Ten Questions About Irish Culture

If we look carefully, we can see the effects of history in the culture all around us. Can you think of any historical reasons for the following things that you might notice in Ireland today?

Read through the questions and then click the link below to see some suggested answers. 


1. If you look at a food menu in an Irish pub or restaurant, you’ll see lots of dishes with potatoes… Historically, why have potatoes been so important in the Irish diet?

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2. Ireland is a green country with beautiful countryside… But why are there so few trees in Ireland?

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3. Irish are not generally strict about time and punctuality… What historical reasons might there be for the Irish concept of time being so elastic?

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4. Ireland has many famous writers… Why does Ireland have so many famous writers yet, in comparison, so few famous
painters and artists?

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5. Ireland often comes in the top ten of the happiest nations in the world in international surveys… Why do you think the Irish are generally so happy?

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6. Ireland is geographically very close to England and the two countries have a very connected and shared history… But why do the Irish seem so different to the English? (Or do they?)

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7. Around the world, there are over one hundred million people who say they’re descended from Irish emigrants. Famous people include presidents John F. Kennedy and Barrack Obama; the boxer Muhammed Ali and Che Guevara… Why have so many Irish people left Ireland and emigrated around the world?

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8. When you first arrive in Ireland, be careful crossing the road… Why do the Irish drive on the left side of the road (different from most of Europe)?

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9. If you travel from Dublin to Belfast, you will notice that the road signs change from kilometres to miles and that the money changes from euro (€) to pounds (£). Northern Ireland is still part of Britain, yet the south of Ireland is an independent republic… Why is the island of Ireland divided in two like this?

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10. The native language of Ireland is Irish… But why do most Irish people speak English instead of Irish? 

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To read the answers click here!


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