Breandán Ó Buachalla Memorial Lecture

The ITS/NLI Breandán Ó Buachalla Memorial Lecture is held annually.

Breandán Ó Buachalla (1936-2010) was a long-time member of the ITS Council and an authority on Gaelic poetry.



2022 Breandán Ó Buachalla Memorial Lecture

'Mixed Marriages in Medieval Ireland'

Irish Texts Society Breandán Ó Buachalla Lecture
Thursday, 1 December 2022 at 6.30 p.m. — online

Title: Dr Katharine Simms, 'Mixed Marriages in Medieval Ireland'


Speaker: Dr Katharine Simms, MRIA, FTCD, lectured in Medieval History at Trinity College Dublin to 2010. She has written From Kings to Warlords (1987), Medieval Gaelic Sources (2009) and Gaelic Ulster (2020), as well as numerous articles on Gaelic Ireland 13th to 15th centuries.

Subject of talk: From 1169 to the sixteenth century, two groups – the Gaelic Irish and the Anglo-Irish – shared the same island. Originally distinguished from each other both by law and language, by the late fifteenth century they were rapidly merging culturally, a process much assisted by intermarriage. However, opposition to this merging, and particularly to intermarriage, came from two sources, and was backed by legislation in the Anglo-Irish parliament. The Dublin government feared that Anglo-Irish aristocrats who married into the Gaelic nobility might side with their in-laws against the Crown, whereas the minor gentry and townspeople of the Pale objected to the Brehon laws on property depriving widows of their dower, and allowing the bestowal of a lord’s daughters in marriage to seal a vassalage contract, with the girl’s dowry forming the rath or fief of submission. Gaelic lords, on the other hand, had a very positive view of intermarriage, if one is to judge by the treatment of the topic in bardic poetry.



2022: Dr Katharine Simms, MRIA, FTCD ‘Mixed Marriages in Medieval Ireland’

2021: An tOllamh Máire Ní Annracháin (Prof. Emerita, UCD) ‘Polishing diamonds: How modern Irish poetry came to gleam’
2019: Cathal Goan (formerly RTÉ and Teilifís na Gaeilge TG4) ‘Collecting the Fragments: Breandán Ó Buachalla in Cape Clear (1959-2009)’
2018: Dr Bernadette Cunningham (Library, Royal Irish Academy) ‘Pilgrims and poets in fifteenth-century Gaelic Ireland’
2014: Dr Nollaig Ó Muraíle (Roinn na Gaeilge, NUI Galway) ‘The Irish genealogies — Irish history's poor relation?’
2013: Bernard O’Donoghue (Oxford) ‘Lyrics in two languages: the short Irish poem in the twentieth century’

2012: Professor Pádraig Ó Riain (UCC) ‘Forty years a-growing: the Dictionary of Irish Saints’

2011: Dr John Carey (UCC)‘The Wanderings of the Battle of Moytirra’