Tag Archives: Saint Patrick’s Day

THE IRISH WILD GEESE

irish flagThough purists reserve the label Wild Geese strictly for those Irish Jacobin troops who left Ireland after the Williamite War ended in 1691, romantic military tradition has tended to consider almost all Irish expatriates who served in overseas armies from the 1580s into the 1800s and beyond as part of “the flight of the Wild Geese.”

The popular image of these wandering Irish warriors is of tragic exiles nobly fighting for the cause of freedom “in every land but their own” to twist the most famous poem about the Wild Geese. Their opponents in various conflicts would dispute that claim, naturally, but since this is Saint Patrick’s Day we’ll have none of that in this blog post. 

EIGHTY YEARS WAR – In 1585 an English Catholic named William Stanley raised an Irish Regiment to serve on the Continent with Queen Elizabeth’s forces. Stanley selected his 1,400 troops from the most volatile, hard-bitten Irish rebels whose battle prowess he admired even though he had fought against them only a few years earlier. The Irish Regiment under Stanley helped take Doesborg in August of 1586 and Deventer in October of that year. Continue reading

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“GOD SAVE IRELAND” FOR ST PATRICK’S DAY

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! In lieu of Give Them A Shoutout Before They’re Dead, Balladeer’s Blog will call this “That Song Many People Associate With That Clive Revill Episode Of Columbo.” 

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A MODERN DAEDALUS (1887): ANCIENT SCI FI FOR ST PATRICK’S DAY

A Modern DaedalusA MODERN DAEDALUS (1887) – By Tom Greer. No, the title’s not referring to James Joyce’s character Stephen Dedalus (sic) but this tale IS about Ireland. The main character is a young man named Jack O’Halloran, a recent college graduate who returns to his native Ireland.

Jack has dreamed about flying since he was a child and now he uses his genius to create a winged apparatus that can be worn by a single person to take to the skies. Our modern Daedalus flies around at speeds of up to 100 miles per hour with his new invention. Jack is thrilled but complications arise when he shares the news with his father.

Old Man O’Halloran wants to use his son’s winged apparatus to wage aerial warfare against the hated British and thereby win independence for Ireland. Our protagonist doesn’t want his invention used for such a blood-soaked purpose and in the ensuing argument his father throws him out of the house. Continue reading

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