Aug 25, 2006

History of Ireland

If you've ever heard various legends and tales about Ireland, but didn't know how they fit together, you need this book. I'm not finished reading it yet (I got sidetracked by David McCullough's 1776), but I can recommend it. McCourt's style makes for very easy reading. I just finished reading the part on Dermot MacMurrough and found out why nearly 800 years later, he's still the most hated man in Ireland. He's blamed for inviting the dreaded Ango-Normans into Ireland, but as with most stories, there's more to the story. Once ousted from Ireland, MacMurrough met with King HenryII and vowed alligance to him. Then he was permitted to raise an army, of which the most well-known was Richard de Clare, known, as his father was, by the name Strongbow. Archery was not known in Ireland until the Normans appeared to fight. MacMurrough promised de Clare the hand of his daughter, Aoife, and the right of succession after his death. With those incentives, Strongbow and the Normans invaded Ireland.

What does this have to do with Celtic Spirituality? Probably a lot as we study the evolution of a people's faith. Just as Christianity was affected and molded by the Celts, whom were supposed to be converted, this era in Irish history affected the church as well.


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