Today in Irish History – 12 March:

1295 – Richard de Burgh is released by the council in parliament at Kilkenny.

1685 – George Berkeley, philosopher, physicist, mathematician, Dean of Derry and Bishop of Cloyne, is born in Dysart Castle, Co Kilkenny. The university town of Berkeley in California is named in his honour.

1689 – The Williamite War in Ireland begins (ends 3 October 1691).

1832 – Birth of Capt. Charles Boycott, despised English estate manager in Ireland, from whose name the word ‘boycott’ is taken.

1860 – Birth of Michael O’Hickey in Carrickbeg, Co Waterford. He was a son of a Fenian, an Irish Catholic priest and professor of Irish at Maynooth College and an Irish language campaigner.

1873 – Gladstone’s Irish University Bill is defeated.

1875 – After being barred as an undischarged felon from taking his seat as elected MP for Tipperary, John Mitchel is re-elected on this date. He dies eight days later.

1798 – Having been betrayed by Thomas Reynolds, the Leinster Directory of United Irishmen leaders is arrested.

1860 – Michael O’Hickey, professor of Irish and Irish-language campaigner, is born in Carrickbeg, Co Waterford.

1921 – A firefight took place between the Kilkenny IRA unit and British forces at Garrykerin House on the Clonmel-Kilkenny road. One Black and Tan constable was killed.

1923 – Five Republican prisoners (this time from IRA Kerry no. 3 Brigade) are killed at Cahersiveen, Kerry. They are taken from a National Army post in the town at gunpoint by Dublin Guard officers, under protest from the garrison. The prisoners are then shot in the legs to prevent escape and then blown up by a landmine by National Army troops.

1923 – One anti-Treaty fighter and one Free State soldier are killed in a gun battle after an attack on a Free State post at Rooskey, Co Roscommon.

1930 – Pat Taaffe, jockey and trainer, is born in Rathcoole, Co Dublin.

1944 – Britain bans all travel to and from Ireland in an effort to prevent news of Allied preparations for the invasion of France reaching the Germans.

1974 – Billy Fox, MP for Co. Monaghan, is assassinated.

2000 – National Tree Week ends with a mass planting of 5,000 trees at Corkagh Park in Clondalkin.

2001 – Department of Agriculture vets are investigating another suspected case of foot and mouth in the North. Tests are carried out on a sheep taken from a farm in Augher to an abattoir in Dungannon, Co Tyrone, for slaughter.

Image | Winter Roads of Errigal, Mount Errigal, Co Donegal, Hibernia Landscapes by Stephen Wallace

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