It’s been a hugely historic week in Ireland as we commemorated the centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising. All events were carried out with huge pride and honour for our countrymen who died for the cause of Independence. To see some highlights follow this link:
O’Donovan Rossa, a founding member of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, died in New York on 29 June 1915. Another Fenian leader cabled Tom Clarke in Dublin to ask what should be done. Clarke replied, “Send his body home at once.” Clarke and Thomas McDonagh began planning a huge funeral as a demonstration of support for Irish independence.
Clarke chose Patrick Pearse, a barrister and schoolteacher who was known as a wonderful orator, to give the graveside oration. At that time republican leaders were refraining from making rousing speeches for fear of imprisonment at a crucial time in the preparations for a rising. When Pearse asked how far he should go, Clarke answered, “Make it hot as hell, throw discretion to the winds.”
And here’s a part of the speech delivered by Padraig Pearse:
They think that they have pacified Ireland. They think that they have purchased half of us and intimidated the other half. They think that they have foreseen everything, think that they have provided against everything; but the fools, the fools, the fools! – they have left us our Fenian dead, and while Ireland holds these graves, Ireland unfree shall never be at peace.
Rossa’s funeral, and Pearse’s oration, had the desired effect creating the conditions for a rising. Eight months later, on 24 April 1916, Pearse stood in the portico of the General Post Office in Dublin and read the Irish Proclamation.
Today, Pearse’s funeral oration is considered one of the most important speeches in 20th century Irish history.
On beer news, the St Patrick’s Day craft beer festival in Dublin brought new and old breweries to the RDS.
My favourite new tasting was a centenary beer called Children of the Revolution which caused some controversy in the media as it had children in the title but the fact is that many children lost their lives as part of the 1916 rising. It was all good publicity for the brewery in question Wicklow Wolf, Quincey owner and brewer there defended the beer name “Some people try to find offence in certain things… but at this stage, we’ve had absolutely no negativity towards the beer, and I can’t understand to be honest why there would be – the title of the beer ‘Children of the Revolution’ is really [our] small way of tipping our glass to the brave people of 1916.”
The beer is a lovely hoppy American style IPA coming in at 5.7% ABV. We always enjoy our visit to Wicklow Wolf brewery on the day trip from Dublin.
Thanks for reading.
Happy Fools Friday!