Blogs

Isle of Man: Mollag Ghennal Hits the Right Note in Peel

The long-running Mollag Ghennal has been a favourite crowd puller at a variety of venues, but this year the annual event was held in the Masonic Hall in Peel, retaining its winning formula of providing some of the best acts in both traditional and new music.

Preserving Our Celtic Heritage - The Brehon Law Academy

Under the Druidical traditions of Celtic Ireland, Gaelic law was passed down orally and was first captured in writing beginning around 450 AD as the Christian scribes began their work. This collection of oral and written laws is known as the Brehon Laws. The Brehons were the jurists of Celtic culture and it took a lifetime of study to become a true proficient. Today the Brehon Law Academy seeks to preserve the ancient Celtic Laws.

Florida Keys Celtic Festival - Rathkeltair, Albannach and Screaming Orphans Headline

North American Celtic Festivals kick off at the 4th Annual Florida Keys Celtic Festival held January 6th through 9th.   The festival will take place in Marathon situated half way between the mainland and Key West.  The 2017 Festival will include Celtic Rock and Traditional music, Irish & Scottish Dancing, Pipes and Drums and Highland Athletics.

Scotland: Historic bagpipes return home to fulfil the dying wish of a former world champion

Archie McGeachy was born in Cambeltown in 1932. He was aged 14 years when identified as someone with promising bagpipe talent and given the gift of a set of Henderson pipes. Using the pipes Archie played at the Queen's Coronation in 1953 at the age of 21 and went on to become a world champion piper. He emigrated to North America  where his interest in piping continued, playing with other talented musicians and as a member of Pipe Bands. He also formed a band in Ontario Canada called Kintyre. Sadly, Archie McGeachy died at the age of 83 years at home in Ontario in November 2015.

Cymru: TV licence fee to be withheld in devolved broadcasting campaign

News from the Celtic League:

Report here from Wales online about what appears to be the start of a direct action campaign by some members of Cymdeithas yr Iaith Gymraeg (the Welsh Language Society) to have broadcasting devolved to Wales (link):

http://www.walesonline.co.uk/…/tv-licence-fee-strike-launch…

Wales - the tradition of the Mari Lwyd

The Welsh tradition of the The Mari Lwyd was a custom performed during winter celebrations around the dates of Christmas and New Year. A horse-figure, that in the past was often made from a horses skull, was mounted upon a pole. Which was carried by a person hidden under a cloth from door to door. Accompanied by a group of singers the Mari Lwyd knocks on the door and the first verse of a traditional song is sung. This would in turn be answered in song by the person in the house.

Testament to Irish - The Language of Saints, Scholars, Kith and Kin

The following editorial appeared in Ireland's Leinster Express.  Nothing can be added to this eloquent testimonial to the Celtic tongue of Ireland.

There has never been a period in the past thousand years or more when it has not been spoken and written. Even at the worst period of anglicisation and national catastrophe, before and after the famine of 1847, it remained the language of the great mass of the people outside the Pale.

Police Scotland and Scottish Police Authority plans to embrace Gaelic language very welcome

Police Scotland and the Scottish Police Authority (SPA) have today (29th December 2016) unveiled their Gaelic Language Plans for the coming five years. It is a statutory requirement for all Scottish public bodies to have a Gaelic language plan. Under the plans Police Scotland officers will be encouraged to learn Gaelic and the service’s vehicles rebranded as part of an initiative to help promote the language within Scotland's national force. Vehicles in Police Scotland’s N Division (Highlands and Islands), including the force helicopter, already carry the “Poileas Alba” branding. 

The story of Turkish aid to the Irish during the Great Hunger

Between 1845 and 1852 the Great Famine (Irish: an Gorta Mór) or the Great Hunger was a period of mass starvation, disease, and emigration in Ireland. Following the failure of the potato crop one million people perished, and one million were forced to emigrate. It devastated communities throughout Ireland and left an indelible mark on the country. 

Isle of Man: Island Celebrates St Stephen's Day

Although other cultural pursuits may have lapsed, the annual procession of dancers, singers and musicians gathered for the traditional Hunt the Wren, travelling through the streets and lanes of some of the main towns and villages of the Island.

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