Denis Foynes – Would you like to impress your friends with interesting facts from around the globe? Live and Invest Overseas News can help.
This is the beginning of a series in which each week you can read ten facts about one of our destination. This week we are starting with the Emerald Isle.
Here are ten facts about Ireland
1.The Irish shaped the world’s most famous images. The Oscar statue, the White House, the famous portrait of Che Guervara, and the Titanic were all designed by natives of the Emerald Isle. However, the Irish don’t brag too much about the “Unsinkable Ship”.
2. St. Patrick’s Day is a public holiday in only three places in the world. Ireland, the Canadian provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador and….. the Caribbean Island of Montserrat. Why is really anyone’s guess.
3. The “Guinness Book of World Records” was actually created by Guinness brewery employees. It is not just some sort of sponsorship deal. The idea was sparked during an argument among workers regarding which game bird was the fastest in Europe.
4. Dracula is Irish. Bram Stoker, the author of the famous book, was born and raised in Dublin. Although the story was set in Romania, the character of Dracula was based on an old Irish legend named Abhartach. Abhartach basically was a vampire king, and in Irish folklore Dracula actually means something closer to “bad blood.”
5. It was Ireland that led the world towards smoke free bars and restaurants. They were the first country in the world to pass the smoking ban in March 2004. Opponents speculated that the smoke-free workplaces law would increase the amount of drinking and smoking in the home, but recent studies showed this was not the case.
6. Ireland may not be known as the scientific hub of the world; however, they did answer the question of “Why is the sky blue?” Irish scientist John Tyndal discovered that a clear cloudless day-time sky is blue because molecules in the air scatter blue light from the sun more than they scatter red light.
7. Ireland invented the duty free airport. Shannon airport became the first duty free airport in 1947.
8. An old birthday tradition in Ireland is to hold the birthday youngster upside down and thud the head slightly on the floor. The bumps are meant to represent the age of the child and are supposed to bring them good luck, after his traumatic birthday presumably.
9. Although the first divorce ever granted in Ireland was in 1997, up until the 1920’s, couples in Ireland could legally be married on St. Brigid’s Day (Feb. 1) in Teltown, County Meath, by walking towards each other. They could then divorce on St. Brigid’s day the following year by walking away from each other at the exact same spot. What a legal loophole.
10. There is an old famous proverb in Ireland, “A man in love is incomplete until he has married, then he is finished.”