Today in Irish History – 13 June:

1699 – Molly Malone reputedly “dies of the fever”. The famous song, “Sweet Molly Malone” is a tribute to the memory of a real person who was a fishwife selling cockles and mussels in the streets of Dublin.

1713 – Jonathan Swift becomes Dean of St Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin.

1748 – Sir Robert King, MP for Boyle, Co. Roscommon, is created Baron Kingsborough. Earl of Kingston is a title in the Peerage of Ireland. It was created in 1768 for Edward King, 1st Viscount Kingston. He had already succeeded his father as fifth Baronet of Boyle Abbey and been created Baron Kingston, of Rockingham in the County of Roscommon in 1764 and Viscount Kingston in 1766, also in the Peerage of Ireland.

1798 – United Irishmen Rebellion: The Battle of Ballynahinch continues.

1865 – Birth of W.B. Yeats in Dublin.

1884 – Birth of Mary Colum (née Maguire) in Collooney, Co Sligo, wife of Padraic Colum, Irish literary critic and founder of The Irish Review.

1920 – Further rioting in Derry leads to displacement of Irish nationalists from the Waterside area by unionists and an attack on the Bogside area by the UVF and Dorset Regiment. IRA reinforcements from Co Donegal under Peadar O’Donnell eventually lead to the restoration of order. Forty people had been killed since April.

1951 – Éamon de Valera becomes Taoiseach.

1971 – Death of Máiréad Ni Ghráda, the first major woman playwright in the Irish language. She was also a radio broadcaster, and the author of school textbooks and children’s books in Irish.

1999 – Tuam, Co Galway celebrates its first triple ordination since the early 1980s at the Cathedral of the Assumption.

2000 – The original manuscript of James Joyce’s Ulysses arrives in its ‘spiritual home’ for the first time when it goes on display at the Chester Beatty library in Dublin Castle.

2000 – The world’s first virtual university for surgeons goes on-line from the Royal College of Surgeons. Called BeST, or electronic Basic Surgical Training, it is launched by the Minister for Health and Children, Micheál Martin from the Dublin city centre college.

2006 – Following a lengthy battle with prostate cancer and a heart condition, former Taoiseach Charles Haughey dies at his home in the Kinsealy area of Dublin at the age of 80. The former Fianna Fail leader was a highly controversial figure who was rarely out of the headlines. He was first elected to the Dail in 1957, but was sacked from his ministerial position in 1970.

Photo: Kells, Co Meath

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