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 On This Day 24th July in Irish History

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PostSubject: On This Day 24th July in Irish History   Thu Jul 24, 2008 9:13 am

1261- The battle of Callann took place near Kilgarvan in Co. Kerry. Finian MacCarthy led a force of McCarthys and O'Sullivans against William de Dene and his Norman/Irish followers. Totally against the run of play, we won, and the McCarthy/O'Sullivan alliance gained temporary control of West Cork and Kerry. Richard de la Rochelle succeeded De Dene as justiciar of Ireland. Poor old Finian over reached himself and was killed near Kinsale in September.

1927- The Menin Gate Memorial was unveiled in the town of Ypres, Belgium. It commemorates 54,896 English, Scottish, Welsh, Irish, Australian and Indian soldiers who died in the Ypres salient from August 1914 to August 1917 who have no known grave. Since 2nd July 1928 Ypres town firemen have closed the street running through the gate every evening at 8 pm and blown Last Post at the memorial.

Births

1878- Edward John Moreton Drax Plunkett, 18th Baron of Dunsany was born in London. He lived much of his life in the family castle in Co. Meath where he wrote poetry, novels and short stories.

1895- Robert Graves was born. He was a poet and novelist who served in the Royal Welsh Fusiliers in WW1 along with Siegfried Sassoon. Graves’ grandfather was Bishop of Limerick and his father Alfred was a noted writer and collector of Irish folk music.

The Next War

You young friskies who today
Jump and fight in Father’s hay
With bows and arrows and wooden spears,
Playing at Royal Welch Fusiliers,
Happy though these hours you spend,
Have they warned you how games end?
Boys, from the first time you prod
And thrust with spears of curtain-rod,
From the first time you tear and slash
Your long-bows from the garden ash,
Or fit your shaft with a blue jay feather,
Binding the split tops together,
From that same hour by fate you’re bound
As champions of this stony ground,
Loyal and true in everything,
To serve your Army and your King,
Prepared to starve and sweat and die
Under some fierce foreign sky,
If only to keep safe those joys
That belong to British boys,
To keep young Prussians from the soft
Scented hay of father’s loft,
And stop young Slavs from cutting bows
And bendy spears from Welsh hedgerows.
Another War soon gets begun,
A dirtier, a more glorious one;
Then, boys, you’ll have to play, all in;
It’s the cruellest team will win.
So hold your nose against the stink
And never stop too long to think.
Wars don’t change except in name;
The next one must go just the same,
And new foul tricks unguessed before
Will win and justify this War.
Kaisers and Czars will strut the stage
Once more with pomp and greed and rage;
Courtly ministers will stop
At home and fight to the last drop;
By the million men will die
In some new horrible agony;
And children here will thrust and poke,
Shoot and die, and laugh at the joke,
With bows and arrows and wooden spears,
Playing at Royal Welch Fusiliers.

Robert Graves
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