THE ROYAL IRISH ACADEMY IS IRELAND'S LEADING BODY OF EXPERTS IN THE SCIENCES AND HUMANITIES

A history of Ireland in 10 words

The words we use say something fundamental about us and how we think. They give others an indication of what we know, what is important to us, and how we perceive our environment. The words that have come down to us from Gaelic Ireland are the product of a rich and varied textual culture which included legal tracts, covering everything from murder to bee-keeping, and tales about kings, queens, heroes and warriors. Discover how the Irish ate, drank, dressed, loved and lied through the centuries in this fascinating exhibition based on A History of Ireland in 100 Words by Sharon Arbuthnot, Máire Ní Mhaonaigh and Gregory Toner, illustrated by Joe McLaren and published by the Royal Irish Academy (2019).

The history of Ireland told in this exhibition represents one-tenth of the words foregrounded in the book and a very small proportion of those preserved in eDIL. We hope visitors will be enticed to dip into the book and the dictionary, and so experience other words that express further strands of Ireland’s rich and varied story.