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BellaOnline's Irish Culture Editor

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 F E A T U R E   A R C H I V E  

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St. Columcille Ireland's Other Patron Saint
St. Patrick may get all the publicity but Ireland has two home grown patron saints. Here we meet Columcille, aka Columba, who was born in Donegal.

St. Patrick Banishing Ireland's Snakes
Natural historians will tell you Ireland never has had any native snakes. So what is the basis of the folk tale of St. Patrick banishing the snakes from Ireland?

St. Patrick's Day
St. Patrick's Day is a welcome break in Lenten abstinence. This national holiday is also a Roman Catholic holy day of obligation. So before the merry making there is prayer.

Summer Starts with Bealtaine
What was originally a pre-Christian agricultural and fertility festival, Bealtaine is the Irish name for the month of May, kicking off the flurry of summer festivals and events calendar. Bealtaine celebrates creativity now especially for the over-50s in the population.

Tay so Strong the Spoon Stands to Attention
Coffee may have made inroads into Irish culture...and not just with whiskey added either. Tea remains the beverage that keeps the Irish on course.

The Great Ulster Fry Breakfast Plate
Irish food has many regional variations. Most visitors are familiar with 'the full Irish' breakfast but Northern Ireland has it's own unique variation known as the Ulster Fry. Take a tour of what appears on Northern Irish breakfast plate.

The Mary of the Gaels
Ireland has three patron saints and one is a woman, St. Brigit. So strictly speaking she is a matron saint and a motherly concern for so many aspects of life reveals that she watches a lot of backs!

The Traditional Irish Wake
The rites for honoring the dead and celebrating their life are still very much part of Irish rural culture. Undertakers may bury but the waking of the dead is still very much in the hands of the family of the departed.

Tracing Irish Roots and Shoots
With so many people emigrating from Ireland, many people seek to trace their family roots or ancestry to Ireland. Find some new online sources as well as some less conventional ways of connecting with ancestral Irish heritage.

Understanding the Celtic Calendar
The Celtic calendar, or Wheel of the Year as it is sometimes called, is also reflected in modern Irish culture. The old Cross Quarter Days still give their Irish names to the months of February, May, August and November.

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