Dame Alice Kyteler | Kilkenny’s Medieval Witch

Dame Alice Kyteler was born at Kyteler’s House, Kilkenny in 1280 to wealthy Norman parents. Forty-four years later, in 1324, she fled to England to escape being burned as a witch and in July of that year, her property, including Kytelers Inn was confiscated. In the intervening years Dame Alice had married four times, had […]

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#OTD in 1919 – Daíl Éireann, chaired by Sean T. O’Kelly meets for the very first time at Mansion House in Dublin.

The first meeting of Dáil Éireann took place in the Mansion House, the residence of the Lord Mayor of Dublin. The session lasted a mere two hours. They were two of the most momentous hours in Ireland’s history. During this brief period the Dáil adopted a Constitution and approved the Declaration of Independence. By doing […]

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Ireland’s Independence Day

The Declaration of Independence was a document adopted by Dáil Éireann, at its first meeting in the Mansion House, Dublin, on 21 January 1919. It followed from the Sinn Féin election manifesto of December 1918. Texts of the declaration were adopted in three languages: Irish, English and French.   The Irish Republic claimed jurisdiction over […]

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#OTD in 1916 – James Connolly vanished for a three-day meeting with the IRB military council where they agreed upon joint plans for an insurrection on Easter Sunday.

A secret meeting between Pádraig Pearse and James Connolly held over three days from 19 January 1916, where the outcome is that Connolly commits the Irish Citizen Army to join with the Irish Republican Brotherhood (IRB) and the date for the Rising is agreed. In early January 1916, and in high anxiety that Dublin Castle would […]

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#OTD in 1860 – Birth of Irish Celtic Scholar, Eleanor Hull, in England, of a Co Down family.

    Eleanor Henrietta Hull was a writer, journalist and scholar of Old Irish. She was educated at Alexandra College, Dublin and was a student of Irish Studies. On 26 April 1898 she was a co-founder of the Irish Texts Society for the publication of early manuscripts. Douglas Hyde was President and Frederick York Powell […]

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#OTD in 1939 – IRA Army Council declare war on England and the Sabotage Campaign (S-Plan) begins a day later.

On 12 January 1939, the Army Council sent an ultimatum, signed by Patrick Fleming, to British Foreign Secretary Lord Halifax. The communiqué duly informed the British government of “The Government of the Irish Republic’s” intention to go to “war”. Excerpt from the ultimatum: I have the honour to inform you that the Government of the […]

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#OTD in 1871 – Alexander Sullivan, barrister and last King’s Serjeant of Ireland, is born in Dublin; best known as the leading counsel for the defence in the 1916 treason trial of Roger Casement.

Best known as the leading counsel for the defence in the 1916 treason trial of Roger Casement. Sullivan failed to win the case and Casement was sentenced to death. After Roger Casement’s capture on Banna Strand he was brought to London. During his interrogation on Easter Monday, news of the Rising filtered through, and by […]

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#OTD in 1917 – Hanna Sheehy Skeffington travelled to New York with her son, Owen, to speak about her husband’s murder during the Easter Rising.

In an interview with the New York Times, Hanna Sheehy Skeffington says she was determined to come to America to tell people about ‘my husband’s murder’, despite the British government’s refusal to give her a passport. ‘I am not willing to tell how I got here’, she said, before adding that she had been forced […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 13 January:

1695 – Jonathan Swift was ordained as a priest in the Church of Ireland. 1702 – Birth of Thomas Arthur Lally in Romans, France. He was a French General of Irish Jacobite ancestry. Lally commanded French forces, including two battalions of his own red-coated Regiment of Lally of the Irish Brigade, in India during the […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 10 January:

1751 – Cornelius Bolton, politician, Volunteer and improving landlord is born. He was a very progressive landlord and was very interested in helping his tenants progress. 1814 – Aubrey Thomas De Vere, a poet who adapted early Gaelic tales, is born in Co Limerick. He helped the Celtic revival encouraging the study of Celtic legend […]

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