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Name the five Great Trees of Ireland? What trees are most often found beside holy wells or cemeteries? Which tree gave the Red Branch Knights of Ulster their name? Ireland was once so heavily wooded it was said a squirrel could travel from Cork to Killarney without touching the ground. So it is no surprise that, in ancient Ireland, mythology and folklore were a part of the people's general knowledge about trees. Many of the myths and legends and much of the folklore associated with native trees persists to this day and are gathered together in this book.
Brings to life the myths, legends, and folklore associated with native Irish trees, much of which persists to this day. Beautifully illustrated and imaginatively written, this mix of natural history, mythology, and folklore will entertain and enlight
Ireland's Green Larder tells the story of food and drink in Ireland, for the first time. From the ancient system of the Céide Fields, established a thousand years before the Pyramids were built, right up to today’s thriving food scene. Rather than focusing on battles and rulers, Margaret Hickey digs down to what has formed the day-to-day life of the people. It’s a glorious ramble through the centuries, drawing on diaries, letters, legal texts, ballads, government records, folklore and more. The story of how Queen Maeve died after being hit by a piece of hard cheese sits alongside a contemporary interview with one of Ireland’s magnificent cheese makers, and the tale of the author’s day in Clew Bay on the wild Atlantic coast, collecting the world’s freshest oysters, is countered by Jonathan Swift’s complaint about dubiously fresh salmon being sold on the streets of Dublin. Beautifully illustrated and dotted with recipes, there are chapters covering everything from strong tea to the Irish rituals and superstitions associated with food and drink. With a light touch and a flair for finding the most telling details, Hickey draws on years of research to bring this sweeping history brilliantly to life.
In ancient Ireland there were 365 different parts to the body, and a different plant to cure each part. So the wild plants of Ireland are bound up in our culture and folklore from the earliest times. To arry a four-leaved shamrock brings luck in gambling, while putting nine ivy leaves under her pillow means a girl will dream of her future husband. Here plants are described in seasonal order, a perspective dating back to our ancestors. Different aspects of plant folklore are examined following a brief history of traditional herbal medicine in Ireland. Included are their roles in magical protection, in charms and spells (especially for love!), as emblems in children’s games, and in Irish place names.
Don’t leave yet. Let there be one more piece of magic to remember the place by. Is there something especially Irish about Irish gardens? The climate, soils, availability of plants and skills of green-fingered people generate an unusually benign environment, it’s true, but not one that is unique to Ireland. Irish gardens tend to avoid magnificence in favour of a quiet and domesticated beauty, but that is not peculiar to Ireland either. As Peter Dale demonstrates in this ground-breaking book, strains of Irishness run through these gardens like seams of ore. Seen not just as zones of horticultural bravura, but also as reflections of historical, cultural, political and religious events and values, the gardens accrue an unusual richness of surface and depth of meaning. Atmospherically illustrated by Brian Lalor, The Irish Garden wanders into individual gardens, rather than presenting a sweeping chronology. Though not uncritical of some aspects, this book is a rhapsody on themes of Irishness, as if the spirit and soul of Ireland itself were sometimes more visible in these places than in the more conventionally visited locations of battlefields, breweries and bars.
The result is a revealing portrait of a people and a place caught between past and future during a time of profound change."--BOOK JACKET.

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