Trading in butter?

You just never really know when you are going to find something unexpected. I've known for a long time that early medieval Ireland had a heavily cattle based economy, really a dairy based economy. Most of this product would be used for local consumption,  as a primary source of both calories and protein. During my... Continue Reading →

Ireland’s First Easter Vigil

This is one of my favorite posts from the Heavenfield archive: From Muirchu's Life of Patrick: "And on the very night that St Patrick was celebrating the Passover, they were partaking of the worship of their great pagan festival. Now there was a custom among the pagans -- made clear to all by edict --... Continue Reading →

The Death of King Diarmait

I've been browsing through the Fragmentary Annals of Ireland for you know what, plague, and I came across an interesting entry. 665 Kl. The death by plague of the son of Áed Sláine, i.e. Blathmac [...], i.e. in Calatruim. Diarmait died in the same place, standing, stretched against a cross, watching the Laigin army approaching... Continue Reading →

Cattle Plagues in the Annals of Ulster, 699-708

From the archives a couple years ago: I've been looking at the Irish annals for references to plagues and I came across a couple of references to cattle plagues. Now these plagues are probably not the same disease causing human deaths in the annals. There is a species barrier for most diseases, but not all.... Continue Reading →

The Mortality of Children, Ireland 683-685

683 The beginning of the children's plague in the month of October (AT, AU, AI), which lasted for three years in Ireland. (FAI); A plague was in Ireland (AC) 684: The plague of youths, in which all the chieftains and nearly all the young Irish noblemen perished. (FAI); The mortality of little ones (AT) / children... Continue Reading →

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