#OTD in 1942 – Death of Peadar Kearney, writer of the Irish National Anthem, ‘A Soldier’s Song’.

Peadar Kearney was born at 68 Lower Dorset Street, Dublin in 1883, he often walked along Gardiner Street to the Custom House and along the Quays. His father was from Louth and his mother was originally from Meath. He was educated at the Model School, Schoolhouse Lane and St Joseph’s Christian Brothers School in Fairview, […]

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#OTD in 1871 – Margaret Dobbs, Irish historian, language activist and defender of Roger Casement, is born in Dublin.

‘Ireland is a closed book to those who do not know her language. No one can know Ireland properly until one knows the language. Her treasures are hidden as a book unopened. Open the book and learn to love your language’. –Margaret Dobbs Dobbs’ father was Justice of the Peace for Co Antrim, High Sheriff […]

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#OTD in 1893 – Birth of General Liam Lynch, Chief of Staff, IRA, in Limerick.

Liam Lynch was born in Barnagurraha, Co Limerick to Jeremiah and Mary Kelly Lynch. At 17 he was apprenticed to O’Neill’s hardware in Mitchelstown. Shortly after his apprenticeship began he joined the Gaelic League and the Ancient Order of Hibernians. He joined the Irish Volunteers after witnessing the arrests of the Kent family by British […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 6 November:

Feast of All the Saints of Ireland. 1649 – Death of Owen Roe O’Neill. 1812 – Charles Graves, bishop and mathematician, is born in Dublin. 1885 – Birth of Martin O’Meara, VC at Terryglass, Lorrha, Co Tipperary. He was an Australian recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest award for gallantry in the face of […]

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#OTD in 1949 – Death of Eoin MacNeill, Irish historian and founder of the Irish Volunteers.

Eoin MacNeill was an Irish scholar, Irish language enthusiast, nationalist activist, and Sinn Féin politician. MacNeill has been described as “the father of the modern study of early Irish medieval history.” A key figure of the Gaelic revival, he was a co-founder with Douglas Hyde of the Gaelic League, to preserve Irish language and culture. […]

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Pádraig Ó Siochfhradha – An Seabhac

Pádraig Ó Siochfhradha was born in the Gaeltacht near Dingle in Co Kerry in 1883. Pádraig Ó Siochfhradha went on to become an organiser for Conradh na Gaeilge, cycling all over the countryside to set up branches and promote the Irish language. As a writer, he took the pen-name ‘An Seabhac’, the Hawk, writing books […]

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Gaelic League Carnival Poster, 1912

The Gaelic League was founded in 1893 to revive the Irish language, which was falling increasingly out of use, especially in urban areas where English was dominant. The majority of its members were middle- and working-class English-speakers, and by 1908 it boasted roughly 600 branches, primarily in cities. One of the ways that the organisation […]

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#OTD in 1918 – Sinn Féin, the Irish Volunteers, Cumann na mBan and the Gaelic League were all proclaimed as illegal organisations by the Lord Lieutenant, Viscount French.

The proclamation stated that the proscribed organisations are dangerous and a ‘grave menace’ designed to ‘terrorise the peaceful and law-abiding subjects of His Majesty in Ireland’. It goes on to say that these associations ‘encourage and aid persons to commit crimes and promote and incite to acts of violence and intimidation and interfere with the […]

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#OTD in 1870 – Bartholemew (Batt) O’Connor is born in Brosna, East Kerry.

Although not a direct participant in the 1916 Rising, Batt O’Connor was sentenced to be shot by British authorities but was sent to Wandsworth Jail and later Frongoch internment camp in North Wales. During the War of Independence he ran a number of safe houses and hid funds and documents for the IRA. He was […]

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#OTD in 1867 – Eoin MacNeill, Gaelic scholar and co-founder of the Gaelic League, is born in Glenarm, Co Antrim.

Born in Co Antrim to middle-class Catholic parents, he was educated at St Malachy’s College, Belfast and became law clerk. In 1893, together with Douglas Hyde and others he founded the Gaelic League, an organisation devoted to the preservation of the Irish language, literature, and traditional culture. A brilliant historian and linguist, he was the […]

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