10 STRANGE and SHOCKING facts about Ireland

There are many strange and shocking facts about Ireland that may surprise you; here are our top 10.

Top 10 strange and shocking facts about Ireland

The Emerald Isle is a majestic land steeped in mystery, and there are many facts about Ireland that you may not know and ones that may shock you. During our research, we discovered many facts about Ireland, some funny, some shocking, and some downright weird!

In this article, we will list what in our opinion are the top 10 strange and shocking facts about Ireland.

10. A townland in Galway has the longest place name in Ireland

10 strange and shocking facts about Ireland include the longest place name in Ireland
Credit: @reehes / Instagram

The longest place name in Ireland is ‘Muckanaghederdauhaulia’, or ‘Muiceanach idir Dha Sahaile’ in Irish. Muckanaghederdauhaulia (try saying that five times fast!) is a small townland that is located in County Galway, and it translates to “ridge, shaped like a pig’s back, between two expanses of briny water”.

9. Ireland has the longest-running television programme in the world

10 strange and shocking facts about Ireland include the longest-running TV programme in the world

The Late Late Show is not only the longest-running television programme in Ireland, but also in the world. The Late Late Show program has been running since 1961, which was the year that television was first introduced in Ireland; it has since had a number of different presenters over the years.

The late Gay Byrne presented the show for 37 years, Frank Hall hosted it for a brief period in 1964, Pat Kenny hosted it for 10 years, and the current host Ryan Tubridy has been at the helm since 2009.

8. 10 million pints of Guinness are produced in Dublin every day

10 strange and shocking facts about Ireland include the amount of Guinness produced each day

Yes, believe it or not, approximately 10 million pints of Guinness are actually produced in Dublin every single day.

7. Nigerians consume more Guinness than the Irish

10 strange and shocking facts about Ireland include the fact that Nigerians consume more Guinness than the Irish

While Guinness is Ireland’s most famous export, the black stuff is actually consumed more in Nigeria than in Ireland. See where this ranks on this list of the funniest facts about Ireland.

6. English is not the first language of Ireland

10 strange and shocking facts about Ireland include the first language of Ireland

While it’s true that the vast majority of people speak English and would claim it as their first language, Irish is officially recognized as the first language of Ireland. The use of the Irish language can be seen on all official government documentation as well as public transport, signage, and public buildings.

5. Saint Valentine is interred in Dublin

10 strange and shocking facts about Ireland include the fact that St. Valentine is buried here

The Whitefriar Street Church in Dublin is the surprising resting place of Saint Valentine, as his ashes were presented to the church as a gift by Pope Gregory XVI in 1835. The ashes are displayed along with relics of Saint Valentine in a shrine, which many engaged couples visit on or around Valentine’s Day in the hopes that Saint Valentine will bless their union.

4: The Irish sport of hurling is over 3,000 years old

10 strange and shocking facts about Ireland include the age of hurling

The game of hurling, which is believed to be the world’s fastest game played on grass, was created in Ireland over 3,000 years ago and was initially played by fierce warriors who wished to hone their sword-wielding skills.

3. The term “boycott” comes from Ireland

Charles Cunningham Boycott inspired the term 'boycott'

The term “boycott” comes from Ireland from the town of Ballinrobe, County Mayo, which started and led a campaign of isolation against a land agent called Charles Cunningham Boycott. In 1880, all local shops in the town refused to serve or deal with Charles Cunningham Boycott, and as the newspapers reported on these events, the verb “boycott” was born.

2. Ireland’s patron saint isn’t Irish

St. Patrick is not actually Irish

Contrary to popular belief, the official patron saint of Ireland, Saint Patrick, isn’t even from Ireland. Saint Patrick was born in Wales around 386 AD. When he was 16, he was captured by Irish pirates and brought to Ireland, where he spent six years as a slave before he managed to return to Wales.

Apparently after having a vision, Saint Patrick then became a priest and went on to return as a missionary to Ireland, where he became a bishop.

1. Halloween originated in Ireland

Halloween as its roots in ancient Ireland

Halloween, as it’s celebrated today, originated in Ireland from the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. During Samhain, people would light bonfires and wear scary outfits in order to ward off evil spirits.

Samhain is an old Gaelic word, which, when translated, means ‘darker half’. The Samhain festival officially marked the end of the harvest season and the start of winter. It was also believed that the souls of the dead were thought to return to the homes of their families on this night.

Are there any other strange and shocking facts about Ireland that you believe deserve to be on this list?

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