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A night of Scottish culture at Celtic Tales

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THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 18 will be a momentous day in Scottish history as the nation goes to the polls to decide whether or not to become an independent state.

‘Ireland took the bullet for Europe when the banks collapsed’

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“Ireland took the bullet for the EU” over the collapse of the continent’s economic and banking institutions, and now “it’s pay back time”, as younger generations should not have to face a future of “austerity in perpetuity”.

The swearing, the singing, and the scheming

For years now the people of this country have been taking our medicine, swallowing the bitter pill. Sure weren’t we all part of it. We all bought into the dream. The holidays, the cars, the second houses, the au pairs, the gadgets, etc, etc. The flamboyancy of it all. When the banks told us to take out a home improvement loan or a car loan to buy the latest model with all the bells and whistles, or to extend our mortgage and put a few bob into savings, or when they kept increasing our credit card limits, we went along with it. We’re as guilty as Drumm et al, or so they’d have us believe.

Julian Gough’s new novella on Anglo-type greed to be published in two weeks

As the revelations from the Anglo tapes cause public revulsion at the financial culture of greed, megalomania, and callous disregard for the welfare of the State and its citizens, a new novella, which satirises such behaviour, is about to be published.

The Knights of Malta in Galway

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The first unit of the Order of Malta in Galway began in 1937 when Dr Conor O’Malley was asked by the Marquis McSweeney, the then chancellor of the Irish Association, to recruit members to form an ambulance corps aimed initially at Connacht only.

Through the glass darkly

In Act One of Shakespeare’s Merry Wives of Windsor, a play, so legend has it, Queen Elizabeth personally commissioned because she so enjoyed the character of Sir John Falstaff in Henry IV, 1& 2, we meet Master Abraham Slender who has come to court the young and lovely Mistress Anne Page. As he hesitates at the door, he laments, “I had rather than 40 shillings I had my book of Songs and Sonnets here.” The joke here, for Shakespeare’s audience, concerns the name of the book Slender mentions – Songs and Sonnets.

Treaty is a straitjacket that will bring misery, says O Cuiv

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“The EU Fiscal Compact Treaty is a straitjacket that would lead to misery in our country and throughout the EU. This is not the way to solve our problems. It is against the whole spirit of the EU.”

Back to the future with Michael D and Giovanni Trapattoni?

“We must seek to build together an active, inclusive citizenship; based on participation, equality, respect for all, and the flowering of creativity in all its forms. A confident people is our hope, a people at ease with itself, a people that grasps the deep meaning of the proverb; Ní neart go cur le chéile’ - our strength lies in our common weal - our social solidarity.”

A dangerous romance

When I was about midway through my second decade and starting to take an interest in poetry, I was one day leafing through an anthology of English poetry when my eye caught a poem called ‘The Lover Showeth How He is Forsaken of such as He Sometime Enjoyed’.

The Story of the Bells of St Nicholas

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The Collegiate Church of St Nicholas, dedicated to St Nicholas of Myra, patron saint of children (better known as ‘Santa Claus’) and of mariners, is the largest medieval parish church in Ireland in continuous use as a place of worship. Though there is some disagreement about when it was built, it was finished by 1320. The building was extended by the Lynch and ffrench families when the 14 tribes were at the peak of their power during the 16th century. Christopher Columbus prayed there during a visit to Galway in 1477, and the building suffered the iconoclasm of Cromwell’s troops, who used the church as a stable after the siege of Galway in 1652. Today it occupies the centre of the city, renowned for its annual Christmas carol service, which is attended by the mayor and members of the city council, and members of the corporation, all in robes, preceded by the symbols of the city; its silver sword and mace.

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