Bartholomew Ryan: ‘I see the great poets like Yeats and Wordsworth and Fernando Pessoa as loafing heroes.’ Photograph: Luis Barra

The Loafing Heroes sing the poetry of WB Yeats and TS Eliot, and the subject matter of their songs ranges from Irish revolutionary heroes to the de(...)

Dancing Queen, Billie Barry photographed at her home in Marino, Dublin. Hundreds packed into the Church of St Vincent de Paul today for Ms Barry’s funeral who died on Tuesday. Photograph Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Billie Barry spent her life teaching people how to entertain so it was fitting that her funeral was a perfectly-choreographed celebration of music, so(...)

The news this month that Amtrak, the US rail operator, is to introduce writers-in-residence on its 15 long-distance routes reminds us of the li(...)

The new commander of the International Space Station, Col Douglas Wheelock, included a photograph of Ireland by night which he had previously taken from the window of the ISS.

The former commander of the International Space Station (ISS), Chris Hadfield, set the bar high for his successors when it came to taking an in(...)

Seamus Heaney did not confine himself to poetry. A respected critic, he also was a distinguished academic and his translations from Greek, Latin, Italian, Irish and Anglo-Saxon reflect the extent of his learning. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Born: April 13th, 1939; Died: August 30th, 2013The Nobel laureate Seamus Heaney, who has died aged 74, was described by Robert Lowell as “the most imp(...)

Mark Thatcher speaks to the press outside the home of former British Prime Minister, Baroness Margaret Thatcher  in London last week. Photograph: Gerry

A single, half-muffled bell will toll as the funeral cortege draws up to St Paul’s. Fourteen Chelsea Pensioners will line the steps as t(...)