A Letter from Ireland:
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Irish Surnames and Their Counties

Do you have Irish surnames in your family tree? If the answer is yes, then read on – and discover more about the surnames of Ireland, where they come from – and see if you can spot some of your Irish surnames. When a new reader signs up for our weekly Letter from Ireland – we […]

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Saint Nicholas of Kilkenny

Children the world over await the arrival of Saint Nicholas at Christmastime, envisioning his arrival by sleigh from some secret homeland at the North Pole. In this letter we will visit Kilkenny, the possible resting place of the actual Saint Nicholas. Céad Míle Fáilte – and you are very welcome to your Letter from Ireland […]

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Irish Hounds and Irish Surnames

Irish hounds

What do Irish Hounds and Irish surnames have to do with each other? Did you ever wonder about the origin of your Irish surname? Maybe it had to do with a particular place, or a personality trait of a long distant ancestor? Perhaps it might even have to do with an important animal in the […]

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The Penal Laws – and A Tale of Love and Loss

Art O'Leary burial

Have you ever heard of the “Penal Laws” in Ireland? During the 1700s, certain laws were put in place that forbade Roman Catholics (and Presbyterians) from assuming certain offices and owning property above a certain value. Here is the story of one couple who lived during  this time. Céad Míle Fáilte – and welcome to […]

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What Are the “Approved” Irish Names in Your Family?

Céad Míle Fáilte – and you are welcome to this week’s Letter from Ireland. We’re coming closer to mid-summer and you can feel it in the air here in Cork. It’ll soon be bright until 11.00pm at night – and there will always be a little light on the horizon through the night. It’s a […]

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