This blog is a personal take on Listowel, Co. Kerry. I am writing for anyone anywhere with a Listowel connection but especially for sons and daughters of Listowel who find themselves far from home. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
These recent stamps are based on The Book of Kells.
This is what An Post says about them.
Over half a million visitors view the Book of Kells at Trinity College, Dublin, each year but, on February 23, you will have the opportunity to lay your hands on two stamps that feature beautiful illustrations from this masterpiece.
The Book of Kells is widely credited as being the most renowned of all medieval illuminated manuscripts for its intricacy, detail and, particularly, the majesty of the illustrations. Measuring 330 x 255mm, the book is an illuminated manuscript of the four gospels of the Christian New Testament. It was reputedly created by Columban monks c800 AD.
The two stamp designs feature details of the profile of a lion’s head, a symbol of Christ and his resurrection. The FDC image represents a cat apprehending a rodent in possession of a communion host. The illustrations on some pages highlight how, in medieval monasteries, cats were seen to preserve the supply of food for body (and soul – chasing mice breaking into stores of Communion hosts.)
The images in the Book of Kells are called miniatures and were painted by artists who were known as miniaturists and later as illuminators. Abstract decoration and images of plant, animal and human ornament punctuate the text with the aim of glorifying Jesus’ life and message.
Your help is Needed
Good morning. My Name is Allen O’Callaghan and I live in Omaha, Nebraska, USA. I’ve been pursuing my families history in Ireland, and particularly in the towns of Listowel and Ballybunion. My G—G grandfather owned properties in both towns, as well as agricultural properties south of Listowel. His name was Gerard J. O’Callaghan (1808-1888) and apparently prominent as he was in the local newspapers quite often. He had a daughter named Mary Jane O’Callaghan (1845-1923), who professed with the sisters-of-mercy as Sr. M M Louis. According to census records she was Mother Superior of a convent in Ballybunion. I’m having problems reconciling modern day locations with the family lore and actual known records. At one point I was told that a family home called Sea View Lodge was given to the Catholic Church. If you have any knowledge of any of these old locations and/or can recommend any available histories I can review, I’d be very much appreciative.
If you can help Allen will you contact me on email@example.com and I’ll put you in touch with Allen.
One of the most beautiful treasures in the National Museum is The Tara Brooch which dates from around 700A.D. It was found on the beach in Bettystown in 1850 and according to Wikipaedia has nothing to do with Tara at all.
The original may have nothing to do with Tara but this one has a Listowel connection. Eileen Moylan of Listowel, Macroom and Claddagh Design fame was once commissioned to make a modern day replica solid silver “Tara” brooch. She took us step by step through the smithing process in her blog here:
The pieces cut out in silver.
Inserting the gems.
Engraving, finishing and polishing
Eileen’s splendid finished diamond and emerald brooch
Wouldn’t it be perfect to wear on Patrick’s Day?
Listowel Credit Union at 50
The interior of Listowel Credit Union’s lovely office on the Monday of the celebration, March 6 2023.
I met Eleanor OSullivan and Jimmy Deenihan.
Leo Daly and Betty O’Sullivan are long serving members of the credit union. They posed for my photos with Jimmy Deenihan.
There was a big display of press clippings on the day. I photographed a few.
Look who is Coming to Listowel Writers’ Week 2023
“Seamus O’Hara, who plays Turlough in An Irish Goodbye, will be leading a workshop with acclaimed Casting Director Mary-Ellen O’Hara called ‘Interpretation, Inflection, Intonation: Poetry Aloud’.”
You can book a place in this workshop or tickets for some of the events on the programme at Listowel Writers’ Week
I posted this picture of Listowel men on a confraternity retreat a while ago. I had hoped to spark some memories of that all male institution but I haven’t got very far. The Confraternity was essentially a prayer group to keep men on the straight and narrow. It met for “meetings’ once a month. These were held in the church and consisted of prayers and sermons. Once a year they all headed off to Limerick for a retreat.
Locally some sceptics regarded them as “Holy Joes” A while ago I got this missive from an unnamed local man;
Regarding the Confraternity and the Sodality; these were gone or on the way out when I was a nipper. I do remember a crude put-down that was used in those days against someone that was, in the common perception, ‘ró-mhór leis an gcléir,’ and involved in every religious event and occasion- this put-down was as follows: ‘Jaysus, that fellow is stuck in everything! He’d be in the Children of Mary as well, if they could find a knickers big enough for him.
Looking Forward to St. Patrick’s Day
Some stalwarts of St. Patrick’s Day parades in the past.
Dandy Lodge Story Continued
This is a photo in the National Museum of Bridge Road, Listowel in 1903. You can see the Dandy Lodge on the left.
There it stood until 1997 when it was moved brick by brick into Childers’ Park to be looked after by Listowel Pitch and Putt Club.
You can see from the press release that Adare Co. Limerick had an interest in purchasing the lodge. We have to thank the foresight of Listowel Pitch and Putt Club members who made sure it remained in Listowel.
The late Tom O’Halloran took these photos of the relocation.
The following pictures were taken at the opening.
A presentation to Tom and Eileen OHalloran
Joe Dillon, Jerry Brick and Cathal Fitzgerald
Bill Walsh, Paul O’Dowd, Jerry Maher, Dr. Corridan and Joseph Dillon, previous owner of The Dandy Lodge