By Fintan O'Toole
Items do not simply have tales, they inform tales. yet what they stated to their contemporaries might be diverse from what they are saying to us. no matter if it is a silver tea urn from Georgian Dublin or an illuminated web page from the publication of Kells, those gadgets aid us achieve a extra advanced figuring out of our prior. during the last years Fintan O'Toole has selected a hundred gadgets, the vast majority of that are present in the National Museum of eire, to relate a background of the island of Ireland. Read more...
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Extra resources for A history of Ireland in 100 objects
Reclining Buddha, late-nineteenth century 89. Titanic launch ticket, 1911 90. Lamp from River Clyde, 1915 91. James Connolly’s shirt, 1916 92. Rejected coin design, 1927 93. Boyne corracle, 1928 94. Eileen Gray chair, 1926 95. Emigrant’s suitcase, 1950s 96. Washing machine, 1950s 97. Bloody Sunday handkerchief, 1972 98. Intel microprocessor, 1994 99. Anglo Irish Bank sign, 2000–2011 100. ” I The story of human beings on the island of Ireland is very short. The earliest evidence of people living here goes back only to c.
Iron spearhead, 800–675 BC The past is unpredictable. This iron spearhead, found in the River Inny at Lackan in Co. Westmeath, is of a kind familiar enough from the Ireland of ad 500. Andy Halpin of the National Museum says that it ‘would not be out of place in the early-mediaeval period…When you think of the Iron Age legends of Cúchulainn, this is the type of weapon that people think of them carrying’. The problem is that recent radiocarbon dating of the remains of its wooden shaft suggests that this spear may be more than 1,200 years older than that.
Why were the dead placed as if they were curled up in the womb? The obvious suggestion is of a simple and beautiful metaphor: the tomb is a womb. The dead are to be reborn into another life. The drink or food in the vessel is meant to sustain them on the journey from one state to the other. This tells us both that these Bronze Age people were looking carefully at the human body: they knew the shape of the child in the womb; and that this capacity to observe humanity went hand in hand with a desire to transcend it.
A history of Ireland in 100 objects by Fintan O'Toole