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Mon, 22 Jun 2009
Here and here about, there are over a hundred things you probably don't know about Ireland.

wee leprechaun

• Ireland's largest church is St Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin?

• The Popularity of Patrick as a Christian name in Ireland is due to the great 17th century general, Patrick Sarsfield, not our patron saint?

• The word νochtar (eek-tur) literally means lower part and is often used for the youngest child in an Irish family?

• George Bernard Shaw bequeathed one third of his estate to the National Gallery in Dublin, claiming that he received his education there?

• Guinness's fermenting vessel ferments 2,304,000 pints at one brewing?

• According to old custom, a piece of candle, a coin and a small quantity of wine or spirits should be placed next to someone who has died? The candle was to give the deceased light, the coin was to pay the fare over the river of death, and the liquor was to sustain him or her on their journey.

• Mass has been celebrated every Sunday at Ballintubber Abbey in Co. Mayo since 1216?

• Swallowing a live frog was an old Irish cure for a stomach ache?

• St. James's Gate Brewery is built on the site where, since medieval times, Dubliners held an annual drinking festival every 25th July to celebrate the feastday of St. James?

• Emmett Square in Birr, Co. Offaly, marks the centre of Ireland?

• Dublin was originally called Dubh Linn meaning Black Pool? The pool to which the name referred is the oldest known in Northern Europe and currently forms the centre-piece of the penguin enclosure in Dublin Zoo.

• Chieftains in medieval Ulster went out of their way to marry Scotswomen because their dowries consisted of axe-wielding galloglass mercenaries? When Turlough Luineach O'Neill married Lady Agnes MacDonald of Kintyre in 1568, she brought 10,000 troops with her.

• Ireland's smallest church is at Portbraden in Co. Antrim? Only ten feet long by six feet wide, the structure is dedicated to St. Gobhnan - the patron saint of builders. (huh?!)

• Mulgrave Street in Limerick, which contains two hospitals, a prison and a lunatic asylum, is known as 'Calamity Avenue' by the locals?

• The sinister sounding Bloody Foreland in County Donegal owes its name to its magnificent sunsets?

• Every spring, more than twenty million eels swim into the River Bann to breed?

• In the village of Ballyporeen, Co, Tipperary, there's a pub called The Ronald Reagan Bar?

• Charles Stuart Parnell was known as the Uncrowned King of Ireland?
Posted 17:28

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