Who’s bringing the horse to France? A history of Ireland in 100 questions

Riddle me this

1 Who made the world?

2 Do you reject Satan and all his works?

3 And all his empty promises?

4 How long has it been since your last confession?


5 For what died the sons of Róisín?

6 For what flowed Ireland’s blood in rivers?

7 To hell or to Connacht?

8 Who dares to speak of ‘98?

9 Oh, Paddy dear and did you hear the news that’s goin’ round?

10 I met with Napper Tandy and he took me by the hand/He said: “How’s dear old Ireland and how does she stand?”

11 Cad a dhéanfaimid feasta gan adhmad?

12 What have I now? (said the fine old woman)

13 And is the poor man dead, he cried? (“He died an hour ago.”)

14 And still they gazed, and still the wonder grew/That one small head could carry all he knew.

15 Will ye go lassie go?

16 What have I in this wide world but these four bones?

17 What would you do if the kettle boiled over?

18 What would you do only fill it again?

19 What would you do if the cow ate the clover?

20 What would you do only set it again?

21 An bhfuil cead agam dul amach?

22 Beef or salmon?

23 What’s the crack?

24 Is it a boy or a child?

25 The Irish question.

26 The Land question.

27 The language question.

28 Is it yerself that’s in it?

29 Why should I blame her that she filled my days with misery?

30 Or that she would of late have taught to ignorant men most violent ways?

31 Or hurled the little streets upon the great?

32 Was there a second Troy for her to burn?

33 Whose round is it?

34 What’ll you have?

35 Have yis no homes to go to?

36 What did he die of so young, Gretta? Consumption, was it?

37 Are you right there, Michael?

38 I believe that when writing a wish you expressed/To know how the fine ladies of London were dressed.

39 What need you, being come to sense…?

40 And what, God help us, could they save?

41 Was it for this the wild geese spread/The grey wing upon every tide?

42 For this that all that blood was shed/For this Edward Fitzgerald died?

43 Did that play of mine send out/Certain men the English shot?

44 Was it needless death after all?

45 And what if excess of love bewildered them till they died?

46 Who shot Michael Collins?

47 Who shot JR?

48 How’s she cuttin’?

49 Are you dancin’?

50 Are you askin’?

51 Will we go into the field, Bridie?

52 How would you like to be buried with my people?

53 How are things in Glocamorra?

54 O chestnut tree, great rooted blossomer/Are you the leaf, the blossom, or the bowl?

55 O body swayed to music, O brightening glance/How can we know the dancer from the dance?

56 Will we go? (“We can’t go”)

57 Why not? (“We’re waiting for Godot”)

58 Why are we here, that is the question?

59 Is it about a bicycle?

60 Phwat is yer nam?

61 Was it the drink that ruined him, or was it the column? (Hugh Kenner on Flann O’Brien)

62 What colour was [your wife’s] honeymoon nightie? (Gay Byrne 1966)

63 Who put the figs in the fig rolls?

64 You and whose army?

65 Who owns them hungry hills, that the waterhen and snipe must have forsaken?

66 Who owns that half a rood of rock/Surrounded by our pitchfork-armed claims?

67 Who left the immersion on?

68 Will you roll it there, Roisin?

69 And still I wonder, is there a goal in this game? (Micheál Ó Hehir, Sept 1982)

70 Where’s your fucking pride?

71 Who owns them boots beside the bed where my oul’ boots should be?

72 - 77: Seven Drunken nights, questions 2 - 7.

78 Who here really believes that we can win the war through the ballot box?

79 But will anyone here object if, with a ballot paper in this hand and an Armalite in the other, we take power in Ireland?

80 How’s it goin’ there everybody/From Cork, New York, Dundalk, Gortahork, and Glenamaddy.

81 Anyone for the last few choc-ices?

82 Who put the ball in the England net? (Rayo, Rayo)

83 Who put the ball in the England net? (Rayo, Rayo Houghton)

84 Who’s bringing the horse to France?

85 What’s another year?

86 Why me?

87 How long?

88 How long must we sing this song?

89 How long?

90 How lo-o-o-o-o-ong?

91 Did you have to let it linger?

92 Whatever happened to that old song/To all those little girls and boys?

93 People want to know where the Taoiseach sleeps at night.

94 Will we get a receipt?

95 Will we fuck!

96 But, are you happy? (Labour election slogan 2007)

97 When did you leave the IRA?

98 Story, bud?

99 And what rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

100 But are you a Catholic or a Protestant atheist?