Ireland is a complex
verified dating ranging back 5,000 years to the Cede Fields of Mayo,
earlier. We have chosen many of the famous symbols of Ireland
to proudly decorate our products. The following descriptions are what
we find to
be simplified explanations for the symbols.
Features of Ireland and its Symbols
Map and Location
is an island off western Europe in the Northern
Atlantic Ocean. Ireland
divided country, with independent governments. . The Republic
(also called Ireland
or Eire) occupies 5/6th of the island
occupies 1/6th of the island and is a
part of the United Kingdom.
Capital(s) Republic of Ireland: Dublin. Northern Ireland:
English and Gaelic. Size: The Republic
covers 27,135 square
miles (70,280 sq km).Population: The
population of Ireland
is about 3,689,000 (as of 2000). Climate: Ireland
has a cool, often-cloudy climate.
flag is tricolor, and is made of three equal-sized rectangles of
and green. The flag is twice as wide as it is tall. The green side is
by the flagpole.
This flag was first used in 1848. Colors
in the flag represent the native population and religious beliefs in Ireland.Green: Signifies the
native people of Ireland
(most of whom are Roman Catholic). Orange:
the British supporters of William of Orange who settled in Northern
Ireland in the 17th
century (most of whom
are Protestant). White: White
the center of the flag and signifies peace between these two groups of
Commonly known as the Four
Green Fields of Ireland. Irelands
4 provinces. Connacht
is the north-western province
comprising the counties of Galway, Mayo, Sligo,
Leitrim and Roscommon. Leinster
is the eastern province
comprising the counties of Louth, Meath, Dublin,
Wicklow, Wexford, Kilkenny, Carlow, Laois, Offaly, Kildare, Westmeath
is the southernmost province
comprising the counties of Claire, Cork,
Kerry, Limerick, Tipperrary, and Waterford. Ulster forms one of the
historical provinces of Ireland.
Six of its Nine counties Antrim, Armagh, Derry,
Down, Fermanagh, and Tyrone, are known together as Northern
Ireland. Three counties Cavan,
Monaghan, are part of the Republic
Friendship, Lovea and Loyalty Symbol or Ireland
Claddagh design is said to originate from the Galway
Area, and the Aran Islands.The
Claddagh ring was originally worn by men, but later used
as a Marriage Ring for Men and Women. The symbol is comprised of 2
hands, a heart
and a crown.The hands symbolize the 2 parties involved. The heart is
seat of affection or love. And the crown perfection. So, a perfect
love between 2 parties.
translations to the Claddagh are: Friendship
(hands), Love (heart) and Loyalty (crown).
Harp Emblem: Its
Importance in Irish History
The harp symbol has
been recognized as the emblem of Ireland
since the 13th century. It was officially
adopted as Ireland’s
national symbol when the Irish Free State
was created in
1922. The most famous Harp of Ireland is the Brian Boru harp which is
The Boru harp is the
oldest surviving Irish harp, and is the model used for the State emblem.
The Trinity Symbol is an ancient Celtic design.
The Trinity emblem
is an ancient symbol for a high spiritual
dignity. In the Christian faith, it represents the Holy Trinity:
and Holy Spirit. The Trinity symbol has been inscribed in
stone, and also has
been colored. Red
for power, faith,
language and sacrifice. Blue
faith and trust. Green –color
the plants and trees, suggests hope of life eternal.
Celtic Cross is possibly the best known symbol of Early Christianity in
The High Celtic Cross is a self contained monument, and are as high as
They are generally made of sandstone, and their main characteristic
a circle connecting the arms. The rings around the high cross may have
symbol of the cosmos, and at the center is the Crucificition of Christ.
ring may have been a structural piece, to prevent the arms of the cross
snapping off. There are many decorations on the crosses many including
from the bible, while others feature animal Interlace, and scroll work.
at Monasterboise and Cross of Scriptures, Clonmacnoise are good
examples for the
traditional Celtic Cross.
Boru (c. 940-1014) The last of the High King’s to
out of the ruins of the Norse Age. He rebuilt ruined churches, built
sent overseas to replace lost books and artifacts and all that he
could to heal the wounds of the past two centuries of Norse pillage.
One of the
symbols most associated with Irieand is the Brian Boru Harp. This Harp
located in the Long room, at the Trinity College Library, in Dublin.
The harp is the national symbol of Ireland.
Irelands Areas of Historical Interest:
Interesting sites in Ireland
include: Bru na Boinne (Newgrange), Boyne
Ceide Fields, Clonmacnoise,
Croagh Patrick, Dun Aengus, Glendalough, Hill of Tara, Lough Derg,
Michael, Rock of Cashel.
Palace”: Ireland’s Stonehenge
One of Ireland’s
most spectacular archaeological sites is located in the Boyne
Valley in County
Meath. Newgrange, Dowth and Knowth
were built around the same time that Stonehenge was
erected in England.
These tombs were built around 3200 B.C., several centuries before the
pyramids of Egypt.
The exact reason these sites were built is unknown, but one of their
is that they may have been used as an ancient form of solar calendar.
The Newgrange site At Dowth, the light of the setting
sun of the solstice
illuminates one of the chambers. At Knowth, the rising sun of the
spring and autumn equinoxes
lights the eastern passage, while the setting sun may have caught the
passage those days.
Newgrange was designed to
sun during the
winter solstice (December 19-23), the rising sun shines thru a slit
entrance, and lights up the burial chamber for 17 minutes.
The monastery is on the east side of the River Shannon, in
what was then the Kingdom
but occupying a position so central it was the burial-place of many of
kings of Connaught as well as those
of Tara. The
site includes the ruins of a cathedral, eight churches
(10th-13th century), two round towers, three high crosses and a large
collection of early Christian grave slabs. The original high crosses
slabs are on display in the Visitor Centre. .
An early Christian monastic site founded by Saint Ciaran in the 6th
the banks of the River Shannon at the crossroads of Ireland in County
The Clonmacnoise location borders the three provinces of Connaught,
Hill of Tara
Though best known as the seat of the High
Kings of Ireland. 142 kings
to have reigned there in prehistoric and historic times. The Hill of
been an important site since the late Stone Age when a passage-tomb was
constructed there. Tara
was at the height of its power
as a political and religious centre in the early centuries after
Christ. Features of the Hill of Tara include the Mound of the
Hostages, the Stone of Destiny, and Ancient Standing Stones.
of Cashel (Tipperary)
This was the seat of kings and mediaeval
bishops for 900 years and
until the early 17th century. A spectacular group of stone
buildings set on an
outcrop of limestone in the Golden Vale. Features
include 12th century round tower,
High Cross and Romanesque Chapel, 13th century Gothic cathedral, 15th
Castle and the restored Hall of the Vicars Choral.
The original forbidding fortification of
kings of Munster.
Brian Ború was
crowned King of Munster
977 and he became High King of Ireland in 1002. He was the first high
exact universal and effective tribute from the other kings of Ireland.
Dun Aengus: Dún Aonghasa
(Dun Aengus - Angus' Fort)
The mysterious structure of Dun Aengus is
situated on the
western side of Inish Mór, one of the three Aran
(Oileáin Árainn), stone outcrops, in the Atlantic
thirty miles (48 kms) west of Galway
City. The islands, Inish
Mór, Inishmann and
Inisheer have some of Europe's
finest examples of
pre-historic and early Christian antiquities.Dun
Aengus is a vast fortification perched on the summit of
a hill that rises precipitously from the ocean to a height of 300 feet
meters). Half the site, consisting of three concentric enclosures, has
into the sea, but what is left makes a fascinating sight. The cliff
Cahercommoun in the Burren is Early Christian and Dún
Aonghasa is believed to
be much older. Dun
Aengus has been
estimated to have been built anywhere from 900BC to 500C.
This early Christian monastic site was founded by St. Kevin in the 6th
Set in a glaciated valley with two lakes, the monastic remains include
round tower, stone churches and decorated crosses.In
the 6th centaury St. Kevin founded a monastery and from
this grew a monastic city, which became famous as a centre of learning
throughout Europe. The spectacular Round
in the Monastic
stands an impressive 34m high
and 16m in circumference.The tower was
originally built as a bell tower and a place
of refuge when the monastery was attacked. There are many stone crosses
churches to see. As well as these magnificent remains, there is the
breathtaking scenery of the valley to enjoy.
a holy mountain in Ireland,
located in south Mayo, 5 miles from Westport,
and on Clew
It is a conical mountain that is said to be the place where St. Patrick
banished the snakes from Ireland.
Today it is a pilgrimage spot, where visitors from all over the world.
said that St. Patrick fasted for 40 days at the summit of the mountain.
Patrick is also known as the “Reek”, and on
“Reek Sunday”, the last Sunday in
July, thousands come to follow the steps of Patrick. Today, a church
the top of the “Reek”. It is said, that if you
climb Croagh Patrick three
times, you will have earned yourself a place in heaven.
may never know the exact influences that created the first true Celtic
it is surely have reflections of the Greek and Mediterranean
regions of Europe. Early Celtic art
and its abstract
designs are abstract derivatives of plant, vegetal, and animals of the
As Europe developed its fine
artwork, so did the Irish, creating
works in stone and metal. Recognizable designs include Irish spirals,
and tendrils. Jewelry is both classical and native, with special
including the Claddagh Ring, and Bronze Age Torcs.
is said to have been created Foynes Flying Boat Restaurant, Foynes, Co.
in 1943. Foynes was the European hub for transatlantic flights from
1945. This was an international passageway, promoting of Ireland’s
role in the development of passenger travel from Europe
to the United States
and vice versa during that period. The traditional recipe is that Hot
Coffee is poured into a warmed whiskey glass, sugar is added to taste
teaspoons), add one shot of Irish Whiskey, and stir. Then, a teaspoon
against the glass, bowl of the teaspoon is upside down, and a
double cream is poured over it so that it floats on the surface.
word, “Whiskey” itself is derived from the Gaelic, uisge
'water of life'. The Latin equivalent, aqua vitae,
was a term which was
commonly used throughout Europe to
describe the local
spirit. Whiskey is a spirit made by distilling fermented cereals, and
evolved simply as a means of using up barley which would otherwise have
ruined after a wet harvest. In Ireland
there are 3 names to remember, Jameson’s, John Powers Irish
Blend, and Bushmills,
Coleraine (the oldest malt in Ireland).
crack) is the unofficial catchphrase in Ireland
for having a good time. Craic or “Conversation” is
a word that means “lively
entertainment”, especially in music events. A well-known
Irish expression “Ceol
Agus Craic” means “Music and Great Times”.