#OTD in 1919 – The birth of Cairbre, the MGM lion, in Dublin Zoo. He wasn’t African or even Californian, he was a genuine Dub and was named after Cú Chulainn’s charioteer, or a High King of Ireland.

Cairbre, later re-christened Leo and the first MGM lion to roar on the silver screen. The problem is, there were at least 5 MGM lions, all of whom were rechristened Leo. The most likely candidate is this one, photographed being filmed in the early 1930s. Hear him roar (or gently growl) in the MGM video. […]

Read More

#OTD in 1903 – An elephant named Sita kills her keeper tending her sore foot in Dublin Zoo.

Dublin Zoo was opened in 1831, making it the fourth oldest zoo in Europe. The Zoo’s first elephant was a female called Sita, and her keeper was James McNally. In 1903 Sita cut her foot and as James was applying ointment to her wound, she knocked him down with her trunk and stamped on his […]

Read More

#OTD in 1919 – The birth of Cairbre, the MGM lion, in Dublin Zoo. He wasn’t African or even Californian, he was a genuine Dub and was named after Cú Chulainn’s charioteer, or a High King of Ireland.

Cairbre, later re-christened Leo and the first MGM lion to roar on the silver screen. The problem is, there were at least 5 MGM lions, all of whom were rechristened Leo. The most likely candidate is this one, photographed being filmed in the early 1930s. Hear him roar (or gently growl) in the MGM video. […]

Read More

#OTD in Irish History – 20 March:

1761 – Robert Simms, a founder of the United Irishmen and proprietor of the Northern Star, is born. 1780 – Miles Byrne, United Irishman and officer in Napoleon’s Irish Legion, is born in Monaseed, Co. Wexford. 1856 – Birth of Sir John Lavery, an Irish painter best known for his portraits. 1875 – Death of […]

Read More

Today in Irish History – 28th February:

1713 – Henry Pyne, MP for Dungarvan, aged about 24 and the father of three children, is killed in a duel with Theophilus Biddulph at Chelsea Fields, London; Biddulph will later be convicted of manslaughter. 1790 – The Northern Whig Club is founded in Belfast. 1799 – William Dargan, railway engineer and philanthropist, is born […]

Read More