#OTD in 1918 – Birth of comedian, writer and actor, Spike Milligan, in India.

‘All I ask is the chance to prove that money can’t make me happy.’ –Spike Milligan Spike Milligan’s early life was spent in India, where he was born, but the majority of his working life was spent in the United Kingdom. He became an Irish citizen in 1962 after the British government declared him stateless. […]

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#OTD in 1871 – Birth of poet and playwright, John Millington Synge, in Dublin.

Birth of Irish playwright, poet and author John Millington Synge in Rathfarnham, Co Dublin. Synge was one of the leading lights of what was known as the Irish Literary Revival and along with William Butler Yeats and Lady Gregory, founding members of the Abbey Theatre. His most famous work is The Playboy of the Western […]

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#OTD in Irish History | 16 April:

1660 – Birth of physician and naturalist, Sir Hans Sloane, in Killyleagh, Co Down. Perhaps, the biggest impact Sloan made on Europe, was the introduction of drinking milk chocolate, which he had tasted during a visit to Jamaica. 1701 – Some MPs and gentlemen of Co Carlow petition against the return and residence of Mark […]

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#OTD in 1941 – 15/16 | In the Belfast Blitz, two-hundred bombers of the German Luftwaffe attacked Belfast, killing one thousand people.

Belfast was poorly prepared for the blitz compared with cities in Britain, few children had been evacuated, air raid shelters were sparse and defensive arrangements weak. Yet the Harland and Wolff ship building yards and Northern Ireland’s strategic role in the battle of the Atlantic made it a likely target. When German bombers struck on […]

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#OTD in 1989 – Hillsborough disaster: A human crush occurred at Hillsborough Stadium, home of football club Sheffield, resulting in the deaths of 96 Liverpool F.C. fans.

Justice for the ’96. YNWA! On 15 April 1989, ninety-six children, men and women lost their lives at the FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest at Sheffield Wednesday’s Hillsborough stadium. Investigations into the disaster followed with many fans showing that their ticket for the semi-final hadn’t even been checked – still in it’s […]

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#OTD in 1912 – The Titanic sank on her maiden voyage with the loss of 1,513 souls, many of them Irish; 732 would survive.

Just before midnight on 14 April, the RMS Titanic failed to divert its course from an iceberg and ruptured at least five of its hull compartments. These compartments filled with water and pulled down the bow of the ship. Because the Titanic’s compartments were not capped at the top, water from the ruptured compartments filled […]

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#OTD in 1848 – The tricolour national flag of Ireland was presented to the public for the first time by Thomas Francis Meagher and the Young Ireland Party, in Dublin.

In 1848, Thomas Meagher and William Smith O’Brien went to France to study revolutionary events, and returned to Ireland with the new Flag of Ireland, a tricolour of green, white and orange made and given to them by French women sympathetic to the Irish cause. The acquisition of the flag is commemorated at the 1848 […]

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#OTD in Irish History | 15 April:

1642 – Irish Confederate Wars: A Confederate Irish militia was routed in the Battle of Kilrush when it attempted to halt the progress of a Parliamentarian army. Though outnumbered, Ormonde managed to defeat the rebels and marched on to Dublin by 17 April. 1642 – A Scottish army under Robert Munroe landed at Carrickfergus. 1707 […]

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#OTD in 1912 – The Titanic, the world’s largest ship built at Belfast’s Harland and Wolfe, hits an iceberg at 11:40pm.

Just before midnight in the North Atlantic, the RMS Titanic failed to divert its course from an iceberg, rupturing its hull, began to sink. The Titanic was designed by the Irish shipbuilder William Pirrie and spanned 883 feet from stern to bow. Its hull was divided into 16 compartments that were presumed to be watertight. […]

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