We asked you five questions about Ireland. Here come the answers!
- Who or what is the annual celebration Bloomsday named for? For a bonus point, on which date is it celebrated?
Leopold Bloom, the central figure of James Joyce’s novel Ulysses. The novel follows Bloom’s movements around the streets of Dublin on a single day in 1904, 16 June; the celebration of Bloomsday takes place on that date. The centennial celebrations included a free open-air full Irish breakfast for 10,000 people on O’Connell Street.
- What is Ireland’s Eye?
a) A small uninhabited island near Dublin. It lies directly north of Howth Harbour and has a total area of just 21.5 hectares, or 53 acres. (To avoid giving yourself away as a paper Paddy when talking about it, remember that Howth rhymes with “growth”, not “mouth”.)
- The Blarney Stone is a block of what type of rock?
Limestone. Legend has it that the builder of Blarney Castle was involved in a lawsuit and called on the goddess Clíodhna for help. She advised him to kiss the first stone he found on the way to court. This made him so eloquent in pleading his case that he won. He incorporated the stone into the castle’s parapet to commemorate the event.
- Which saint reputedly founded the city of Cork?
St Finbarr, in the 6th century. Cork was originally a monastic settlement, but it didn’t really start to grow until the Vikings founded a trading port alongside it. It was granted city status in 1185 by Prince John (of Robin Hood infamy), who was Lord of Ireland at the time.
- The term “Dublin Lawyer” refers to which of the following?
b) A dish of lobster with whiskey and cream. This traditional if luxurious dish is thought to have got its name because Dublin’s lawyers were rich and full of whiskey. It’s been a popular treat for at least two centuries.
How did you get on? Why not let us know?