Catching up with modern Ireland: May

Ireland is slowly emerging from COVID-19 lockdown. Outdoor dining for pubs and restaurants resumes June 7; indoor service is set to begin in early July. Fáilte Ireland, the national tourism development agency, launched a €4 million “Keep Discovering” marketing campaign to drive domestic holidays and help to reboot the industry. Foreign visitors still face restrictions, […]

A Journey In Ireland, 1921, Revisited: Murdered mayors

Novelist and journalist Wilfrid Ewart traveled through Ireland from mid-April to early May 1921. His dispatches for London newspapers were later collected and revised in the book, ‘A Journey In Ireland, 1921.’ Previous installments of this centenary series are collected at American Reporting of Irish Independence *** Ewart arrived in Limerick on April 27, less than […]

Catching up with modern Ireland: May

I’ll be reducing the number of new posts and republishing some of my earlier work over the summer as I work on larger projects for the fall and beyond. Stay safe. Here’s the May roundup:   At least 1,652 people have died of COVID-19 in the Republic of Ireland, with another 522 in Northern Ireland. Both […]

Remembering Oliver Plunkett’s May 1920 beatification

A century ago, Oliver Plunkett (1625-1681) was beatified in Rome, the penultimate step to his canonization as a saint, which occurred in 1975. As the Catholic Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, the County Meath-born Plunkett was the last of 22 martyrs in the “Popish Plot,” a conspiracy theory run amok in England’s […]

Catching up with modern Ireland: May

I’ve been away most of the month working on long-term projects. Thanks for supporting our archived content. Here’s the monthly roundup. MH U.S. President Donald Trump is scheduled to meet Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar on June 6 at Shannon Airport. Trump wanted the meeting at his Doonbeg golf resort in County Clare, where he will […]

May 1919: Irish-American commission visits Ireland

In May 1919, the American Commission on Irish Independence arrived in Dublin. Before long, all hell broke loose in London and Paris. The ACII was a non-government delegation of three prominent Irish-Americans formed in the wake of the February 1919 Irish Race Convention in Philadelphia. The trio of labor lawyer Frank P. Walsh; former Illinois […]

Catching up with modern Ireland: May

Irish voters overturned a 35-year-old constitutional abortion ban by a decisive two thirds margin. More about that at the bottom of this post. First, a quick look at some other Irish news in May, from both sides of the Atlantic: Ireland moved to sixth place from ninth place in the E.U. Digital Economy and Society Index. The improvement […]

Pope Francis to visit Ireland in 2018, maybe the North

Pope Francis will visit Ireland in 2018, according to statements by Taoiseach Enda Kenny, who has just visited the Pontiff in Rome. Catholic bishops in the Republic of Ireland had extended an invitation to Pope Francis to visit Dublin in August 2018 for the World Meeting of Families. The BBC reports that some Northern Ireland political leaders […]

Troubles at St. Patrick’s College, Maynooth

Catholic Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin has decided to remove three seminarians from his dioceses at St. Patrick’s College, Maynooth, due to “an atmosphere of strange goings-on” at the national seminary. Martin is transferring the trainee priests to the Irish Pontifical College in Rome, according to The Irish Times. In May, The Irish Catholic reported on […]

How a 19th century anti-Irish Catholic voting law helped unseat modern Bangladeshi Muslim mayor near London

Earlier this year an English judge used an obscure section of 19th century election law to unseat the mayor of Tower Hamlets, a borough of London. The Guardian tells how the term “undue spiritual influence” was passed down from the 1880s, when it was intended “specifically to constrain the influence of the Roman Catholic clergy […]