Ray Burke

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The Lord Deputy of Ireland, Viscount Grandison, ordered a sworn inquiry, which began in Galway in early February 1621

Exactly 400 years before Brexit, a French ship sailed into Galway Bay in mid-winter 1620-21 and caused an international dispute that vexed the diploma(...)

Samuel Johnson: his biographer James Boswell quotes him as telling an Irish friend in 1779: “Do not make a union with us, Sir. We should unite with you only to rob you.”

‘Worth seeing? Yes; but not worth going to see.” Dr Samuel Johnson’s quip about the Giant’s Causeway in Co Antrim still invites a chuckle , even if th(...)

Large clusters of parliamentarians are disaffected, for a variety of reasons, with Taoiseach Micheál Martin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

If you Google “shaky start” and “Irish politics”, the inevitable dates crop up: 1997; 2011; 2017; and 2020. What unites them is this: new governments (...)

Taoiseach Micheál Martin: A significant minority now favour an alternative path, and with it, an alternative leader. Photograph:  Brian Lawless/PA

Political life goes through cycles, with times of heightened drama followed by periods that are taciturn and mundane. Over four months, the negotiati(...)

Sean O’Rourke: ‘I cracked it in the end and now I’m walking away.’ Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

When he opens his front door in Killiney, Co Dublin, Sean O’Rourke bows to me instead of shaking my hand. “That’s what Charlie Haughey used to like hi(...)

Gay Byrne: he was never sick, he never missed a show for a funeral, never let emotion overcome him. Photograph: Alan Betson

Every person he met, every colleague he worked with and every issue he raised benefited from Gay Byrne’s presence, input and wisdom. His absence now l(...)

Former minister  Ray Burke arriving at the Flood tribunal in Dublin Castle, November  2001. Photograph: Matt Kavanagh

On building sites, there used to be a tradition of sending the callow young apprentice on his first day to ask for the rubber hammer and the glass nai(...)

French singer Severine reads the Sunday Independent newspaper in her hotel on 4th April, the day after she won the 1971 Eurovision Song Contest with the song ‘Un banc, un arbre, une rue’ for Monaco in Dublin, Ireland on 3rd April 1971. Photograph: Rolls Press/Popperfoto/Getty Images

Revisiting another facet of the colourful history of print journalism in Ireland would hardly justify even a faint cry of “Hold the front page”. At le(...)

Women draw tickets during the Irish Hospitals Sweep Hurdle draw (sweepstakes) at Ballsbridge in Dublin in January 1986.Photograph: Paddy Whelan

Margaret Thatcher told Peter Mandelson “you can’t trust the Irish; they’re all liars”. That was a bit harsh, maybe. But we’re certainly not above the (...)

In his report, Mr Justice Peter Charleton will rule on evidence that has been heard as to whether then Garda commissioner Martin Callinan smeared Sgt Maurice McCabe. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

A number of serious allegations against former Garda commisssioner Nóirín O’Sullivan and others have been strongly challenged by the evidence heard ov(...)

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