Hello, good morning, and happy birthday Mr President. No, not the one who blows more than Hurricane Irma. I refer to the real President. He who was th(...)

Micheál Martin: he dominates Fianna Fáil but does not control it absolutely. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

For most of his leadership of Fianna Fáil, Micheál Martin privately accepted that he would be the first leader of his party never to serve as taoiseac(...)

 ‘Class and ideology have clearly always been central to Irish housing policy.’ Photograph: Ben Birchall/PA Wire

On April 29th, 1949, Timothy Murphy, the Labour Party minister for local government, died suddenly while he was addressing an interparty meeting in Fe(...)

British ambassador to Ireland Lord Rugby, Irish president Seán T Kelly, British prime minister Clement Atlee and presidential secretary Michael McDunphy in 1948

Over the last year new attention has focused on the idea of Irish unity. Sinn Féin has called for a Border poll, reunification has become a subject of(...)

Nazis: Hermann Goering  with Adolf Hitler in 1937. Photograph: Ullstein Bild via Getty

A former Irish diplomat sold wine to Adolf Hitler’s deputy, Hermann Göring, and other Nazis during the second World War, a new book suggests. Count (...)

 Pauline Sugrue in her kitchen-cookery classrom: “We were keen not to interfere with the house too much – what’s the point in having a modernised old house?” Photograph: Trevor McBride

Imagine learning to cook in an Edwardian bank building where the kitchen is the original banking hall and the old safe cleverly doubles as the cool sp(...)

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at Queen’s University Belfast: It is embarrassing when the leader of a government seems to be ignorant of the reality that there is already an economic border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic. Photograph: Liam McBurney/PA

The DUP’s decision to support the UK leaving the European Union was based on principle and practicality. On principle, the DUP had opposed joining in (...)

Eamon de Valera speaking in 1969. Photograph: The Irish Times

Eamon de Valera was never a republican, and his support and that of other Irish nationalist leaders for an Irish republic during the War of Independen(...)

Sinead Burke: she wanted a term in Irish for “little person” that was more appropriate for the 21st century. Photograph: Sara Freund

There’s no word in Irish for “eejit”. It’s true that we have amadáns, pleidhces and breallaires, but the word eejit has certain untranslatable qualiti(...)

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin  has consistently rejected the notion of dealing with Sinn Féin and has a clear distaste for the party. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

In the quiet days of the summer recess politicians have a bit of time to ponder the longer term. One of issues in the minds of many this July is the n(...)