Patrick Kavanagh

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At least sometimes, the folk cures had roots in biology or chemistry

Further to the subject of cures, which we were discussing yesterday, Wicklow-born reader Mattie Lennon reminds me that certain Irish families used to (...)

Mourners at the funeral of Eileen Battersby in Drogheda at St Peter’s Church, Drogheda, Co Louth.  Photograph: Donall Farmer

Literary critic, author and journalist Eileen Battersby was a “brilliant”, “beguiling”, “beautiful”, “courageous”, “dynamic” romantic who lived by her(...)

Patrick Kavanagh went into Hodges Figgis and started to throw books around the shop in a rage that  The Green Fool  was not in the window. Photograph: The Wiltshire Collection, National Library of Ireland

Patrick Kavanagh went on the rampage in 1938 when his childhood memoir The Green Fool was not stocked in the window of some of Dublin’s best known boo(...)

‘Like me, the lad from England had a big interest in both Patrick Kavanagh and Flann O’Brien (above)’.

In Dublin on Friday night, I stepped into a thronged O’Neill’s Pub on Suffolk Street in hopes of watching Ulster’s European Rugby Cup match. It was a (...)

“Turkey money” was long a staple of Irish rural life in general, a well-timed seasonal supplement to whatever else could be earned on a farm during the year.

To most people now, a “cleaver” is a deadly instrument, typically seen (you hope) in the hands of a butcher. But the word used to have another, very d(...)

Although there appear to have been three different Patrick Sheehans wounded during the Siege of Sebastopol, the one in the ballad was probably from Ennistymon, Co Clare. Lithograph of the Siege of Sebastopol/Universal History Archive/UIG via Getty Images Lithograph of the Siege of Sebastopol. The sans Pareil and The Agamemnon engaging Fort Constantine. Lithograph by A. L. Morel-Fatio. Dated 1854. (Photo by: Universal History Archive/UIG via Getty Images)

His name was indeed Patrick Sheehan, and at least in the famous ballad, his age was “34”.  But this last detail may have been influenced by the r(...)

Julie Chance (left) and Jane Arnison

When did you last cry? Jane: Last night, after I had a fight with one of my best friends. Julie: Me too. What artist do you feel particularly conn(...)

Patrick Kavanagh: “Through a chink too wide there comes in no wonder.”
In a word: ‘Poem’

After his Fianna Fáil/Labour coalition government fell in November 1994, the then taoiseach, Albert Reynolds, commented: “It’s the little things that (...)

Europe’s bread basket – southern Russia and Ukraine – was cut off by the Crimean conflict

In a second-hand shop recently, I bought a copy of a remarkable book that passed me by when first published, in 2007. It’s called Strong Farmer: the M(...)

Delighted Monaghan fans at Pearse Park, Salthill celebrate the  victory over Galway which earned the county a semi-final place against Tyrone. Photograph:  Laszlo/Geczo

I don’t know what Paris in 1968 felt like, or Berlin after the wall came down. But last Saturday night in Salthill must have been the Monaghan GAA equ(...)

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