IN THIS ISSUE
~~~~~ Keep us Free!
~~~~~ New Free resources at the site
~~~~~ News Snaps from Ireland
~~~~~ IrishNation.com - New Online Shop and Free Email Account
~~~~~ Irish Halloween Traditions
~~~~~ Cara Irish Penpals Success Story!
~~~~~ Ode to Dal-Riada by James M. McDonald
~~~~~ Gaelic Phrases of the Month
~~~~~ Readers Noticeboard
~~~~~ Shamrock Site of the Month: IAVI
~~~~~ Searcher Site of the Month: Irish at Home and Abroad
~~~~~ Monthly free competition result
To celebrate the second anniversary of the site we are
proud to be able to offer you a freebie that you can use
to display your Irish allegiance, an email account where
you choose the name: firstname.lastname@example.org
We had a great time exploring New York and Gettysburg on
our vacation - thanks to those of you who emailed with
advice and suggestions. Gettysburg was really terrific. We
hired a volunteer guide who traveled with us in our car
around the battlegrounds and he was an invaluable font of
knowledge and insight into this fascinating subject. We
also got to see the famous Celtic Cross monument that is
quite near the 'Wheatfield' battleground. If you ever get
a chance to visit Gettysburg then I highly recommend it.
As always we are delighted to receive suggestions for items
that should be covered at the site and are still working on
previous suggestions that include Irish Music and Cinema
and Irish Recipes.
PLEASE - send this newsletter on to your friends or
relatives who you think are interested in Ireland. By doing
this you are helping to keep us 'free'.
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in the next edition? Email to:
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......but you'll be missing out!
If I can be of any assistance to you then please let me know,
all the very best from Ireland,
And HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!!!!!
(I can still remember eating Colcannon when I was young,
and I hate cabbage!)
KEEP US FREE!
You can help us to continue supplying free resources and
information from Ireland and it won't cost you a penny!
Do the 1,2
1. Sign up for more great free info:
2. Register for a free chance to win US$500,000:
NEW FREE RESOURCES AT THE SITE
There is so much information on the web that it is very
easy to get lost! We have tried to lay out our site in the
easiest possible way and have set up a site map where you
can access all of our resources:
Here are some of the items you may have missed:
* The 100 most popular boys and girls names in Ireland
* Play Hangman online
* Kids games to teach them about Ireland
* The meaning of the symbols on Irish Family Crests
* Irish Wedding Traditions
NEW COATS OF ARMS ADDED TO THE GALLERY:
The following 49 coats of arms images and family history
details have been added to the Gallery:
A: Athey, Avery, Aylward, McAlinden
B: Beckett, Blaney, Brannigan, Brewer, Burnett
C: Coakley, Conley, Connaughty, Cosgrove, McCloskey
E: Elder, McEachen
F: Fairchild, Francis
G: Grady, Gray, McGahagin, McGinley
H: Hackett, Harmon, Heaslip, Henehan, Hoban, Hooley
K: Keys, Kingman
L: Lawless, Lundy
M: Magauran, Mernagh, Morrison
P: Paterson, Pell
S: Scullin, Shank, Sheppard, Stanley
T: Toland, McTigue
W: Watson, Watters, West, Willman
View the Gallery here:
We now have over 20,000 worldwide names available.
Get your Coat of Arms Print, Screensaver, Watch, T-Shirt
Transfer, Clock or Claddagh Ring for your name at:
NEWS SNAPS FROM IRELAND
MAJOR UNREST AT AER LINGUS
There have been widespread disruptions to Aer Lingus
flights including the complete cancellation of an entire
days schedule because of industrial action on a number of
different fronts. Hot on the heels of the work stoppage by
Cabin Crew has been a number of stoppages by baggage
handlers. 1400 Clerical staff and catering and bar staff
are set to join in whilst the Pilot's union have also
warned of impending action.
Reports of massive delays in the airport terminal which
is in the midst of new construction works was bad news
for the Airline which estimated that it loses IR£2 Million
every day that their flights are grounded.
There is quite good public support for the action by the
cabin crew (flight attendants), some of whom are earning as
little as IR£15,000 annually (about US$16,000). At one time
the post of 'air hostess' was one of the most prestigious
that an Irish female could aspire to but, akin to what has
happened in the nursing profession, it is now very much the
employee who can pick and choose their employment, especially
in an economy that is suffering severe staff shortages in
TAXI SERVICE IS DE-REGULATED
The Irish Taxi service is in crisis. The number of people
allowed to operate a Taxi is limited by the number of
licenses available. The Taxi industry has been very
successful in keeping the number of licenses available to
a minimum making them worth as much as IR£80,000 each
(about US$90,000). The result has been a monopoly situation
and hour-long queues for the scare Taxis at peak times.
This situation is about to change. A decision by Justice
Roderick Murphy has turned him into something of a hero. He
has decided that the limit on the number of Taxi licenses
is an affront to fair competition and affects the rights of
individual citizens to work in the industry as well as
affecting the ability of the public to avail of Taxi
services. He ruled that the Government Minister with
responsibility for the Taxi industry does not have the
right to limit the number of licenses. He further made
himself unpopular with the Taxi-men by stating that the new
entrants to the business should not be disadvantaged as a
form of compensation to those already in the profession.
It is likely that this judgment will be used to deregulate
the Bus industry and remove the strangle-hold that CIE has
on the country's under-fire transport services.
As for the Taxi-men, it is expected that they will blockade
the city with their cars, a tactic that they have used in
the past. However, in the face of zero public support and
the rule of law, it seems unlikely that they will be able
to prevent the tide of progress.
WHO WANTS TO BE AN IRISH MILLIONAIRE?
The ever popular format for turning ordinary citizens into
overnight millionaires by answering 15 questions has finally
hit Ireland. The opening programme was hosted by Gay Byrne
and was viewed by over 1.2 Million people, representing
nearly three quarters of all people who were watching
television in Ireland at the time.
The telephone lines have been buzzing as well as contestants
from all over the country dial into the 58 pence per minute
telephone hotline to hear Gay ask them a question that might
just land them on the show.
The huge gains made by TV3, the rival independent Irish
television station, have been to some extent clawed back
with this success but this channel war is only getting
RTE1, Network 2 and TnaG are the State run channels in
Ireland whilst TV3 is the main Irish independent channel.
Irish viewers pay a monthly premium of about IR£15 to
NTL to receive BBC1, BBC2, UTV, Channel4, Sky One, Sky
News and Eurosport as well as the Irish channels over
its cable network. Some viewers prefer to receive erratic
quality reception for free by erecting their own TV aerial.
EURO CURRENCY PLUMMETS AS US DOLLAR AND IRISH PUNT NEAR PARITY
One US Dollar was worth about 96 pence at one stage (an
Irish pound/punt = 100 pence). If you ever thought about
visiting or investing in Ireland then now is the time to do
it. Three years ago the dollar was worth about 66 pence.
Great for visitors to Ireland. Not so great for the Irish
who travel outside Europe.
Part of the blame for the fall in the Euro (and consequently
the Irish currency) has been placed at the door of Wim
Duisenberg, the president of the European Central Bank who
is looking increasingly under pressure, much like the
One Solitary Medal for Ireland:
Sonia O'Sullivan, the Cobh born athlete achieved Ireland's
only medal at the Sydney Olympics by finishing second in
the 5000 Metres final. It was a memorable moment for the
athlete who has previously tasted European and World
Championships glory but it would have been a tragedy if her
fantastic career had not been punctuated by an Olympic medal
of some color. Sonia O'Sullivan and Michele Smith (who won
4 medals in the Atlanta Olympics) are regarded as the
finest sportswomen that Ireland has ever produced.
Excellent start for the boys in green:
Mick McCarthy's Irish Soccer team could scarcely have
expected a better start to the qualifying stages of their
World Cup Campaign.
Only the winner of the group will qualify automatically for
the finals that are to be held in Japan and Korea in 2002,
whilst the runner-up will get a dreaded play-off chance.
Ireland drew 2-2 in Holland having led the Dutch by 2 goals
with 20 minutes remaining. They then traveled to Portugal
and held the Euro 2000 semi-finalists 1-1 with a late
equaliser by Matt Holland of Ipswich Town.
Four days later a packed Landsdowne Road saw Mark Kinsella
and Richard Dunne continue Ireland's excellent progress with
a fully deserved 2-0 victory. With seven matches to go there
is real scope for optimism but Irish fans will not get
carried away! - They remember the last minute goal in
Macedonia which broke their hearts, costing them a place
in Euro 2000 in France.
IRISHNATION.COM - NEW ONLINE SHOP AND FREE EMAIL ACCOUNT
FREE EMAIL ACCOUNT
Okay, this is your chance to get a really memorable email
address. This free resource has NOT yet been made available
at the main site as we try to give our newsletter
subscribers first dibs at the goodies!
You can now get an email address ending in @irishnation.com
that you can use to check your email whilst away from your
PC. This is an online service. You do not need to have
access to your email program (Outlook, Eudora, etc.) to
So if you are away from home, on the road, on vacation or
doing business sway from your PC then this is a great means
of communication AND you get the chance to register the
name you want. You choose: YOURNAME@irishnation.com
NEW ONLINE STORE
We have added a shopping cart system to our new site and
dozens of new products including:
* Family Crest Prints (singles and doubles)
* Irish Paintings on Canvas
* Customised Stationery
* T-Shirt Transfers
* Irish Stamp Packs
* Irish Prints
* First Name History Scrolls
* Claddagh Jewelry
............and lots more
Get your Christmas Shopping started and get your new
email account at:
IRISH HALLOWEEN TRADITIONS
The Celts celebrated Halloween as Samhain, 'All Hallowtide'
- the 'Feast of the Dead', when the dead revisited the
mortal world. The celebration marked the end of Summer
and the start of the Winter months.
During the eighth century the Catholic Church designated
the first day of November as 'All Saints Day ('All Hallows')
- a day of commemoration for those Saints that did not have
a specific day of remembrance. The night before was known
as 'All Hallows Eve' which, over time, became known as
Here are the most notable Irish Halloween Traditions:
Colcannon for Dinner: Boiled Potato, Curly Kale (a cabbage)
and raw Onions are provided as the traditional Irish
Halloween dinner. Clean coins are wrapped in baking paper
and placed in the potato for children to find and keep.
The Barnbrack Cake: The traditional Halloween cake in
Ireland is the barnbrack which is a fruit bread. Each member
of the family gets a slice. Great interest is taken in the
outcome as there is a piece of rag, a coin and a ring in
each cake. If you get the rag then your financial future is
doubtful. If you get the coin then you can look forward to
a prosperous year. Getting the ring is a sure sign of
impending romance or continued happiness.
The Ivy Leaf: Each member of the family places a perfect
ivy leaf into a cup of water and it is then left undisturbed
overnight. If, in the morning, a leaf is still perfect and
has not developed any spots then the person who placed the
leaf in the cup can be sure of 12 months health until the
following Halloween. If not.....
The Pumpkin: Carving Pumpkins dates back to the eighteenth
century and to an Irish blacksmith named Jack who colluded
with the Devil and was denied entry to Heaven. He was
condemned to wander the earth but asked the Devil for some
light. He was given a burning coal ember which he placed
inside a turnip that he had gouged out.
The tradition of Jack O'Lanterns was born - the bearer
being the wandering blacksmith - a damned soul. Villagers
in Ireland hoped that the lantern in their window would keep
the wanderer away. When the Irish emigrated in millions to
America there was not a great supply of turnips so pumpkins
were used instead.
Halloween Costumes: On Halloween night children would dress
up in scary costumes and go house to house. 'Help the
Halloween Party' and 'Trick or Treat' were the cries to be
heard at each door. This tradition of wearing costumes also
dates back to Celtic times. On the special night when the
living and the dead were at their closest the Celtic Druids
would dress up in elaborate costumes to disguise themselves
as spirits and devils in case they encountered other devils
and spirits during the night. By disguising they hoped that
they would be able to avoid being carried away at the end
of the night. This explains why witches, goblins and ghosts
remain the most popular choices for the costumes.
Snap Apple: After the visits to the neighbours the Halloween
games begin, the most popular of which is Snap Apple. An
apple is suspended from a string and children are
blindfolded. The first child to get a decent bite of the
apple gets to keep their prize. The same game can be played
by placing apples in a basin of water and trying to get a
grip on the apple without too much mess!
The Bonfire: The Halloween bonfire is a tradition to
encourage dreams of who your future husband or wife is going
to be. The idea was to drop a cutting of your hair into the
burning embers and then dream of you future loved one.
Halloween was one of the Celt 'fire' celebrations.
Blind Date: Blindfolded local girls would go out into the
fields and pull up the first cabbage they could find. If
their cabbage had a substantial amount of earth attached to
the roots then there future loved one would have money.
Eating the cabbage would reveal the nature of their future
husband - bitter or sweet!
Another way of finding your future spouse is to peel an
apple in one go. If done successfully the single apple
peel could be dropped on the floor to reveal the initials
of the future-intended.
Anti-Fairy Measures: Fairies and goblins try to collect
as many souls as they can at Halloween but if they met a
person who threw the dust from under their feet at the
Fairy then they would be obliged to release any souls
that they held captive.
Holy water was sometimes anointed on farm animals to keep
them safe during the night. If the animals were showing
signs of ill health on All Hallows Eve then they would be
spat on to try to ward off any evil spirits.
Happy Halloween from Ireland!
CARA IRISH PENPALS SUCCESS STORY
It is great to hear a story that reminds us that the World
Wide Web is really about people. The following was received
in our mailbox to remind us of just that:
This is just a quick note to say thanks to you. In February
2000 I got in touch with a lovely lady in the states through
Cara Irish Penpals. Things worked out so well that I spent
3 weeks in Los Angeles in August 2000 with her and I am
going back in December 2000.
In February 2001 she is coming to Ireland for a month. All
thanks to you. When I joined Cara Irish penpals I had no
idea what the outcome,if any, was going to be, but it could
not have turned out better.
I just wanted you to know that something fantastic has come
out of it. Thanks Cara penpals, keep up the good work.
You can visit Cara Irish Penpals here:
ODE TO DAL-RIADA by James M. McDonald
There was an Irish kingdom, Dal-Riada was her name,
She was the mother country from which all Scotsmen came.
Located up in Antrim, far in the North was she,
She gave birth to a race of greatness yet to be.
Through conflict or through famine her people crossed the Moyle,
And founded a new kingdom, there on Alba's Scottish soil.
Dal-Riada was growing in people and strength,
As the population shifted o're the years at length.
Finally, they separated, these two Gaelic lands,
But, they stayed one family, with outstretched hands.
In good times and in bad they supported each other.
For one was the child, and the other the mother.
Though the tides of time and change now separate the two,
The facts remain ever steadfast, faithful and true.
The roots of Highland Scotland are Irish as can be,
Its truth well-documented for the whole world to see.
Dal-Riada is the birthplace of the true Highland race,
Our historic mother homeland, that sacred Irish place.
GAELIC PHRASES OF THE MONTH
PHRASE: Tá mé Tuirseach
PRONOUNCED: thaw may tir/shock
MEANING: I am tired
PHRASE: Tá mé ar buille
PRONOUNCED: thaw may air boo/ill/ya
MEANING: I am angry
PHRASE: Tá mé air meisce
PRONOUNCED: Thaw may air mesh/kah
MEANING: I am drunk
View the archive of phrases here:
FIRST INTERNATIONAL CELTIC FESTIVAL FROM ARGENTINA
27th and 28th October 2000 in the cities of Buenos Aires
and Rosario. You cen get more details from Susana Shanahan,
THE WOLFE TONES IN CONNECTICUT
Irish Rose & Thorn Promotions, Sunday 12th November.
More Details from Pat Caldwell at IrshRoseTh@aol.com
SHAMROCK SITE OF THE MONTH
Irish Auctioneers and Valuers Institute
Ever thought of owning an Irish country cottage or home?
Online pictures, descriptions and prices.
SEARCHER SITE OF THE MONTH
The Irish at Home and Abroad Quarterly Journal.
Focusing on sources and strategies for Irish and Irish
immigrant genealogical research.
SUPPORT THE INFORMATION ABOUT IRELAND SITE
HELP US TO CONTINUE TO PROVIDE FREE RESOURCES
Visit our Online Store at:
OCTOBER COMPETITION RESULT
The winner was: email@example.com
who will receive the following:
Irish Name Screensaver (from our list of 20,000 names)
Our 6-Pack of Irish Screensavers (US$42 value)
AND our Irish Genealogy Report (US$9 value)
Well Done! Remember that all subscribers to this newsletter
are automatically entered into the competition every time.
I hope that you have enjoyed this issue.
Please keep the feedback coming!
Until the next time,
THE VERY BEST FROM IRELAND!
The Information about Ireland Site.