Traditions, folklore, history and more. If it's Irish, it's here. Or will be!
"People will not look forward to posterity who never look backward to their ancestors."
Library: Books, Movies, Music
Prints & Photos
Bunús na Gaeilge
Circle of Prayer
Did You Know?
Write to Us
Links/Link to Us
Advertise with us
Awards & Testimonials
Help keep us free
Throughout the site you will see many items available for purchase from well-known merchants such as Amazon. Not interested in what we're featuring? It doesn't matter. Click on any link and then shop for whatever you wish - we will still get credit, if you buy something.
Thanks for your help.
Making Saint Brigid's Crosses
by the 4th class of Holy Family Senior School
The children of 4th Class Holy Family Senior School in Ennis, Co. Clare have been busy making St. Brigid's Crosses. If you'd like to make a St. Brigid's Cross, they have kindly given us their permission to reprint the instructions from their website - and also publish a couple of photos.
We've some pictures below showing the crosses being made. You will need some rushes or reeds picked from marsh land or by your local river. The reeds can be used to tie the ends of the cross or you may use elastic bands or cord if you prefer.
1. Loop the horizontal reed around the vertical reed.
2. Loop the next vertical reed around the horizontal reed.
3. Now loop next horizontal reed around both vertical reeds.
4. Then loop vertical reed around both horizontal reeds.
5. Finally, loop a horiz. reed around both vertical reeds going down.
You now repeat stages 1 - 5 approx. 4 times. Tie the ends and trim with a scissors.
The tradition is alive and well in Co. Clare - and not confined to the children. We encourage you to visit the Holy Family Senior School website and find out more.
While you're on the site, you might also want to explore what else is on offer. Holy Family is a co-educational, multi-cultural primary school and is prominently involved in the Information Age Project. The site has detailed accounts of Schools Integrated Projects (SIP), the Comenius Project, Sport, Arts and Crafts, Music, Creative Writing, History and much more.
This is a great way to learn about today's Irish educational culture. Enjoy your visit!
Special thanks to Margaret Cooney who so promptly replied to our request and gave us permission to reprint the photos and the instructions.
Index of Children's Stories
Thu, Apr 13, 2017
Making a May Bush for Beltane
Beltane is on May 1st and it’s a very old celebration to mark the beginning of the summer season. Long ago, children saved the colored shells from their hard-boiled Easter eggs and added them to the decorations for the May Bush which was a small shrub chosen for the honour. It was cut down and placed in front of the house in the days or weeks before Beltane. The children would then decorate it with flowers, ribbons, and Easter egg shells. Candles or rush lights* were attached to the bush and were lighted at dusk. In the cities, the May Bush was made by neighbours and sometimes there were attempts to steal it by folks from other neighbourhoods. It was said that you’d be taking the year's luck from the rightful owners. So, the May Bushes were fiercely guarded until the evening of May Day, when the bush would be cast into the Beltane Bonfire.
*To find out about rush lights, please click Wikipedia.
Photo Credit: RushMi.
Click for More Culture Corner.
"No man ever wore a cravat as nice, as his own child's arm around his neck."
- Irish Proverb
Brigid of Ireland
by Cindy Thomson
It seems an almost impossible task for writers not born and reared in Ireland to realistically convey the Irish idiom of the English language, but Cindy Thomson has been more successful than most. Her account of the early life of St Brigid is told with an obviously deep knowledge of the social history of fifth century Ireland and the rivalry between the old religion, represented by the druids, and the followers of St Patrick. Irish Emigrant
Click here for Brigid of Ireland.
To learn more about the author please click Cindy Thomson.