Ireland is an island in the Atlantic ocean off the north-western coast of continental Europe. It is the third largest island in Europe, as well as, the twentieth largest in the world. There are many interesting fun-filled facts about Ireland which most of you may not have even heard of. This article will focus on the Top 10 Interesting Facts About Ireland.
1. The White House was designed by an Irishman. In the year of 1792, Thomas Jefferson and George Washington organized a competition to decide who would build the President’s house in America. The competition was won by an Irishman named James Hoban. Hoban was born in Ireland and studied architecture in his homeland. The White House was destroyed in 1814 and Hoban had to redesign the building altogether.
2. Grace O’Malley was an infamous pirate queen who was born in Ireland. She was said to be fearless and skilled in battle-fare and politics as well. She was notorious, rebellious and gained her reputation by fighting on the front lines as hard as her male counterparts.
3. Ireland is the only country on the planet which has a musical instrument – the harp – as its national symbol. The oldest known harp was found in Dublin, Ireland which dates back to the year of 1300.
4. Another one of the Top 10 Interesting Facts About Ireland is related to beer. An Irishman consumes an average of 131.1 liters of beer per year. Which is the second largest per-capita consumption in the world, right after the Czech Republic.
5. Halloween traces back its origins to the Gaelic festival in Samhain. It was a harvest festival held on the 31st of October to mark the end of summer. Samhain then became associated with All saints day on the 01st of November from the middle ages. The two dates merged over the centuries to create Halloween
6. Bram Stoker, from Dublin, Ireland was the author of Count Dracula. The world famous vampire horror story was written in 1897 with inspiration from a friend of Bram Stoker an actor Sir Henry Irving. The culmination of 20 years of vampire stories in Victorian literature was Count Dracula. Dracula is said to have been inspired by the early Irish legend of Abhartach, who was an evil chieftain betrayed by his subjects and slain by his enemy. Abhartach is said to have rose from his grave every night to drink blood from his subjects.
7. St. Patrick was not Irish after all. St. Patrick has been hailed as the patron saint of Ireland. Ireland is actually having a day named after him, and most of the folks around the world uses this day to get extremely drunk. St. Patrick was actually the son of the Romans, who were living in Britain. St. Patrick was kidnapped and then taken to the Emerald Island where he had helped to herd sheep. A recent study by the Cambridge university states that St. Patrick may have gone to Ireland on his own and sold himself in order to avoid being drafted into a job as a tax collector by the Romans.
8. The Earls of Rosse were considered great inventors. The castles of the Earls of Rosse have been studied for possessing many photographic equipment, engineering and other scientific marvels that held great sway over many generations who lived their. The Rosse Telescope was built in the 1800′s by one of the Earls, and it was recorded as the largest Telescope in the entire world for more than half a century during the 1800′s. The diameter of this Telescope was 72 inches which was quite impressive for that time of history.
9. Irish Gaelic is the ancestral language of the Irish people. Even though there are 1.6 million people claiming competency in Irish Gaelic today, only 38,000 people knows to speak the language.
10. More than 88% of the people in Ireland are Roman Catholic. Ireland has one of the highest rates of church attendance in the western part of the world. There are close to 45% of regular mass attendance in the Island. The above mentioned are some of the top 10 interesting facts about Ireland.