Many of those listed will astound you. And sure why not; for such a small little country, Ireland has always punched above its weight.
Its main contribution to the human race has been its people and the need for them to have to leave its shores. With the exception of the famine, the majority have left since the great mistake of the inauguration of the Irish Republic at the turn of the 20th century for, not only is it too small to sustain itself, it is wholly incompetent to rule itself, as it was predicted, and has proved itself to be and, especially, given its craven behaviour surrounding the banking collapse of 2008.
But what has always intrigued me is that, whilst so many achieved fame and greatness abroad, particularly in Britain, rarely - if ever - did the begrudgers of the 'auld country' celebrate or acknowledge it or them. It was as if the horrors of those who stayed behind and took over the kip were beside themselves with jealousy. Either that or it is inherent in the situation of the psyche they found themselves in - like the Russians after the revolution - that the management wouldn't allow them that grace or favour. Even the laughable lunacy of the long-fella, De Valera, stupidly signing the book of condolences for the death of the shit 'Herr Hitler' whose behaviour caused the death of tens of millions of people, displayed an example of little-minded devils that the Irish Republic management showed itself to be. Yeh! verily I say it was, since 1916, the 'Devil-era' in both name and control. In fact, let me take this opportunity to celebrate and express a gratitude to the huge number of Irishmen who left the place and joined the army, the British Army, as they had done in WW1 - to fight Hitler and bring a degree of respect back to Ireland's belittled reputation. It deserved much less for the attitude they had otherwise shown to their neighbour island.
I believe it would be of enormous benefit to the students of Ireland to be made aware of the many who wear or wore its mantle with great fame and yet remain unheralded either in Britain but particularly in Ireland. Such an expansion of their education might lift the effect of their ignorance informing their oft erroneous opinions which have cause such mayhem. It may well be that the governments of these two main islands, through the media, played down such information for fear it might bring the threat of violence on those who were or are still living but could be prey to the vile misguided paramilitaries as you'll discover with some of the Irish characters in this blog. Whatever about the people, the governments have a way of 'accommodating' the truth.
They say there are some 40 million Americans who claim Irish heritage and, undoubtedly, that's true but there are as many again in other countries throughout the world, especially Britain, Australia and Canada. But, as you will see from the articles in this blog, they also brought their spirit, genius, wit and repartee to many other places like France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Japan, China, Russia, South America in fact, all over the globe.
The Irish are known as people who stand up for their rights and the rights of others. This has been sadly wanting ever since the banking crisis of 2008 but, nonetheless, there have been signs of rebellion and to those who have taken to the streets in protest, such as those against evictions and water charges, we say you are now following a proud tradition of "We, the people" and never has such a requirement been sorely needed or demanded by the world.
So, be inspired and be proud of the many who wore the mantle of 'Irish' and who have been ignored or disparaged by their own begrudging kind who, as the hapless and the helpless, were left behind to be ruled by the hopeless.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------And for those who have a strong stomach, check out our video site
As an example of what I am saying and why I have produced this whole site, I take the liberty to repeat this wonderful article by Tom Peterkin, published on 2nd July 2007 in The Telegraph, headed "Irish Inspiration For Bond Character M" - it has the force of a steamroller over the limited minds of the ignorant.
An exhibition commemorating the extraordinary career of an Irish spymaster, who was a founder of the British Secret Service, has reawakened age-old Anglo-Irish tensions.
The first attempt to remember William Melville, the inspiration for the 'M' character in the James Bond films and books, in the land of his birth has led to adverse comment from ardent Irish republicans.
For decades Melville's key role as head of Scotland Yard's Special Branch has been overlooked, particularly in the village of Sneem, Co Kerry, where he was born in 1850.
In a part of Ireland known for its republican sympathies, many locals would have been reluctant to acknowledge a man who worked for the British state to foil the Fenian bombing plots of the 1880s. But in a sign that modern Ireland is prepared to recognise all the traditions that make up its past, his life has been outlined at Kerry County Museum in a major exhibition that tells of his friendship with Harry Houdini, his involvement in the Jack the Ripper case and a story that resonates today as Britain faces a new terrorism threat.
"Here is an Irish Catholic, who was proud of his Irish identity, defending Britain from terrorist threats that included Irish terrorism," said Helen O'Carroll, the museum curator.
"As a Kerryman born and bred, Melville is part of our story and to fit him in we must acknowledge that Irish identity encompassed a broader spectrum in the past as indeed we are beginning to recognise that it does in the present."
Robert Beasley, a local Sinn Fein councillor, was less enthusiastic, however.
"I don't think local people would want to commemorate anything to do with the British Secret Service, whether it is in the past or today. I don't see any reason to have him honoured," Cllr Beasley said.
While many of his contemporaries became involved in Ireland's violent struggle against the British, Melville came to London where he joined the Metropolitan Police.
There he joined the Special Irish Branch set up to combat the Fenian dynamite campaign of the 1880s, which targeted Westminster, the Tower of London and Scotland Yard.
He played an important role in preventing the Jubilee Plot, an Irish attempt to ruin Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee celebrations. Around that time, he also unsuccessfully pursued an American Francis Tumblety, who was one of the main suspects in the Jack the Ripper case.
Two disarmed bomb casings thought to have been part of an anarchist bomb plot uncovered by Melville have been sent to Ireland from Walsall for the exhibition.
Melville established a rapport with Tsar Nicholas II of Russia, who he guided around the criminal haunts of London.Houdini was another acquaintance, who taught him how to pick locks. It has also been suggested that Melville recruited the great escapologist for espionage work.
In 1903, Melville was head hunted by the War Office's new Directorate of Military Operations. Later his work was dominated by the threat of Germany. He was part of the Secret Service Bureau, the forerunner of MI5 and MI6 set up in 1909. Three years later he discovered a network of German agents.
The SSB left the network in place, intercepting correspondence until 1914 when they rounded them up, an action that crippled German secret operations in Britain.
The James Bond connection comes through Sidney Reilly, aka Sigmund Rosenblum, an agent recruited by Melville in the 1890s. Reilly, an international man of mystery, is said to be one of the spies that Ian Fleming based his Bond character on. As Reilly's boss, Melville was known as 'M'.
"Up to two years ago I had never heard of William Melville and I'm pretty confident I'm not alone in that," said Ms O'Carroll. "There are two reasons for this.
In the first place, there is the fact that he spent all of his adult career in the service of the 'ancient oppressor', Britain. The second reason is because of his work in secret service. After all, the best spies are the ones we don't know about."