1805 – Michael Doheny, poet and Young Irelander, is born near Fethard, Co. Tipperary.
1849 – Novelist, Maria Edgeworth, dies in Mostrim, Co. Longford. She is laid to rest in a vault at Edgeworthstown Church. The Great Famine which decimates the people she loves mars her last years. Even though in her late seventies, she worked strenuously for the relief of the stricken peasants at the height of the famine. She shows the same involvement and generosity throughout her entire life and devotes her best talents to the betterment of the people of her adoption. Her books on the Irish people bring her world fame and the acclaim of such writers as Sir Walter Scott, Jane Austen, Byron and the Russian writer Turgenev.
1859 – Birth in Edinburgh of Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes. Doyle was the eldest son of 10 siblings born to Irish parents Charles Doyle and Mary Foley.
1870 – Birth of Eva Gore-Booth, poet, trade unionist and feminist, on the Lissadell Estate in Co. Sligo.
1920 – Birth of Oliver J. Flanagan, Fine Gael politician.
1922 – Unionist MP William Twaddell was assassinated by the IRA in Belfast city centre. The Unionist government of Northern Ireland introduced internment in response and arrested up to 350 republican suspects. A total of 724 people were interned in Northern Ireland up to the end of 1924.
1932 – Death of Augusta Persse, better known as Lady Augusta Gregory, Irish dramatist, folklorist and theatre director; also a co-founder of the Abbey Theatre.
1936 – Aer Lingus (Aer Loingeas) is founded by the Irish government as the national airline of the Republic of Ireland.
1941 – Caitlin Maude, Irish language activist, is born.
1943 – Birth of Betty Williams, former peace activist and 1976 Nobel Peace Prize winner.
1946 – George Best, the greatest player of his generation and the world’s first superstar footballer, is born in Belfast.
1950 – Bill Whelan, musician and composer, is born in Limerick; he is best known for composing the music to Riverdance.
1955 – Mary Black, singer, is born in Dublin.
1968 – Birth of Graham, an Irish television writer, actor and director who, often in partnership with Arthur Mathews, has written or co-written a number of popular television comedies. He is most noted for his involvement in Father Ted, Black Books and The IT Crowd.
1971 – Members of the Irish Women’s Liberation Movement defy the law by bringing contraceptives bought in Belfast into Connolly railway station in Dublin.
1972 – Death of Laois man Cecil Day-Lewis, one of the English language’s leading poets of the early part of the 20th century, and father of actor Daniel Day-Lewis.
1995 – U.S. President Bill Clinton approves a visa for Irish nationalist leader Gerry Adams to enter the United States.
1997 – Pneumonia causes the quiet passing of Dr. Noel Browne in the University College Hospital Galway at the age of 81. As Minister of Health, Dr. Browne had lain the foundation stone of the same Hospital almost fifty years before.
1998 – The Good Friday Agreement is overwhelmingly endorsed in referendums North (71%) and South (94%).
2000 – A survey shows that half of Ireland’s small and medium-size businesses have their own website.
2003 – Hurling reaches its highest peak when Gerard McDonnell from Limerick brought the spirit of the GAA to Mount Everest; he sent a ball flying above 29,000 feet.
2003 – The Official Languages Bill 2002, introduced by the Minister for the Gaeltacht, Mr Ó Cuív, will give citizens the right to conduct their business with any State agency or Government department, in Irish.
Image | Errigal Mountain, Co Donegal | Fiachra Mangan Photography
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