The Brehon Blog

“There is no nation of people under the sun that doth love equal and indifferent justice better than the Irish, or will rest better satisfied with the just execution thereof, although it be against themselves, so that they may have the protection and benefits of the law, when, upon just cause, they do desire it”

John Davies, Attorney General for Ireland, 1606-1619

‘Gaelicising’ the 1922 Constitution: Origins of Terminology

6 December 2022 marks the centenary of the coming into effect of the Constitution of the Irish Free State (Saorstát Eireann) Act, 1922 [1] (‘the 1922 Constitution’). This was a pivotal moment in the constitutional history of an independent Irish State. The contentious process of drafting the Saorstát Éireann Constitution has been well treated elsewhere…

Legal Advocates in Early Ireland

It is understandable that aspiring lawyers today might, at some point, find their education daunting and/or be apprehensive about entering a congested and stratified profession. Similar to other professional callings, qualifying as a lawyer is very much a marathon rather than a sprint and building up a successful practice can take some time to achieve.…

Of Swine and Samain: Aspects of Early Irish Samain Lore and Law

In this short piece marking the ancient feast of Samhain (1 November), older spelling Samain, I share some examples of early Irish Samain folklore and also outline the legal framing of Samain under the Brehon Laws. Aspects of Samain in Mythology Samain, 1 November, traditionally marked the start of Winter. It has been suggested that…

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