#OTD in Irish History – 21 August:

1693 – Death of Jacobite and soldier, Patrick Sarsfield. Born in Lucan, Co Dublin, he was created the first Earl of Lucan and belonged to an Anglo-Norman family long settled in Ireland. His father Patrick Sarsfield married Anne, daughter of Rory (Roger) O’Moore, who organised the Irish Rebellion of 1641. The family was of Norman […]

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#OTD in 1919 – Motion passed by Dáil that an Oath of Allegiance (to the Republic) should be taken by all members and officials of Dáil Éireann, and all Irish Volunteers.

Ernie O’Malley says that with this oath the Irish Volunteers became the Irish Republican Army (IRA). At a meeting of Dáil Éireann (the Irish Parliament not recognised by Britain), Secretary of Defence, Cathal Brugha called for all TDs to swear allegiance to the new parliament. Every person and every one of those bodies undermentioned must […]

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#OTD in 1981 – Twenty-seven-year-old Michael “Mickey” Devine, from the Creggan in Derry dies on the 60th day of his hunger strike.

Fuar siad bás ar son Saoirse na hÉireann. Mickey Devine was the third INLA Volunteer to join the H-Block hunger strikers and he was the last of the group to give their lives in order to retain their status as political prisoners. Twenty-seven-year-old Mickey Devine, from the Creggan in Derry city, was the third INLA […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 20 August:

535 – Death of Mochta of Louth; he was a disciple of St. Patrick. Also known as Maucteus, he was, like Patrick, a native of Britain. The Annals of Ulster date his death to 535, which points to him being considerably younger than Patrick, who had died in 493. He is known to have written […]

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#OTD in 1504 – Battle of Knockdoe/Battle of Axe Hill

The Battle of Knockdoe took place on 19 August 1504 at Knockdoe, in the Parish of Lackagh, Co Galway, between two Anglo-Irish lords—Gerald FitzGerald, Earl of Kildare, the Lord Deputy of Ireland, and Ulick Fionn Burke, Lord of Clanricarde—along with their respective Irish allies. The cause was a dispute between Maelsechlainn mac Tadhg Ó Cellaigh, […]

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#OTD in 1930 – Birth of Frank McCourt in Brooklyn, NY.

Writer and educator Francis “Frank” McCourt was born on 19 August 1930, in Brooklyn, New York, as the eldest of seven children. McCourt’s father, Malachy, worked odd jobs while his mother, Angela, worked to raise the children. The family frequently struggled to make ends meet and, after a long stint of unemployment during the Depression, […]

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#OTD in 1907 – A memorial arch is dedicated at St Stephens Green Dublin in honour of the Irish soldiers who died fighting for “King and country” in the Boer war.

Five years on from the war, the Fusiliers’ Arch was unveiled in the heart of Dublin, as a testament to the actions of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers in South Africa. While the war ended in a British victory, it was a bloody and costly one. In financial terms, a war that would supposedly be over […]

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#OTD in 1876 – The ship Catalpa arrives in the U.S. with Irish Fenian prisoners rescued from Australia.

The “Fremantle Six” were Irish political prisoners who made an audacious escape from the notorious British prison in West Australia aboard the U.S. whaling ship “Catalpa” in 1876. Captain Anthony and the Catalpa arrive at Rockingham beach near Fremantle to rendezvous with the escaped prisoners; after a fierce confrontation with the Georgette, an armed British […]

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#OTD in Irish History – 19 August:

1504 – Battle of Knockdoe/Battle of Axe Hill. After Ulick Burke of Clanricard seizes Galway city, Edward Fitzgerald, the Earl of Kildare, goes to Connacht and defeats Burke at Knockdoe. This is the largest battle ever fought between Irishmen, with 10,000 participants and 2,000 fatalities; however, most of the fighting is done by gall óglach […]

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Revival of the Irish Wolfhound

The Irish wolfhound is a persistent symbol of ancient Celtic nobility and integrity. By the middle of the 19th century the original Irish wolfhound had all but disappeared, along with its foe the Irish wolf, and no one really had a clear idea of what it had looked like in its heyday. Around this time, […]

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