Higgins signs 'Great Book of Ireland'


President Michael D Higgins has praised Ireland’s artistic community for helping create the Great Book of Ireland, as he signed his own poetic contribution at a ceremony at University College Cork, writes Barry Roche.

The vellum manuscript compiled between 1989 and 1991 to raise money for two charities features contributions from nine composers, 121 artists and 143 poets, including Nobel laureates Samuel Beckett, Derek Walcott and Seamus Heaney.

Heaney, along with fellow poet Nuala Ní Dhomnaill, were among those who attended the ceremony at the Aula Maxima in UCC.

Mr Higgins said the book was “ a magnificent work of art, the shared legacy of some of our greatest poets and artists alongside new emerging talents, combined with the work of nine composers and a very talented calligrapher; imagery and words flowing together in harmony, neither subservient to the other”.