Former student Declan Kiberd (above)  described Michael Smith as “an audacious Latin teacher who treated every text as written from felt experience and not just as a basis for learning language”. Photograph: Alan Betson

The poet Michael Smith has died in Dublin at the age of 72. As well as his own poetry, most of which is located in the working class Dublin of his ch(...)

Able Seaman Des Branigan who served on the Irish Poplar, one of the Irish Shipping vessels,  in front of the company flag at a reunion to mark the 30th anniversary of the closure of the company.  Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Three decades after the controversial liquidation of Irish Shipping Ltd, former officers, crew and staff paid tribute to the role of the State compan(...)

In 1982 Brian Farrell presided over the first ever televised leaders’ debate  in a general election, between the then heads of Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael, Charles Haughey  and Garret Fitzgerald  respectively. 4:23

Brian Farrell made an enormous contribution to Irish political life through his work as a broadcaster and an academic.Nobody else before or since has (...)

 Ivan Yates: irreverent, driven and witty. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Ivan Yates became a TD aged just 21, having been elected at 19 to Enniscorthy Urban District Council. He was minister for agriculture in his 30s, and (...)

“I kind of do the work as opposed to saying what I want to be.” Frances Fitzgerald, Minister for Justice, visiting the Learning for Life centre in Esker Hill, Lucan. Photograph: Alan Betson

‘She does ‘mumsy’ well”, murmurs an observer, watching the local TD and Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald, drive off after declari(...)

Former PD leader Des O’Malley at the launch of his memoir Conduct Unbecoming in the Mansion House in Dublin. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Des O’Malley can be considered a very significant and influential figure in modern Irish politics. He was a young minister for justice at a time of tu(...)

TK Whitaker: realised at an early stage that a reliance on tradition and “high-sounding cliches” would not serve this State’s maturation. Photograph: David Sleator / The Irish Times

How do you write the biography of the man many regard as Ireland’s greatest public servant without it being a gushing hagiography? With considerable d(...)

US President Barack Obama receives a bowl of shamrock from Taoiseach Enda Kenny during a St Patrick’s Day reception at the White House, a fixed annual privilege granted to no other world leader.  Photograph: Chris Kleponis/ Reuters

‘Hello,” I said. “My name is Conor O’Clery. I am the international business editor of The Irish Times of Dublin, Ireland’s leading newspaper, calli(...)

Senator Marc MacSharry snapped at Senator Mary White, when interrupted:
“You’re an ignorant goat.” Photograph: Bryan O’Brien/The Irish Times

In recent years, budget night in the Dáil bar has been a rather dull and subdued affair.The place used to be heaving during Fianna Fáil’s heyday. It g(...)

At the signing of the Anglo-Irish Agreement in 1985: Peter Barry, Dick Spring, Garret FitzGerald, Margaret Thatcher, Geoffrey Howe and Tom King

Declassified state papers released today reveal mixed and even negative feelings towards the impending Anglo-Irish Agreement in 1985 on the part of t(...)