
a commanding figure during the Irish Republican Army's long march
from war to peace, died of cancer.
2008 May 28, In Ireland
diplomats for over 100 nations agreed on a treaty to ban current
types of cluster bombs. The talks did not involve the biggest makers
and users, which included the US, Russia, China, Israel, India and
Pakistan. Nations were expected to sign the document in December in
(SFC, 5/29/08, p.A3)
2008 May 30, Diplomats from 111
nations, meeting in Ireland, formally adopted a landmark treaty
banning cluster bombs after futile calls for participation by the
weapons' biggest makers and users, particularly the United States.
Participants planned to sign the treaty in the Oslo, Norway, in
December. It would go into effect in mid-2009.
2008 Jun 13, Substantial
election returns showed that Ireland's voters have rejected the EU
reform treaty, a blueprint for modernizing the 27-nation bloc that
cannot become law without Irish approval. A majority of voters
appeared determined to register their opposition to the growth of a
continental government that would erode Ireland's sense of
2008 Sep 30, In Ireland Brian
Cowen, the Fianna Fail prime minister, decided to guarantee all bank
deposits in Ireland. By late 2010 the bill for this reached almost a
third of GDP.
(Econ, 11/13/10, p.103)
2008 Oct 5, Germany joined
Ireland and Greece in guaranteeing all private bank accounts,
putting Europe's biggest economy at odds with calls for a unified
European response to the global financial meltdown.
2008 Nov 25, It was reported
that Ireland plans to impose tough new penalties on beggars for the
first time since the Potato Famine 160 years ago.
2008 Dec 6, The Irish
government ordered the recall of all pig meat products made in the
Republic of Ireland after dioxins were discovered in slaughtered
pigs thought to have eaten contaminated feed.
2008 Dec 9, Ireland's
farm minister said Irish cattle have tested positive for chemicals
which have triggered a cancer scare previously confined to pork.
2008 Dec 12, European Union
leaders agreed to give concessions to Ireland so it will hold a new
referendum on the EU's stalled Lisbon reform treaty, which aims to
make the 27-nation bloc a stronger player on the world stage.
2008 Dec 18, Conor Cruise
O’Brien (89), Irish diplomat and man of letters, died. His books
included “To Katanga and Back" (1962) and “Religion and Politics"
(SSFC, 12/21/08, p.B6)
2008 Dec 23, The director of an
Irish security company was forced to steal euro1.2 million ($1.7
million) from his own company and deliver it to an armed gang that
had kidnapped his wife and daughter.
2008 Jay P. Dolan authored “The
Irish Americans: A History."
(WSJ, 10/27/08, p.A15)
2008 R.F. Foster authored “Luck
and the Irish: A Brief History of Change from 1970."
(WSJ, 2/23/08, p.W8)
2008-2012 In Ireland as many as 560 suicides
during this period were later linked to the country’s economic
(SSFC, 3/9/14, p.A4)
2009 Jan 8, Dell Inc. announced
that it is moving its Irish manufacturing operations to Poland by
2010, as part of a cost cutting measure that will result in the loss
of some 1,900 Irish jobs.
(WSJ, 1/9/09, p.B4)
2009 Jan 15, The Irish
government nationalized Anglo Irish Bank after its chairman, Sean
Fitzpatrick, failed to disclose some €83 million in personal loans.
2009 Jan 19, Patrick Rocca
(42), Irish property tycoon, was found dead of apparent suicide at
his home near Dublin.
(WSJ, 1/21/09, p.A13)
2009 Feb 14, Irish authorities
learned about an oil spill through surveillance carried out by the
European Maritime Safety Agency in Lisbon, Portugal. Irish military
aircraft flew over the area and saw the Russian aircraft carrier
Admiral Kuznetsov, a Russian oil tanker, and a Russian oceangoing
tug near the slick. this was the biggest oil spill in the waters
around Ireland in the last ten years.
2009 Feb 20, Christopher Nolan
(43), an Irish poet and novelist, died in Dublin. He had refused to
let cerebral palsy get in the way of his writing. Using a "unicorn
stick" strapped to his forehead to tap the keys of a typewriter,
Nolan laboriously wrote out messages and, eventually, poems and
books as well. His autobiography, "Under the Eye of the Clock: The
Life Story of Christopher Nolan," won the prestigious Whitbread
Award in 1988.
2009 Feb 21, In Ireland around
100,000 people filled the streets of Dublin in protest at the
government's handling of the country's economic crisis.
2009 Feb 27, In Ireland the
family of banker Shane Travers was freed uninjured after he
delivered millions of euros stolen from his own branch. A gang had
taken his family hostage and threatened to kill them unless he
cooperated. Irish media put the amount at euro7 million ($9
million). The next day police recovered millions in stolen cash and
interrogated seven suspected robbers.
(AP, 2/27/09)(AP, 2/28/09)(SFC, 2/28/09, p.A2)
2009 Mar 17, Police in the
Republic of Ireland made public-order arrests from St. Patrick’s Day
festivities that easily exceeded 200, typical for recent years.
Inebriated mobs annually turned districts of Dublin and Belfast into
2009 Apr 22, In Ireland about
15 masked men armed with steel bars, chains and nail-studded clubs
ransacked a Shell pipeline site, in the latest trouble for Ireland's
most controversial energy project. Shell has spent four years
battling opponents of the project in both the courts and on the
ground in rural County Mayo, where the global energy giant has
government permission to pump natural gas from an untapped field 80
kilometers (50 miles) out in the Atlantic. It was the first time a
paramilitary-style gang has attacked a Shell site in Ireland.
2009 May 8, In Ireland Dr. Yuri
Melini (47), a leading Guatemalan environmentalist who recently
survived an assassination attempt, won a human rights award for his
efforts to stop the rapid growth of mines in his mineral-rich
nation. Melini received the annual Front Line Award for Human Rights
Defenders at Risk in a Dublin City Hall ceremony.
2009 May 20, Ireland’s High
Court Justice Sean Ryan unveiled a 2,600-page final report of
Ireland's Commission to Inquire Into Child Abuse, which is based on
testimony from thousands of former students and officials from more
than 250 church-run institutions. The nine-year investigation into
Ireland's Roman Catholic-run institutions says priests and nuns
terrorized thousands of boys and girls in workhouse-style schools
for decades, and government inspectors failed to stop the chronic
beatings, rapes and humiliation.
2009 Jun 26, Ireland recognized
the legal rights of same-sex couples for the first time in a civil
partnership bill that gave people in long-term relationships many of
the statutory rights of married couples.
2009 Jun 27, In Ireland some
12,000 people marched in this year’s Gay Pride Parade in downtown
(SSFC, 6/28/09, p.A4)
2009 Jul 3, In Sudan gunmen
kidnapped an Irish and Ugandan women from the office of the Irish
aid group Goal in the North Darfur city of Kutum. A Sudanese
watchman was also seized before being released later. Arab tribes
supported by the government were implicated. Sharon Commins (33) and
her Ugandan colleague, Hilda Kuwuki (42), were released on Oct 18.
(AFP, 7/4/09)(AP, 10/18/09)(AFP, 10/24/09)
2009 Jul 8, The Irish
government said Irish voters who rejected the EU's Lisbon Treaty
last year will be asked to vote again Oct. 2 on the long-delayed
blueprint for reform.
2009 Jul 29, Ireland said it
has agreed to accept two inmates from the Guantanamo prison camp in
Cuba within the next two months.
2009 Jul 31, The Irish Times
newspaper won a long-running legal battle to protect the identity of
a key source who provided documents showing that former PM Bertie
Ahern was under investigation for corruption. Colm Keena and
Geraldine Kennedy had refused to comply with an October 2007 High
Court judgment ordering them to identify their source for the
confidential documents from a fact-finding tribunal into political
corruption. The scandal spurred Ahern to resign in May 2008 after 11
years in power.
2009 Aug 20, Drug developer
Warner Chilcott, which focuses on women's healthcare and
dermatology, completed its move to Ireland from Bermuda.
2009 Sep 24, Ireland, the first
nation to tax plastic bags as a way to stop them littering the
countryside, announced plans to double its levy to a 44 euro cents
(59 US cents) per bag.
2009 Sep 27, Two Uzbeks,
including Oybek Jabbarov (31), freed from the Guantanamo Bay prison
arrived in Ireland. Amnesty International appealed to other EU
nations to deliver on pledges to give new homes to US terror
2009 Oct 2, Ireland voted 67%
to 33% in favor of the EU's Lisbon Treaty, overturning a previous no
vote and taking a key step towards ending the 27-nation bloc's
(AFP, 10/3/09)(Econ, 10/10/09, p.25)
2009 Oct 6, In Ireland the Rev.
Aengus Finucane (77), a Roman Catholic missionary, died. He braved
the civil war in Biafra (1967-1970) as a pioneer of Irish aid
efforts worldwide. That aid effort, initially known as Concern
Africa, shortened its name to Concern in 1970 as it gained ambitions
to provide food, medical support and education in many of the
world's poorest countries. He served as the charity's chief
executive from 1981 to 1997.
2009 Oct 10, Stephen Gately
(33), a singer with the Irish boy band Boyzone, died while visiting
Spain’s island of Mallorca. He made headlines a decade ago when he
came out as gay. An autopsy revealed that he died of excess fluid in
his lungs due to acute pulmonary edema.
(AP, 10/11/09)(AFP, 10/13/09)
2009 Oct 18, In Sudan Irish
national Sharon Commins and Ugandan Hilda Kawuki, who worked for
Irish charity GOAL, were freed. They had been kidnapped on July 3 at
gunpoint. The Irish Times newspaper reported on Oct 24 that a
150,000-euro (225,000-dollar) ransom was paid to secure the release
of two aid workers in the western Darfur region.
2009 Nov 26, In Ireland an
official report said the Roman Catholic archdiocese of Dublin
obsessively covered up widespread sexual abuse of children by
priests until the mid-1990s in a misuse of the Church's central role
in Irish society.
2009 Dec 17, The Vatican said
Bishop Donal Murray (69), a Roman Catholic bishop in Ireland, has
resigned after a probe of child sex abuse by clergymen accused him
of ignoring reports of crimes by priests in his diocese from
2010 Jan 1, In Ireland a new
law against blasphemy went into effect. It was already a criminal
offense under the country’s 1937 constitution, but the language was
too murky to make prosecutions feasible.
(SFC, 1/4/10, p.A2)
2010 Jan 4, Irish writer Colm
Toibin was named novelist of the year in Britain's lucrative Costa
Book Awards for his emigrant saga "Brooklyn."
2010 Jan 26, The prime
ministers of Britain and Ireland held a second day of talks with
political parties in Northern Ireland as they struggled to keep the
fractious Catholic-Protestant government there from collapsing.
2010 Jan 27, The prime
ministers of Britain and Ireland presented a compromise plan to keep
Northern Ireland's fractious politicians from breaking up their
Catholic-Protestant government, but neither side accepted the deal.
2010 Mar 4, Liam Adams, the
brother of Sinn Fein party leader Gerry Adams, surrendered to Irish
authorities to face 23 charges of sexually abusing his daughter. He
fled to the Republic of Ireland to avoid a November 2008 Belfast
hearing over the charges of abusing his daughter Aine for eight
years when she was a child.
2010 Mar 10, At least three
Swedish newspapers published a cartoon depicting the Prophet
Muhammad with the body of a dog after an alleged plot to murder
Swedish artist Lars Vilks, who created it, was uncovered in Ireland.
Irish police said those arrested were two Algerians, two Libyans, a
Palestinian, a Croatian and an American woman married to one of the
Algerian suspects. They were not identified by name. On March 13
Irish police said they had released three of the arrested Muslims
and American Jamie Paulin-Ramirez (31) without charges.
(AP, 3/10/10)(AP, 3/13/10)
2010 Mar 15, Irish police
charged two men from Algeria and Libya with minor offenses following
a weeklong investigation into Muslim extremists allegedly involved
in efforts to kill a Swedish artist. Ali Charafe Damache (49) of
Algeria was charged with sending a threatening text message. A
Libyan who used the false name Abdul-Salam Mansour Al-Jehani was
charged with immigration violations.
2010 Mar 24, Pope Benedict XVI
accepted the resignation of Bishop John Magee, a former papal aide
who stands accused of endangering children by failing to follow the
Irish church's own rules on reporting suspected pedophile priests to
2010 Mar 25, In Ireland a judge
in Limerick ruled that the city’s 110 pubs can open on April 2
because the city is hosting a major Irish rugby match. This will be
the 1st time that pubs anywhere in Ireland will open on Good Friday.
(SFC, 3/26/10, p.A2)
2010 Apr 22, Pope Benedict XVI
accepted the resignation of Irish Bishop James Moriarty of Kildare,
who acknowledged failing to report abuse to police, while a German
bishop also offered to step down.
2010 Apr 30, Ireland mourned
the shock loss of one of the nation's best-known broadcasters, Gerry
Ryan (53), who was found dead in his Dublin apartment after failing
to broadcast his morning radio show, an Irish institution.
2010 May 4, Iceland's volcanic
ash renewed its threat to European air space, forcing Ireland to
shut services temporarily for the first time in 12 days. Ireland and
Britain lifted flight restrictions after temporarily closing
airspace due to the return of ash.
(AP, 5/4/10)(AFP, 5/4/10)
2010 May 5, Britain and Ireland
grounded flights again after a fresh cloud of ash swept in from the
Icelandic volcano which sparked unprecedented air travel chaos in
Europe last month.
2010 May 11, The Irish
government passed a law outlawing the sale of many “head shop"
products. Anyone caught selling cocaine, cannabis and ecstasy
substitutes would face up to life in prison and any caught in
possession would face up to 7 years in jail.
(SSFC, 5/16/10, p.A4)
2010 Jun 15, Ireland's
government called on Israel to withdraw a staffer at its Dublin
embassy over the use of fake passports in the January assassination
of a Hamas commander in Dubai.
2010 Jul 30, Patrick Joseph
McCabe (74), a former Catholic priest, surrendered to US authorities
in Alameda, Ca.. They sought to extradite him to Ireland to face
sexual assault charges dating back from 1973-1981. On June 5, 2011,
McCabe was handed over to Ireland’s national police service.
(SFC, 8/11/10, p.A1)(SFC, 6/8/11, p.C4)
2010 Sep 8, Ireland announced
it plans to split its most troubled financial institution, Anglo
Irish Bank, in two as part of wider efforts to reassure
international lenders that the Irish are dealing with their debt
2010 Sep 21, Ireland sold
euro1.5 billion ($2 billion) in government bonds in a closely
watched test of whether international investors would keep buying
Irish treasuries despite the country's deficit, the biggest in
2010 Sep 28, Ireland's
borrowing costs leapt again after two credit rating agencies warned
its debt is at risk of further downgrades, piling pressure on the
government to bring forward its budget.
2010 Sep 28, Irish Nobel
laureate and peace activist Mairead Maguire (66) was detained after
arriving in Israel because she had been deported in June for trying
to reach Gaza by boat in defiance of an Israeli naval blockade.
Airport officials told her she would not be allowed in to Israel for
10 years. Her appeal on Oct 1 was rejected. She was deported on Oct
(AP, 10/1/10)(AP, 10/5/10)
2010 Sep 29, In northwest
Ireland managers at Anderson's Mink Farm said that many of their
cages and fences were cut and opened over the weekend, freeing an
estimated 5,000 animals into the wilds of County Donegal. About
28,000 others declined to bolt for freedom.
2010 Sep 30, Europe's
debt crisis dumped more woe on Ireland's weary taxpayers, as the
government said it needed to pour billions more of their money into
a collapsed banking system.
2010 Oct 6, Ratings agency
Fitch cut Ireland's credit worthiness another notch, citing the
country's long fight to emerge from record deficits, the toughest
bank-bailout effort in Europe and a lagging economy.
2010 Oct 8, Ireland's police
force detectives arrested nine suspected Irish Republican Army
dissidents and seized weapons. Police arrested two men aged 20 and
33 at a house near the Northern Ireland border and seized a gun and
ammunition. They arrested seven people aged 19 to 71 in southeast
Ireland and sealed off a home where they found bomb components.
2010 Oct 8, In Mozambique a
settling pond breached its wall at the Irish mining firm Kenmare
Resources’ Moma titanium and zircon mine in the northern province of
Nampula, flooding the area with a mixture of water, sand and clay. A
four-year-old girl was missing after the dam burst, flooding an area
housing 3,000 families.
2010 Oct 11, Irish police
uncovered a major arms and explosives cache hidden in a wood in
County Louth. The find included a machine gun, bomb-making equipment
and assorted ammunition. They described it as a significant blow to
2010 Nov 1, Ireland's health
minister, Mary Harney, was pelted with red paint as tempers flared
over government plans to slash euro1 billion ($1.4 billion) from the
costs of running an overloaded hospital network.
2010 Nov 4, Ireland’s
government said planned budget cuts worth €6 billion in 2011.
(Econ, 11/13/10, p.85)
2010 Nov 9, Ireland's human
rights watchdog appealed to the government to investigate the abuse
of women and girls in prison-style Catholic laundries, an issue left
unresolved by state probes into scandals inside other church-run
institutions. The so-called Magdalene Laundries, a network of 10
workhouses, operated in independent Ireland from the 1920s to the
2010 Nov 10, Ireland's
financial troubles loomed large as investors, betting that the
country soon could join Greece in seeking a bailout from the
European Union, drove the interest rate on the country's 10-year
borrowing to a new high.
2010 Nov 16, The European Union
issued a stark assessment of the Irish debt crisis, warning that the
future of the 27-nation bloc was at risk as ministers headed for
talks on an increasingly probable rescue.
2010 Nov 17, Ireland agreed to
work with an EU-IMF mission on urgent steps to shore up its
shattered banking sector.
2010 Nov 20, Ireland moved
towards finalizing its four-year crisis plan for cutting its budget
deficit which could pave the way for a multi-billion euro bailout.
2010 Nov 21, Ireland became the
second European country to ask for a multibillion euro emergency
loan to help stabilize its debt-ridden banks. Finance Minister Brian
Lenihan (1959-2011) recommended to a cabinet meeting that the
government should apply for a financial bailout program from the EU
and the IMF.
2010 Nov 22, Ireland's the
government said banks will be pruned down, merged or sold as part of
a massive EU-IMF bailout taking shape. Ireland's Greens pulled the
plug on the deeply unpopular coalition government by calling for a
national election in January after an EU/IMF bailout package is in
(AP, 11/22/10)(Reuters, 11/22/10)
2010 Nov 23, Ireland's banks
are up for sale, the country's central bank chief said, as the
government sought to cut them down in size after their reckless
lending forced the country to seek an international bailout.
2010 Nov 23, The European Union
urged Ireland to adopt an austerity budget on time to unlock
promised EU/IMF funding, responding to a deepening political crisis
that threatens to derail the financial rescue.
2010 Nov 24, Ireland set out a
four-year plan, aiming to make 15 billion euros worth of savings to
bring down its record deficit.
2010 Nov 28, The EU's finance
ministers agreed in an emergency meeting in Brussels to give Ireland
a euro67.5 billion bailout to help it survive its massive banking
crisis, and sketched out new rules for future emergencies to restore
faith in the euro currency.
2010 Dec 6, In Ireland Tony
Walsh (56) was convicted of raping 3 boys over a 5-year period three
decades earlier. Investigators had concluded that Walsh actually
raped and molested hundreds of boys and girls while serving as a
Dublin priest from 1978 to 1996. Investigators also reported that
the Vatican had tried to stop the Dublin church from defrocking
(SFC, 12/18/10, p.A4)
2010 Dec 15, Ireland's
parliament approved an €85 billion ($113 billion) EU/IMF bailout
package in the face of opposition threats to renegotiate the deal to
force losses on some senior bondholders in Irish banks.
(Reuters, 12/15/10)(Econ, 1/8/11, p.50)
2010 Dec 23, The Irish
government gained court approval to nationalize Allied Irish Banks,
the fourth bank taken over by Ireland amid a financial crisis
brought on by speculative real estate lending.
2010 Dec 29, In Northern
Ireland frustration and fears of disease mounted as 36,000 people
were left without water, some for more than a week, after a deep
freeze and a sudden thaw caused aging pipes to burst.
2010 Dec, Oliver O'Grady (66)
was arrested in Dublin, Ireland, after leaving a computer containing
pornographic images of children on a flight from Amsterdam. O'Grady
had worked as a priest in northern California from 1971 until 1993,
when he was arrested for abusing two brothers. He served seven years
in prison and was deported to his native Ireland in 2000. In 2012 he
was sentenced to 3 years in prison in Ireland for possessing child
2010 David Lynch authored “When
the Luck of the Irish Ran Out: The world’s Most Resilient Country
and Its Struggle to rise Again."
(Econ, 11/13/10, p.102)
2010 Fintan O’Toole authored
“Enough is Enough: How to Build a New Republic," a call for Ireland
to start afresh.
(Econ, 11/13/10, p.102)
2011 Jan 10, In Mauritius
Michaela McAreavey (27), an Irish beauty queen and daughter of a
high-profile Gaelic football manager, was found strangled to death
at the five-star Legends hotel on her honeymoon.
2011 Jan 22, Ireland’s PM Brian
Cowen announced his resignation as leader of the dominant Fianna
Fail party but intends to keep leading the government through the
2011 Jan 25, Ireland said it is
upgrading its diplomatic relations with the Palestinian territories
in recognition of progress being made by the Palestinian Authority.
The decision recognizes Ireland's long-standing support for
Palestinian statehood, but does not involve any recognition of a
2011 Feb 1, Ireland's PM Brian
Cowen (51) declared a formal end to his government, in a farewell
address tinged with regret over the nation's plunge to the brink of
bankruptcy. Analysts forecast Feb. 25 as the most likely election
2011 Feb 1, Ireland ordered a
Russian diplomat to be expelled, after an investigation concluded
that the country's intelligence service used stolen Irish identities
as cover for spies operating in the United States.
2011 Feb 6, Rock guitarist Gary
Moore (58), a former member of influential Irish band Thin Lizzy,
was found dead at a hotel on Spain's Costa del Sol. Thin Lizzy had
global hits in the 1970s with songs like "The Boys are Back in Town"
and "Whiskey in the Jar." Frontman Phil Lynott died in 1986, but
with a different lineup the band continues to tour today.
2011 Feb 10, In Ireland a
commuter plane crashed and burst into flames, killing six people and
injuring another six, as it tried to land in heavy fog at Cork
2011 Feb 25, Polls opened in
Ireland in a national election. Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny (59),
Ireland's longest-serving parliamentarian, looked almost certain to
be the next prime minister. Fine Gael won 76 seats; Labor won 37
seats. Fianna Fail lost 58 seats, dropping from 78 to 20.
(AP, 2/25/11)(Reuters, 2/26/11)(AFP, 2/27/11)(AP,
3/6/11)(Econ, 3/5/11, p.58)
2011 Mar 6, In Ireland the two
opposition parties that triumphed in elections, conservative Fine
Gael and left-wing Labor, announced they have reached agreement to
form the country's next coalition government following five days of
2011 Mar 9, Ireland's Enda
Kenny was elected prime minister with a record majority on and
pledged to lift the euro zone struggler out of its "darkest hour" as
talks on a bailout loom.
2011 May 17, Britain's Queen
Elizabeth arrived in Dublin for a historic state visit steeped in
symbolism and surrounded by security after a makeshift bomb was
found, highlighting the lingering hostility of a small minority.
2011 May 19, Garret FitzGerald
(b.1926)), Ireland's most popular elder statesman, died. He twice
served as prime minister (1981-1982, 1982-1987) and played a crucial
role in paving the way for peace in Northern Ireland.
2011 May 23, President Obama
arrived in Ireland to begin a six-day European tour. The president
took a helicopter from Dublin for a quick visit to Moneygall, the
site of a piece of his ancestry. Falmouth Kearney, a shoemaker and
Obama's thrice-removed grandfather on his Kansas-born mother's side,
left Moneygall for the US in 1850 at the height of Ireland's Great
Famine. Obama's roots in the town were discovered during the 2008
2011 Jul 7, The journal Current
Biology reported that all polar bears today have descended from one
female brown bear in Ireland between 20,000 and 50,000 years ago.
(SFC, 7/8/11, p.A6)
2011 Jul 20, Ireland’s
lawmakers declared that the Vatican encouraged Catholic bishops not
to tell police about suspected pedophile priests sabotaging the 1996
Irish bishops’ decision to begin reporting suspected cases of child
abuse to police.
(SFC, 7/21/11, p.A3)
2011 Jul 21, EU leaders cut the
interest rate on the Irish bailout.
(Econ, 10/22/11, p.63)
2011 Oct 8, A Global Irish
Economic forum in Dublin announced Diaspora 2016, a plan to gather
industry leaders with Irish roots to serve on Irish state boards
until 2016. The plan was formed by the Irish Technology Leadership
Group in San Jose, Ca.
(SFC, 12/9/11, p.D1)
2011 Oct 10, An Irish court
ordered independent opposition politician Mick Wallace to repay
almost 20 million euros (£17.4 million) in bank loans, raising the
possibility that the builder could face bankruptcy and have to quit
2011 Oct 19, British police in
riot gear used sledgehammers and crowbars to clear the way for the
eviction of Irish Travelers from the Dale Farm site, in fields 30
miles (50 km) east of London, where they have lived illegally for a
decade. There are estimated to be between 15,000 and 30,000 Irish
Travelers in Britain, where they are recognized as a distinct ethnic
2011 Oct 24, Ireland's U2 were
named as the greatest rock band of the past quarter of a century by
readers of music magazine Q. Chart-topping act Adele was a double
winner at the event, landing the prizes for best female and best
track for her hit Rolling In The Deep.
2011 Oct 25, In Ireland 2
people died and hundreds were stranded in northern and eastern
Ireland after torrential rain closed roads and rail lines, left
shops and homes under water. Dublin was put on an emergency footing.
2011 Oct 28, Ireland held
presidential elections. Michael D. Higgins (70), a champion of
Palestinian rights and a member of junior coalition partner Labour
Party, was ahead in most voting tallies across the country. Labor
candidate Higgins won with nearly 57 percent of votes, clear of
nearest rival, businessman Sean Gallagher.
(Reuters, 10/28/11)(AP, 10/29/11)
2011 Nov 3, Catholic Ireland
announced that it is closing its embassy to the Vatican. Dublin's
foreign ministry said the embassy was being closed because "it
yields no economic return" and that relations would be continued
with an ambassador in Dublin.
2011 Nov 23, Pope Benedict XVI
accepted the resignation of another Irish bishop, leaving seven of
Ireland's 26 Catholic dioceses without one and raising expectations
of major cutbacks in the size of the Irish church following
child-abuse scandals. Seamus Hegarty (71) offered his resignation
two weeks ago as bishop of Derry, citing an unspecified
"irreversible" illness as the reason for quitting.
2011 Dec 5, Ireland’s
Expenditure Minister Brendan Howlin announced $2.9 billion in
spending cuts to help reduce the country’s debt. Budget cuts will
close 31 police stations around the country.
(SSFC, 12/11/11, p.A4)
2012 Jan 10, A British court
annulled the bankruptcy of Sean Quinn (64), once the Republic of
Ireland's richest man, in a victory for Irish Bank Resolution
Corporation which has been pursuing debts of up to 2.9 billion euros
(2.4 billion pounds). He had turned a rural quarrying operation into
a 4 billion euro fortune before running up a large stake in the now
failed Anglo Irish Bank. Quinn made the bankruptcy declaration in
November, taking advantage of British laws which would have allowed
him to go back into business in under a year.
2012 Jan 18, Defrocked Irish
priest Peter Kennedy (72) returned to Dublin after being extradited
from Brazil. He faced 55 counts of sexually abusing 18 children from
1968-1984. Kennedy had fled to England in 2002 and to Brazil in
2012 Feb 9, In Buncrana,
Ireland, Andrew "Chubby" Allen (24) died after a gunman on foot
opened fire through a window of his home and struck the victim at
least once in the head. Allen last year fled his Northern Ireland
hometown of Londonderry after receiving death threats from
Republican Action Against Drugs, an organization forged by former
members of both the IRA and a rival group called the Irish National
2012 Feb 20, China's Vice
President Xi Jinping bade farewell to Ireland after a three-day
visit during which Dublin sought to provide Beijing with a financial
foothold in the EU.
2012 Mar 3, In Ireland the
heart of St. Laurence O’Toole (1128-1180), the patron saint of
Dublin, was stolen from Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin.
(SFC, 3/5/12, p.A2)
2012 Mar 9, In Ireland Paul
Begley (46), head of Ireland's largest fruit and vegetable
producers, was found guilty of dodging taxes and sentenced to 6
years in prison. He had instructed Chinese food suppliers from
2003-2007 to produce false invoices labeling garlic as apples
avoiding some $1.8 million in taxes.
(SFC, 3/10/12, p.A2)
2012 Mar 22, In Ireland the
Mahon Tribunal published a 3,270 page report on corruption in the
planning process in Dublin. It said corruption was endemic up to the
(Econ, 3/31/12, p.62)
2012 Mar 25, Bertie Ahern
(60), former Irish PM (1997-2008), announced he has resigned from
the Fianna Fail party rather than be expelled over an investigation
into secret payments he received while in office, but vowed to clear
2012 Apr 2, Ireland estimated
that about 50% of its 1.6 million homeowners failed to pay a new,
flat-rate $133 property tax by the march 31 deadline.
(SFC, 4/3/12, p.A2)
2012 May 24, In Japan Nicola
Furlong (21), an Irish fan of Rapper Nicki Minaj, was found dead in
a Tokyo hotel after attending a concert. Police arrested two
American men, dancer James Blackston (23) and a musician, 19, as
part of an investigation into her death. On June 14 police arrested
a 19-year-old American musician on suspicion of murdering Furlong.
(AFP, 6/1/12)(AFP, 6/14/12)
2012 May 27, In Ireland a race
car went out of control on a rural road and crashed into a crowd of
about 30 spectators, killing 2 people and seriously injuring 7.
Organizers of the Cavan Stages Rally involving about 100 cars in the
border county of Cavan canceled the event following the accident.
2012 May 31, Ireland's voters
agreed to ratify the European Union's deficit-fighting treaty with
"yes" votes reaching 60 percent. Leading Irish opponents of European
austerity conceded defeat even before all ballots were counted.
2012 Nov 2, Bankrupt tycoon
Sean Quinn (65), once Ireland's richest man and a celebrated
self-made billionaire, was sent to jail for nine weeks after a judge
found him guilty of stripping foreign assets from his crumbling
business empire in violation of court orders.
2012 Nov 11, Ireland's PM Enda
Kenny laid a wreath in Enniskillen to honor fallen soldiers at a
British Remembrance Day service for the first time, the latest
gesture of reconciliation between historic foes. Deputy Prime
Minister Eamon Gilmore became the first Irish minister to attend a
Remembrance Day service at Belfast City Hall, laying a wreath at the
2012 Nov 14, The debate over
legalizing abortion in Ireland flared after the government confirmed
Savita Halappanavar, a miscarrying Indian woman suffering from blood
poisoning, was refused a quick termination of her pregnancy and died
on Oct 28 in an Irish hospital.
2012 Nov 17, In Ireland about
10,000 people marched through Dublin and observed a minute's silence
Saturday in memory of the Indian dentist who died of blood poisoning
in an Irish hospital after being denied an abortion.
2012 Nov 21, Ireland's police
force arrested 113 suspected drug dealers and seized five marijuana
growing facilities in a two-day operation in the nation's
biggest-ever crackdown on triad drug-trafficking gangs. Police said
most of those arrested are Chinese and Vietnamese nationals involved
in growing, smuggling and selling marijuana.
2012 Nov, Intrade, a
Dublin-based “prediction market" was sued by America’s Commodity
Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) for offering illegal
contracts on the price of goods regulated by the agency. In May
Intrade shit down citing financial irregularities.
(Econ, 4/13/13, p.70)
2012 Dec 4, Eamon Kelly (65), a
senior figure in Ireland's criminal underworld, was chased down the
street and shot to death near his Dublin home, two years after
surviving a similar assassination bid. The Real IRA paramilitary
group was suspected of being behind the hit. Real IRA figures in
recent years have demanded a slice of the gangsters'
drug-trafficking profits in exchange for not killing them or burning
down their business fronts.
2013 Jan 17, A British judge
sentenced Achilleas Kallakis (44), a fake property tycoon, to seven
years in jail for defrauding two banks out of over 700 million
pounds ($1.1 billion), but said Allied Irish Banks and Bank of
Scotland deserved some blame for poor risk controls. Co-defendant
Alexander Williams (44), convicted of the same counts for his role
in producing forged documents to back up Kallakis's applications for
loans, was sentenced to 5 years.
2013 Jan 24, Britain’s and
Ireland’s energy ministers signed a memorandum of understanding in
Dublin, agreeing to assess the costs and benefits of trading
renewable energy, to look at potential projects and to consider
sharing renewable energy statistics.
2013 Feb 5, In Ireland an
official report, that ran to almost 1,000 pages, said that more than
a quarter of the women and girls subjected to harsh discipline and
unpaid work at 10 laundries, run by Catholic nuns, were sent there
by the Irish state.
2013 Feb 7, Ireland dissolved
one of its "bad banks", the Irish Bank Resolution Corp (IBRC), in an
emergency measure designed to pave the way for a new debt-repayment
deal with the European Central Bank.
2013 Feb 9, In Ireland trade
unionists marched in Dublin and other cities to protest the
continuing high cost of the country’s bank bailout program.
(SSFC, 2/10/13, p.A4)
2013 Feb 19, Ireland’s PM Enda
Kenny apologized on behalf of the government for decades of abuses
in the Magdalene Laundries.
(SFC, 2/20/13, p.A6)
2013 Feb 22, Ireland’s
government said B&F Meats in Carrick-on-Suir, County Tipperary,
has been caught labeling horse meat as beef and shipping it to a
company in the Czech Rep.
(SFC, 2/23/13, p.A2)
2013 Feb 27, In Ireland Ali
Charaf Damache (47) was arrested while leaving a courthouse in
Waterford. He had just walked free from the court, after three years
in prison when detectives acting on an American extradition warrant
rearrested and escorted him, handcuffed, to an unmarked police car.
The FBI and US Justice Department accuse Damache of being the
ringleader behind an unrealized 2009 conspiracy to target artist
Lars Vilks in Sweden over his series of drawings depicting the
Muslim prophet Muhammad as a dog.
2013 Mar 5, Frozen food maker
Birds Eye said horse meat DNA found in two of its products came from
an Irish meat processor that is part of one of Ireland's largest
agricultural businesses. The company said investigations had found
its Belgian supplier Frigilunch NV had unknowingly sourced meat with
horse DNA from Irish meat processor QK Meats.
2013 Mar 22, In Ireland Patrick
McCabe (77), a former Catholic priest who had worked in California,
was sentenced to 18 month in prison for assaulting two boys decades
ago in Ireland. McCabe was soon released based on his age and
statements of contrition and the fact that he had already served 21
months of a maximum 2-year sentence.
(SFC, 3/23/13, p.C2)(SFC, 3/26/13, p.A2)
2013 Apr 12, European Union
finance ministers said they've agreed to extend the repayment of
emergency loans to Ireland and Portugal for a further seven years,
easing the pressure on both countries to exit their bailout programs
and resume normal borrowing.
2013 Apr 16, A majority of
Irish public sector workers rejected a new pay deal and warned the
government against unilaterally cutting wages, giving it a headache
as it seeks to exit an EU-IMF bailout later this year.
2013 Apr 18, Irish company ABP
Foods, at the center of a scandal in Europe over horsemeat in beef
products, said it is leaving the frozen burger market after selling
the factory where burgers containing horse DNA were first
2013 Apr 29, Ireland's Supreme
Court ruled that a paralyzed Irish woman, who wants to die, cannot
legally commit suicide with her partner's help. Judges said
lawmakers could pass such a law to permit Marie Fleming (59) to die
at a time of her choosing, but no such statute existed yet.
2013 May 7, The Irish
government said it is pardoning nearly 5,000 men who deserted its
armed forces to fight for Britain during WWII.
(SFC, 5/8/13, p.A2)
2013 Jun 26, The Irish
government agreed to pay up 58 million euros ($75 million) to
hundreds of women forced to work at the Catholic Church's notorious
Magdalene Laundries after a report found that a quarter of them were
sent there by the Irish state.
2013 Jul 5, Irish police
charged eight men with Irish Republican Army membership after police
raided a suspected meeting of the outlaws' Dublin leadership,
inflicting what a senior policeman called a major blow to the "New
IRA" splinter group.
2013 Jul 12, Irish lawmakers
voted 127-31 to back the country’s first bill on abortion,
legalizing the practice in exceptional cases where doctors deem the
woman's life at risk from her pregnancy.
(AP, 7/12/13)(SFC, 7/12/13, p.A2)
2013 Jul 30, Ireland's
President Michael D. Higgins signed the country's first bill on
abortion into law, legalizing the practice in exceptional cases
where doctors deem a woman's life at risk.
2013 Aug 30, Seamus Heaney
(74), Ireland's foremost poet and Nobel Prize winner (1995), died in
Dublin after a half-century exploring the beauty of Ireland and the
political torment within the nation's soul.
2013 Oct 4, Ireland held
a nationwide referendum to abolish the country's Senate.
Proponents said the upper house wields no essential powers and its
closure could save taxpayers 20 million euros ($27 million)
annually. Voters rejected the referendum with a 51.7% no vote.
(AP, 10/5/13)(SSFC, 10/6/13, p.A3)
2013 Oct 24, An Austrian
student group fighting for online privacy in Europe got the go-ahead
for a legal challenge in Ireland's High Court over the transfer of
personal data to a US spy agency.
2013 Nov 14, EU officials
welcomed the end of bailout support for Spain and Ireland, saying
that showed the effectiveness of more than four years of efforts to
cut excessive government debt.
2013 Dec 15, Ireland formally
exited its three-year bailout program, becoming the first eurozone
nation to do so, but authorities warned of further austerity to
ensure economic recovery.
2014 Jan 13, In Ireland Saverio
Bellante (34) of Italy was charged with the murder of Tom O'Gorman.
Bellante said he was guilty of cutting open his Dublin landlord's
chest and tried to eat his heart following a fight over a chess
2014 Jan 28, Europe's top human
rights court in Strasbourg, France, ruled that Ireland's government
failed in its duty to protect children in the case of a woman
sexually abused by a lay teacher at a state-backed Roman Catholic
school in 1973. Louise O'Keeffe (48) said she was abused by her
teacher during lessons in his classroom when she was 9 years old.
She argued that the Irish state failed to put in place appropriate
measures to stop "systematic abuse" at the Dunderrow National
2014 Feb 18, Irish drugmaker
Actavis PLC said it plans to buy Forest Laboratories Inc. in an
approximately $25 billion deal that will boost the company's
presence in US primary-care doctor offices and bulk up its portfolio
of branded drugs.
2014 Mar 10, Fruit supply
companies Chiquita of the United States and Fyffes of Ireland said
they had agreed to merge to create the world's biggest banana
supplier. Fyffes is Europe's biggest banana importer and the oldest
industry brand, dating to 1929.
2014 Mar 25, Ireland's police
chief Martin Callinan resigned following months of criticism of his
force's handling of allegations of illegal wire-tapping and corrupt
enforcement of traffic laws.
2014 Apr 8, President Michael
Higgins became the first Irish head of state to make a state visit
to Britain, crowning a big improvement in historically fraught
relations between Dublin and its former colonial master.
2014 Jun 10, Ireland's
government said it is launching an investigation into mistreatment
and burial of babies who died between 1925-1962 in nun-operated
homes for unmarried mothers.
2014 Jun 15, US medical device
manufacturer Medtronic said it has agreed to buy Ireland-based
competitor Covidien for $42.9 billion in cash and stock.
2014 Sep 30, The EU published a
warning to Ireland that the country had granted Apple tax advantages
the could amount to illegal state aid.
(SFC, 10/1/14, p.C1)
2014 Nov 1, In Ireland some
100,000 people marched against a new tax on water, imposed on Oct 1
as part of the country’s successful exit from an int’l. bailout.
Charges were espected to cost a typical household $350/year.
(SSFC, 11/2/14, p.A3)
2014 Dec 10, The Irish
Parliament adopted a nonbinding resolution supporting an independent
(http://tinyurl.com/lkn9ehu)(SFC, 12/12/14, p.A2)
2014 Dec 26, Ireland's
second-highest court ruled that life support should be removed from
a brain-dead pregnant woman because her living 18-week-old fetus
can't survive to birth.
2015 Jan 5, Ireland said the
United States will permit imports of beef from the country, the
first European Union state allowed to resume sales since the mad cow
disease scare over 15 years ago.
2015 Jan 7, Shareholders of
medical device maker Medtronic, based in Minneapolis, Minn.,
approved the acquisition of Ireland-based surgical supplier Covidien
PLC in a corporate deal valued at about $48 billion. The acquisition
moves the legal headquarters of the combined company to Ireland.
2015 Jan 18, Ireland’s Health
Minister Leo Varadkar said he's gay on his 36th birthday, becoming
the first openly homosexual government figure in the history of the
traditionally conservative Catholic country.
2015 May 13, In Ireland two
improvised explosive devices were found and disarmed near Leitrim
and other bomb-making equipment was found elsewhere as 20 searches
were conducted ahead of a planned visit by Britain's Prince Charles.
Six men were arrested for suspected terrorist offenses.
2015 May 22, Ireland voted on
whether to allow gay marriage. Irish voters backed same-sex marriage
by a margin of 62.1% making it the first country to adopt same-sex
marriage via a popular vote.
(Reuters, 5/22/15)(AP, 5/23/15)
2015 Jun 27, In Ireland tens of
thousands of revelers created a carnival atmosphere in Dublin’s gay
2015 Jul 15, Ireland’s
transgender people won legal recognition of their status through the
passage of the Gender Recognition Bill, allowing them to change
their legal gender with no medical or state intervention.
2015 Jul 27, Israel's Teva
Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. said it is purchasing Dublin-based
Allergan PLC's generic pharmaceuticals business for $40.5 billion,
in what Israeli analysts called the largest-ever acquisition by an
2015 Aug 11, At a forum in
Dublin, Ireland, Amnesty Int’l. approved a controversial policy to
endorse the decriminalization of the sex trade.
(SFC, 8/12/15, p.A2)
2015 Sep 10, Irish retailer
Primark, owned by Associated British Foods (ABF) opened its first
shop in America with a flagship store in Boston.
(http://tinyurl.com/peo64ze)(Econ, 9/5/15, p.65)
2015 Oct 2, In Ireland Brian
Friel (86), Tony Award-winning playwright, died. He created "Dancing
at Lughnasa" (1990) and more than 30 other plays.
2015 Oct 5, Irish-born William
Campbell (85) and Japan's Satoshi Omura (80) won half of the Nobel
Prize for Medicine for discovering avermectin, a derivative of which
has been used to treat hundreds of millions of people with river
blindness and lymphatic filariasis, or elephantiasis. China's Tu
Youyou (84) was awarded the other half of the prize for discovering
artemisinin, a drug that has slashed malaria deaths.
2015 Oct 10, In Ireland 9
people, including an infant, died in a fire at a Dublin mobile home
camp for native Gypsies.
2015 Oct 19, Lawyers said
Ireland has agreed to pay the Romanian Gypsy parents of a blond boy
60,000 euros ($68,000) in compensation after conceding that police
in 2013 employed prejudicial racial profiling when seizing the