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Ireland

The Emerald Isle

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A beautiful island situated in the Atlantic Ocean just west of England, it's famous for Guinness and the cheerful Irish music that lightens the step. But Ireland's history has been chequered and one of the lesser-known facts is that the Irish were taken as slaves to the USA before black slavery began. The Irish were more harshly treated than any other people and many politicians don't want us to know this.

Repeatedly Invaded since the bronze age by the Gauls, Saxons and English, Ireland was divided into Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland in 1920. Saint Patrick introduced Christianity in 432 and the country became a centre of Gaelic and Latin learning.

The English have frequently been at war with the Irish and the English still administer Northern Ireland which causes great discomfort to the Irish and there have been frequent uprisings against the English in recent times. The 2002 census figures show that the population of the State is just over 3.9 million.

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From 1641 to 1652, over 500,000 Irish were killed by the English and another 300,000 were sold as slaves. Ireland’s population fell from about 1,500,000 to 600,000 in one single decade. Read more

The People
We all love the Irish! They are always up for a good time, and can be relied upon for some good barroom antics – real foot tapping music, funny jokes, plenty of smiles, and the next round. Irish lads and lasses have a reputation for always being up for it, whether that be a laugh, mischief, or both.

Ireland is steeped in mythology and there are countless places where you can go to meet the 'little people' or 'fairy folk' who when you calm your being and open your heart may make them selves known to you, but mind you don't overdo the Guinness else you may just be hallucinating.

North and South

Politically, Northern Ireland is part of Great Britain, but we are including all or Ireland in this area.  One of the differences between north and south is that Northern Ireland is the only part of Britain to introduce a law aimed at punishing prostitutes’ customers instead of sex workers.  (The Human Trafficking and Exploitation Act came into effect in 2015)

Early history

During the last glacial period, and up until about 9000 years ago, most of Ireland was covered with ice, most of the time. Sea levels were lower and Ireland, like Great Britain formed part of continental Europe. By 12,000 BC, rising sea levels due to ice melting caused Ireland to become separated from Great Britain.

From about 4500 BC, Neolithic settlers arrived introducing cereal cultivars, a housing culture (similar to those of the same period in Scotland) and stone monuments. Archaeological evidence shows that there was trade between Ireland and the Mediterranean taking place at least 1000 BC and possibly earlier.

Ireland was prosperous with a population of some 8 million until the English took control, exploited the Irish, sold many as slaves to the USA and Arab states but also killed over a million. This has left the Irish with an air of mystery and a deep sadness that manifests as good cheer and a zest for life.

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