Round Towers, High Crosses and Coins…

Your letter from Ireland shorts from the 23rd of January 2024.

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Round Towers, High Crosses and Coins…

Céad míle fáilte, welcome to your Letter from Ireland “Shorts”.  Each Tuesday we’ll bring you a quick-read of some of our favourite and interesting Irish things for this week.

Monasterboice, County Louth.
 That’s what I call a high tower! In county Louth you will find an early Christian monastic settlement containing some of the finest high crosses in Ireland as well as this impressive round tower. The high crosses were built in the 10th century and you can see just how big these high crosses are in this video with Carina.  We also walked this graveyard with our Green Room resident genealogist Jayne McGarvey pictured above and you can hear the resulting conversation in this podcast episode.

PLUS members, be sure to check out our Louth homelands feature where we visited Monasterboice by clicking here.

Our Irish surname of the week is Rogan. In Irish it is O’Ruaghagain, coming from the word “ruadh” meaning the “red haired one”. This family was part of the Oriel sept which covered Louth. To see where the name appears in Ireland in the mid 1800s go to this page on

“The Van” by Roddy Doyle
. This is for you if you are in need of a good laugh! The Van is part of the “Barrytown Trilogy” and is about two friends down on their luck and out of work deciding to start a “chipper van” business. It’s about friendship, family and is just great fun all around. Click here to see the book on amazon. 


Téann focail le gaoth

Which translates to “Words are like wind”.

Click here to listen to how a native Irish speaker would say it.

Put your trust in the actions instead of the words of people!

IRISH CRAFT/PRODUCT WE LOVE (not an advert – just things we like) 

Collector Coins have some great commemorative coins for all those interested. It’s run by the Central Bank here in Ireland and they have a range of limited run coins and sets for sale that can be a good Irish connection for people who enjoy collecting. The popular ones can be expensive and go fast but there is a wide range for all interests.

This coin commemorating 100 years of transatlantic flight definitely caught my eye and is one for the travellers our there.

collector coins transatlantic aviation

That’s it for this week. Send us an email with any of your own favourites for inclusion in future emails, or if you’re a plus member leave a comment below.

Slán for now,
Mike & Carina.

Note: The above article may contain some affiliate links (for example the Amazon link) which means we get paid a small amount should you choose to purchase, at no extra cost to you. This helps us keep the show on the road!


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