Archive for October, 2009

Passport Photos

Thursday, October 29th, 2009

I can now take photos for gun licences, driving licences, giraffe licences, safe passes, passports etc. Only €7 for two or €10 for four. Ready in 5 minutes and guaranteed to conform to the new E-Passport standards. These people look like convicts but the camera doesn’t lie. They look like that in real life too…especially Anne Galligan. Dont tell her I said that.


Floating Coffins

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009


These floating coffins are in Kill graveyard, a mile or so west of Kilnaleck. They are a mother and daughter. The mother was married to an O’Reilly from Baltrasna, but the O’Reilly family wouldn’t allow her burial in the O’Reilly plot. There is a spring well under the vault which causes it to flood. For loads more about Kill graveyard, check out this project done by kids from Kilnaleck National School in 2005 including instructions for using it’s famous healing clay which it is said can cure pretty much anything.

Cavan Cathedral

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

cavan cathedral-2105

The original Cathedral of the diocese of Kilmore was situated about four miles south of Cavan town in the present parish of Kilmore. Some time in the 6th century St Felim established a church there. It was rebuilt in the middle of the fifteenth century as a cathedral. During the reformation it was confiscated and is still a Church of Ireland (Anglican) cathedral

The new cathedral was built between the years 1938 and 1942, and was one of the last of the huge Roman Catholic cathedrals built in Ireland from the 1850s onwards. Unlike most Irish cathedrals, it is neo-classical in style with a single spire rising to 230 feet. The portico consists of a tympanum supported by four massive columns of Portland stone with Corinthian caps. The tympanum figures of Christ, St Patrick and St Felim were executed by the Dublin sculptor, Edward Smith.

The interior is vast and quite gloomy. The twenty eight columns in the Cathedral, the pulpit on the south side and all the statues are of Pavinazetto marble and came from the firm of Dinelli Figli of Pietrasanta in Italy. The interior seems unfinished, the chapels to the northern side are finished in better materials than those on the southern, suggesting a budgetry problem. Unusually it still has its altar rails intact.

Cavan Cathedral-2091

cavan cathedral-2

Kilcrea Friary

Saturday, October 17th, 2009

Kilcrea Friary-2036

Kilcrea Friary is near Ovens, west of Cork city. Founded in 1465 for the Observant Franciscans by Cormac Laidir MacCarthy, Lord of Muskerry. It is set in beautiful farmland and is the burial place of Airt Ó Laoghaire (Art O’Leary) , a Roman Catholic, who was an officer in the Austro-Hungarian army.
Having returned home to Rathleigh House near Macroom, Cork, Ireland, Art refused to sell his prize-winning horse to Englishman Abraham Morris, and was thus made an outlaw. Under the Penal Laws of Ireland, Roman Catholics were obliged under law to sell their horse to Protestants if demanded to do so. Morris tracked O’Leary and shot him on his horse on May 4, 1773.
O’Leary’s wife Eileen O’Connell composed the famous Caoineadh Airt Uí Laoghaire or Lament for Art O’Leary, mourning his death and calling for revenge.

As is common in ancient Irish churches and Abbeys, people began using the interior as a graveyard, and there’s a mixture of people buried here; some right up to the present day.

Kilcrea Friary-2043 Kilcrea Friary-2044

Lough Derravaragh

Friday, October 16th, 2009


Beautiful Lough Derravarragh, near Crookedwood, Co. Westmeath is associated with one of the most famous tales of Irish imaginative literature – ” Oidhe Chlann Lir”, the Fate of the Children of Lir. Founded partly on fact and partly on fiction this tale is classed among what are generally called Tri Truagha na Scealaidheachta, The Three Sorrows of Storytelling – the other two being The Exile of the Children of Uisneach and The Faith of the Children of Tuireann.

Lir was a chieftain of the Tuatha de Danann tribe. On the death of Daghda, their king a convention of chiefs elected Bodhbh Dearg (Bov the Red) his son to succeed him. This decision offended Lir who felt he had a greater claim to the kingship.

Shortly thereafter, Lir ‘s wife died and Bodhbh Dearg, who had three beautiful foster-daughters, as a gesture of friendship offered Lir the choice of his daughters as wife. Lir chose Aobh (Eve) the eldest who bore him four beautiful children: Fionnuala, Aodh, Fiachra, and Conn. Tragedy struck and Aobh died, Lir was heartbroken and he too would have died but for the great love he had for his children.

After a time Bodhbh Dearg offered Lir Aoife, the sister of Aobh, as wife; accordingly Lir and Aoife were married.

Lir’s four children were famous for their beauty and were beloved by all the Tuatha De Danann. At the beginning Aoife looked after the children with a mother’s love but evil touched her heart and she became insanely jealous of Lir’s love for his children.

One morning when Lir was away hunting Aoife took the children out in her chariot to visit their grandfather Bodhbh Dearg. Stopping at Lough Derravaragh she led the children to the water to bathe. As soon as they were on the lake she cast a spell changing them into four beautiful swans, decreeing that they should spend 300 years on Lough Derravaragh, 300 years on the Sea of Moyle (between Ireland and Scotland) and 300 years on the Bay of Erris, Co Mayo.

Aoife left them their speech and also gave them the power of singing in a way surpassing all earthly music. Legend has it that for this crime Bodhbh Dearg punished Aoife by transforming her into an air demon.

During their 300 years on Lough Derravaragh great crowds frequently camped on the shore to listen to the singing of the swans. Later on the stormy Sea of Moyle and finally, on the Bay of Erris the four swan-children underwent great sufferings.

During their final days on the Bay of Erris, the children learnt of a holy man called Patrick, who had come to Ireland to tell the people about the Christian faith (St Patrick came to Ireland in 432A.D.). As one of Patrick’s disciples prayed with them their feathers fell away and they were restored to their human form. They were now three old feeble men and an old woman. Patrick’s disciple St Caemhoch baptised them before they died. They were buried together in the one grave as they had wished .