|Youghal, Co Cork Ireland, Photo: Helen Tilston|
My morning walk to the bakery through the walled city of Youghal brings me past this shop.
It speaks softly to me as I head towards the baker for our morning cake of soda bread, scones and daily ration of bread and a treat, perhaps a meringue.
|Photo of our kitchen-table, overlooking the Blackwater River which 50 yards away feeds into the Irish sea|
The shop-keeper now knows me from repeat visits and as he hands me my change I ponder the symbol of the harp on the coins
Since 1922, the government of Ireland has used a left-facing harp, based on the harp in the library at Trinity College Dublin as its state symbol. The harp emblem is used on official state seals and documents including the Irish passport and has appeared on Irish coinage from the Middle Ages to the current Irish imprints of Euro coins. Note: The Harp faces left.
Many visitors to Ireland enjoy a glass or pint or Guinness, the famous drink of stout manufactured in Ireland since Arthur Guinness started brewing ales from 1759 at the St. James's Gate Brewery, Dublin. On 31 December 1759. It is said, he signed (up to) a 9,000 year lease at £45 per annum for the unused brewery. Ten years later, on 19 May 1769, Guinness first exported his ale: he shipped six-and-a-half barrels to Great Britain.
Guinness also use the Harp as their symbol. You will note the harp faces to the right in their logo and advertising.
Do you suppose the composer of Carrickfergus patronized establishments that served Guinness?