Audio and Digital Collections
A series of audio recording of public lectures and conferences in addition to other digital collections hosted by the by the Royal Irish Academy library.
Audio-Visual Guide to the Academy and its Library
We have prepared a guided tour for you to learn about the history of the Academy and some of the famous writers, historians and scientists associated with our institution. You can also find out about the library collections and the Academy’s activities and projects. Find out more.
The Doegen Records Web Project
Listen to recordings of Irish speakers every region Ireland (1928-31). Learn more.
Representations of Jews in Irish Literature
Funded by the UK’s Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Representations of Jews in Irish Literature is a landmark project between Ulster University and the National University of Ireland, Galway. It examines the portrayal of Jewishness through an exhibition, laectures and publications which include a selection of key Irish-Jewish writing and Irish literature about Jews. Adopting a thematic and chronological approach, it investigates the depiction of Jews and Jewishness in Ireland from the Annals of Inisfallen in the medieval period, then through to centuries of poetry, prose and drama to the present day. Exploring the relationship between Jews and Ireland as found in the literary record, it reveals both the prejudices of writers who often had little or no direct contact with Jews and, later, an emerging Irish-Jewish literary sphere that shows a vibrant, vocal community at ease with its hyphenated sense of identity and culture. It also acknowledges the fraught past faced by a minority culture in Ireland and how this culture sought recognition and found accommodation on this island, and ultimately, found its place in the pantheon of Irish history, writing, and society.
Listens to the lectures
Library Seminar: Remembering Hugh O'Neill, 1616-2016
This Library Seminar, in association with the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, took place at Academy House on Thursday 1 December.
Fostered in the Pale after his father’s murder on Shane O’Neill’s orders, Hugh O’Neill, c. 1550-1616, 2nd earl of Tyrone, is portrayed alternately as charismatic, Machiavellian, a ruthless opponent, a skilled negotiator, a power seeker par excellence, an innovator. He died at Rome on 20 July 1616. On the four-hundredth anniversary of the passing of the last of the earls, our seminar assessed O’Neill ─ the man, his milieu, Ulster in the 1600s, his many battles and his ultimate capitulation.
Lunchtime Lecture Series
Book of Fenagh 500th anniversary Series
St Caillín and the Book of Fenagh, 1516-2016
Lunchtime Lecture by Dr Pádraig Ó Riain, MRIA, Professor Emeritus, UCC
Wednesday, September 14, 2016
First of two lunchtime lectures on topics related to the Book of Fenagh exhibition 'Book of Fenagh 500th anniversary'
Listen to the lecture here
The shrine of St Caillín of Fenagh and its place in Irish late medieval art
Lunchtime Lecture by Dr Paul Mullarkey, National Museum of Ireland
Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Second of two lunchtime lectures on topics related to the Book of Fenagh exhibition 'Book of Fenagh 500th anniversary'
Listen to the lecture here
Download images from the lecture here
From medieval text to mobile: folk medicine in Irish tradition
Wednesday, August 24, 2016
Dr Bairbre Ní Fhloinn's lecture on 'From medieval text to mobile: folk medicine in Irish tradition' was organised in association with the Irish Texts Society. This lecture took place at the Royal Irish Academy during Heritage Week 2016.
Bairbre Ní Fhloinn lectures and is Head of Subject in Irish Folklore, in the School of Irish, Celtic Studies and Folklore at University College Dublin. Her research interests include folk medicine, occupational belief and practice, the role of tradition in contemporary popular culture, folk belief and associated narratives, and the work and history of the UCD National Folklore Collection and its predecessors. She has published widely on a range of topics, and has been a frequent contributor to radio and television programmes over the years. She has also studied folklore abroad, in Helsinki and in Sardinia. Listen to the lecture here
Intellectual life in Ireland, 1910-1920
A series of Lunchtime Lectures exploring the works of some key scholars and organisations that helped shape ideas of Ireland and Irishness. Listen to Dr Chantal Kobel talks about Irish scholar Prof. Eleanor Knott, one of the first women to be made a member of the Royal Irish Academy, and her important contributions to scholarship in the area of Celtic Studies. Dr Regina Uí Chollatáin looks at Irish language journals between 1910-1920, examining their impact on the intellectual life and on the understanding of culture and identity. Larry White discusses the writings of Desmond Ryan (1893-1964) and their influence in shaping the story of the Easter rising. Professor Mary Daly, President Royal Irish Academy, looks at the Academy, its history and also discusses the decision to expel Eoin MacNeill and his subsequent reinstatement. Listen to the lectures here
1815, 1915: Centenaries and bicentenaries: Celticists, lexicographers and antiquarian scholars
In Spring 2015 the Library, in collaboration with the Dictionary of Irish Biography (DIB) and Foclóir na Nua-Ghaeilge (FNG), organised a series of lectures entitled ‘‘1815, 1915: Centenaries and bicentenaries: Celticists, lexicographers and antiquarian scholars.’ The series looked at the contributions made by some nineteenth-century scholars to the development of Celtic Studies, the Irish language, lexicography, archaeology and antiquarian research, textual studies and Irish history. Listen to the lectures here
Scribing for Ireland: the Ó Longáin family and the Royal Irish Academy
A series of Lunchtime Lectures organised to accompany the exhibition ‘Scribing for Ireland: the Ó Longáin family and the Royal Irish Academy'. Listen to the lecture here
From Dublin Westward: Petrie, Clonmacnoise and Aran by Professor Tom Dunne
George Petrie (1790-1866) was a noted Antiquarian, whose detailed recording of medieval ecclesiastical architecture, especially, made him an important figure in the development of what became Irish Archaeology. Listen to the lecture here
Mapping city, town and country since 1824: the Ordnance Survey in Ireland
Lecture Series organised by the Royal Irish Academy Library and the Irish Historic Towns Atlas. Listen to the series here
1014 Battle of Clontarf
A millennium has passed since the Battle of Clontarf took place on the outskirts of Dublin, Good Friday 1014. Involving on the one hand, the Vikings, both Dublin-based and from further afield, their Irish allies and supporters, and on the other, the allies of Brian Boru, leader of the Dál Cais, the story of Clontarf has long been portrayed as a battle between the Irish and the Vikings, in which the Irish claimed victory. Yet as the sun set on the battle, Brian and members of his own family and many of the Irish leaders lay dead. Listen to the lecture series here.
‘Aon amharc ar Éirinn’: Irish families and their manuscripts
From July 2013 to February 2014, the Academy Library curated an exhibition which explored the themes of Seanchas ─ ‘the memory and narrative of Irish history as preserved and written from the early medieval period to the writing of histories of Ireland in the seventeenth century’. Listen to the lecture series here.
Science Lecture Series
The 2012 Science Lecture Series was organised by the Academy Library as an integral element of an exhibition Science at the Royal Irish Academy: ‘Uniting whatever is pleasing with whatever is useful’: an exhibition: July 2012-May 2013. Listen here.
Conference: Book of Ballymote, 5-6 February 2015
The Book of Ballymote (BB), compiled between the late-fourteenth and early-fifteenth centuries, is one of the most remarkable Irish manuscripts we have. Its size and extent, the range of material it contains and its striking illumination all mark it out as an important work of late medieval learning. There are many questions that can be asked about this remarkable codex and the society in which it came into being. What was the intent of the scribes and scholars who compiled it? Why were the texts found in the BB so chosen? What sources were used in its compilation? Why was it so extensively and richly decorated? How does BB relate to other medieval manuscripts, in particular, the slightly later Great Book of Lecan? What do we know of the later history of BB? These questions and many more were explored at a conference orgainsed by the Library in February 2015. Listen to the audio recordings from the conference here.
Conference: Lebor na hUidre, 22-23 November 2012
Lebor na hUidre is the oldest manuscript we have that is written entirely in the Irish language. The library held a conference to look at this important manuscript. The conference, organised jointly by the Library of the Academy and by NUI Maynooth, took place 22-3 November and proved to be an outstanding success with over 110 delegates in attendance. Several of those who attended travelled from institutes as far afield as Switzerland, The Netherlands, Germany and Russia. The conference was opened by Academy President, Luke O’Connor Drury. Listen to the audio recordings from the conference here.