The stories told on these pages are from  a collection of folklore compiled by schoolchildren in Ireland in the 1930s. 
The children recorded (over&nbsp740,000 handwritten pages) of this material from their parents, grandparents and neighbours.

These are their stories in their own words.

Irish Prisioners – a funny story

SCHOOL: Clochar Nuala, Dún na nGall | ADDRESS: Donegal, Co. Donegal

Proud Irish Heritage - 1916 Rising
Dublin GPO damage after 1916 Rising

After the 1916 Rebellion the Irish prisoners on being taken to internment camps in England refused to converse in any other language but their native tongue. Any questions asked by the English soldiers guarding them were answered by the Irish soldiers in Gaeilge.

One night, a few hours after the prisoners bedtime, an English soldier entered the camp and finding one of the beds empty asked the question “Who owns this bed”.

An Irish prisoner standing at the entrance to the camp replied “is liomsa”.

Indignant at this impertinence (as he thought), the English soldier went up to the prisoner in a rage and said Lumps o’ay (Lumps of hay) indeed. Even if it is lumps o’ay you had better come up here and get into it jolly quick.

(“is liomsa” is Gaeilge (Irish language) which in English means “it is mine” )


The Schools’ Collection, Volume 1034, Page 52” by Dúchas © National Folklore Collection, UCD is licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0.

Proud Irish Heritage Certificates