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Fosters Irish Oddities - A Book of Strange Irish Facts

Tuesday, 12 December 2006


Do you know what the longest place name in Ireland is? Or, that the only person to ever steal the crown jewels was an Irish Daredevil!!  Well, if you have a love of all things trivia, we have the perfect Irish Christmas stocking-filler.

Some strange facts from the book
. Longest place name in Ireland is Muckanaghederdauhaulia ( 22 letters) which is 6 km from Costello in Camus Bay, Co.Galway
. During the Easter Rising in 1916 fighting stopped twice a day to allow for the feeding of the ducks in St.Stephen's Green.
. The tallest twins ( identical) ever recorded were the Knipe Brothers (born 1761) from Magherafelt in Co.Derry who were 7ft 2in ( 218.4cm)
. The cream cracker was invented in 1885 by W R Jacob at his premises on Bridge St in Waterford.
. In 1805 issue of Wonderful and Science Museum Magazine, 70-year-old Elizabeth Wesley from Macroom Co.Cork, earned a special mention.  From about 1798 onwards, she had suffered  from pain at the side of her head from which a horn, resembling in shape that of a ram's horn, grew to nine inches long.
. Ireland is the only country in the world that has a musical instrument as its national symbol - the harp.
. Only one man has ever dared to steal the Crown Jewels - Meath born daredevil adventurer, Colonel Thomas Blood did so in broaddaylight on 9th May 1671.  He was caught but managed to evade the hangman's noose because King Charles II was so impressed with his daring that he pardoned him and actually awarded him a large annuity instead.
. In August 1931, over the space of a week, Miss Anne Clarke of Raphoe, Co. Donegal, single-handedly mowed, tied and stacked an acre of six-foot high oats - at the age of ninety!
For more information
Foster's Irish Oddities is published by New Island and is priced at €12.95