Hi Henry , what Henry ....you didn't know that The Bard was a Mayo Man like meself !!! I'm sure that so.eplace back there alittle dropeen of Gaelic blood found it's way into him !! ☘☘....if he was lucky . LOL..
In the Ireland of the old days the Pen was a whole lot safer and often a better weapon than the Sword ....Maybe you shouldn't bring a knife to a Gunfight but sometimes bringing a Pen ( quill pen !! ) to a Swordfight worked fairly well . Like many ancient societies and cultures attempts were made to decimate native language and culture over hundreds of years in Ireland . There were " Hedge Schools " ( in the Bog under a stick and sod lean-to ) or the Bog Mass sites where religious gatherings too place . The Irish / Gaelic language being banned under penalty of death or at minimum , eviction with the little house burned or roof removed .
The history ( like many others ) was passed along in Stories told by the " Auld ones " , Granny or Granda sitting by an open fire with a big pot of Spuds boiling in the big black " Witches Pot " with a hook allowing it to swing in and over the Turf ( Peat) fire . . Being a good Storyteller requires lots of imagination and creativity , embellishing on the fly to keep the attention of the audience .
Conflicts and battles were recounted as Fairytales which had deep roots in actual history . The reality of history was mixed with a healthy dose of imagination and fantasy populated by Giants and Heroes , Magical Swans and Gigantic Irish Wolfhounds ( Really like a small Donkey !! ) . Every culture must have it's hero characters , some real , actual people and some a mixture of Saints and Warriors from history and Pre-history . The culture was kept alive and saved by the Storytellers . On a bit of a tangent the early Church in the "Dark Ages " became the saviors of the historical records from the fall of Rome onwards . The Monks of " Skellig Michael " off the coast of Kerry / Cork on the Southern Coast . were amazing people . This tiny island is just s Spike of rock sticking up out of the Atlantic a few miles off the coast . They lived in tiny " Beehive Huts " built without mortar or cement or even Lime , just flat stones cantelevered in a perfect Dome . The Island and the Beehive Huts are featured in the last Star Wars movie , just a magical location . The Monks dedicated their lives to making copies of religious and historical manuscripts from all over Europe . Pics in my Photos page .
Anyway .......lol ....rambling again . The storytellers eventually got tgeir hands on pen and paper and Gutenberg supplied their mass marketing . I think this is why we are known for " The Gift of The Gab " !! I used to have Kitty and her Kiddies rolling on the floor with roars of laughter when I would portray an old Irish Farmer giving directions , if your GPS stops working !!
" The place you're looking for is just down there now , over that hill . You know you're on the right road when you pass the cottage on the left that used to be there . Keep going until you see the Cows on the right but they won't be there cause Jimmy Jon McGinty will have the in for milking .......and so it gies for ten minutes , no wiser at the finish than at the start but very entertaining with lots of stories about the Sheep that fell over the 150 foot cliffs while trying to get that one clump of sweet green grass that was just too far out on the ledge . This is a fact actually . There will be a huge field of lovely fresh grass and the Sheep will be right out on the edge of a huge cliff , stretching his neck to reach that one clump of grass he just has to have . I've seen Donkeys and Sheep washed up on the rocks but never Goats !! Smart and agile mountain climbers !!
What was I talking abiut again .....oh yea ..Dracula had his literary origins in Dublin the home of Bram Stoker . A quite appropriate description of how the Colonial Powers sucked the blood out of their victims , trying not to actually kill them ( usually ) but to control their subjects / victims and use them for as ling as they were useful . When Estates needed to be consolidated by the local Lord then the tenants were expendable , worn out by the Bloodsuckers who stole their food , their health , language and culture and finally the roof over their head , spelling their end . Not sure if this might have been an intended subplot but I find it very interesting to speculate . He attended Trinity College in Dublin which was usually out of bounds for Native Irish people . Trinity could be described as the Protestant University , a Unionist institution which catered to the families of Settled English and Loyal Unionists only .
It is funny sometimes , if a Northern person is percieved as " good , heroic etc etc then both England and Ireland will claim them as a Native Son . If he / she is more a villian than hero then both England and Ireland will vehemently describe them as belonging to the Other side . Soccer was notorious as a gauge of how Unionist or Nationalist a person leaned . In Northern Ireland a Pub conversation would start by finding out which Soccer Team a person supported . The Scots Celtics meant Irish Nationalist / Catholic ....the Scots Rangers meant Unionist / Loyalist / Protestant . . Being the Wrong Color meant a quick and quiet exit ....without finishing the Pint !!! .
Ok that's it ...😱☘
Just to be clear Henry and the crew who might read this far ?? The things I write , stories etc are 100% factual unless I say otherwise .