Several foods are traditionally eaten on All Hallow's
Eve, especially colcannon and barmbrack. Bracks
(from the Irish breac, meaning "speckled") are
cakes studded with dried fruits and raisins which create
a speckled effect when sliced. Those that are made with
yeast are called "barmbracks," and those that use baking
powder and fruit soaked in tea or cider are called "tea
bracks" or "cider bracks."According to tradition, hidden
in the Halloween barmbrack were tokens to foretell the
future--a ring for the bride-to-be, a thimble for the
one who would never marry, a coin for the one who would
be wealthy, and a small piece of cloth indicating the
one who would be poor. Fortune-telling aside, barmbrack
is delicious anytime of the year, and is best when
served warm with butter.
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Win a Painted Clans Family Crest
Painted Clans are hand painted contemporary Irish crests. Each crest is researched and redesigned with a modern simplistic style keeping all the original elements that make up the crests. Each crest is then hand painted using acrylic paint making it one of a kind. 1st Prize
is a custom made double crest mounted & framed worth €170
is a custom made single crest mounted & framed worth €120Enter now
"Diaspora is one of Ireland's strengths" - Irish Abroad
Ten people around the world, both Irish
emigrants and descendants, have received the
Presidential Distinguished Service Award for 2014 at at
a ceremony at Áras an Uachtaráin. Actress Fionnula
Flanagan, Irish-American activist and publisher Niall
O’Dowd, author Thomas Kenneally and top EU civil servant
Catherine Day are among the recipients who were
presented with the award at this year's awards ceremony.
Ireland and Ontario drivers can now exchange
From this week, Irish citizens living and
working in Ontario can use their Irish driving licence
to drive and similarly people from Ontario can use their
Canadian driving licences in Ireland.
Irish Christmas Gifts
Now is the time to start
shopping for Christmas so you can enjoy a stress free
and relaxing holiday. Make Christmas special for the
people on your gift list who have either lived in
Ireland, traveled in Ireland or simply want to proudly
show their Irish heritage.
Celtic Portal Receptor and the Silence of the Hands
by Linda Davis
Where does time go while we are living
life. Seems like only a day ago, I thought that I was
ready to turn in a finished manuscript. Big sigh here.
Over a year later, I can finally smell the ink on the
In between typing, editing, reworking,
arguing with my editor, and more rounds of rewrites and
edits, there is finally a finished book in the pipeline.
The Doorway Gallery comes to London for one
week!by Denise Donnelly
will be exhibiting Christy Keeney’s latest work, as well
as those by, Cormac O’Leary, Lucy Doyle, Roisin
O’Farrell, Kate Beagan, Chris Wilson, Ken Browne, Heidi
Wickham, Padraig McCaul, and many more.
Tell Your Story
Please remember that Blogs are for writing stories, features, articles, recipes
or diaries. They should not be used for posting questions or discussions.
you have to do is login to IrishAbroad (remember it's free), go to
and click the 'Add a new Post' link in the left hand menu.
Register your Irish Family name or Surname >>
or share information if your name is already listed
This family register is where people can find and share
information about their family name or ancestors.
Some surnames added/requested this week:
Let us know if you've added a query or need your name added and
we'll list it here. Email
Citizenship by Descent
Did you know that if one of your grandparents was born in Ireland,
you may be able to obtain Irish citizenship? The Republic of Ireland
does grant citizenship to applicants who can prove their descent
from a grandparent born in Ireland.
a Research Trip To Ireland
If you plan to visit Ireland, I would encourage you to consider
making a genealogical odyssey part of your experience of this beautiful
and historical island.
Irish Genealogy Advice
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Tony Locke for your wonderful Irish folklore & mythological
We dare you not to feel a shiver down your spine
when you read some of these stories.
A Druids Ghost.
There is a passage tomb
somewhere in the west of Ireland where druids buried their dead
in stone containers, is it possible that one of their number
protects their sleep?
The Arney Woman.
Here in Ireland we have
an old saying-“A man who dies owing money or a woman who leaves
a newbornbaby will never lie quiet in the grave” Talk about
making people feel guilty when they are at their most
The House of Mystery.
In the year 1975 a
good, gentle man called John Murphy killed his entire family and
then in desperation killed himself. Was it murder-suicide or was
there some other darker force at work?
The Death Coach.
In Irish Folklore the
Death Coach is known as Cóiste Bodhar (Koe-shta-bower), meaning
death or silent coach and if you see or even hear it then either
you or a close relative will die in the very near future. The
belief is that once the coach has come to the land of the living
it cannot return empty. Once death has come to collect there is
nothing on earth you can do to prevent it.
Alexander Colville. The Devil Doctor.
Little is known regarding his actual history but his name has
become a legend in the district and is still a byword for evil
and witchcraft and he was considered to be an extremely cruel
and tyrannical landlord.
The most famous tale, one that is
still repeated today, is that he sold his soul to the devil.
Moll Anthony: The witch of the red hills.
Celtic society had a very strong impression of female power,
indeed, many Celtic deities were female and women played a
central role in Celtic society.
The Sluagh are dead sinners
that return as evil spirits that hunt for souls. They come from
the west, flying in groups like flocks of crows and attempt to
enter the dwelling of someone who is close to death in order to
steal their soul.
The Wild Hunt.
On these cold evenings it
seems an easy thing to sit by the fire with the lights out.
Shapes and shadows flicker in the darkness, and it is within
these shadows that you will find The Sluagh who forms part of
The Wild Hunt
Gaoithe sidhe. Fairy wind.
This is a
sudden gust of wind or a whirlwind that was thought to have been
caused by the faeries.
It appears that fairy
women all over Ireland find birth a difficult experience. Many
fairy children die before birth and those that do survive are
often stunted or deformed creatures.