Authors Máire ní Mhaonaigh and Sharon Arbuthnot present on “A History of Ireland in 100 (and More) Words,” with an introduction by Professor Paul Muldoon, as part of the 2021-22 Fund for Irish Studies lecture series.

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closed captioning availableThe event includes live closed captions in English. Patrons can join the Webinar and connect directly to the captioned event through StreamText. Reference these instructions for using StreamText (PDF).

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The Fund for Irish Studies affords all Princeton students, and the community at large, a wider and deeper sense of the languages, literatures, drama, visual arts, history, politics, and economics not only of Ireland but of “Ireland in the world.” The series is produced by the Lewis Center for the Arts and the 2021-22 edition of the series is organized by Paul Muldoon and Fintan O’Toole.

The Fund for Irish Studies is generously sponsored by the Durkin Family Trust and the James J. Kerrigan, Jr. ’45 and Margaret M. Kerrigan Fund for Irish Studies.


maire smiling with chin length auburn hair, wearing dark aqua shirt

Photo courtesy Máire Ní Mhaonaigh

Máire Ní Mhaonaigh is Professor of Celtic and Medieval Studies at the University of Cambridge (United Kingdom) and a Fellow of St John’s College. She works at the interface of history and literature, her research focusing on medieval constructions of the past. She has published widely on medieval Irish literature and history and on Ireland’s place in the wider world. She has contributed chapters to the Cambridge History of Irish Literature and to the recent multi-volume Cambridge History of Ireland. Among other recent publications are a co-authored volume, Norse-Gaelic Contacts in a Viking World (with Colmán Etchingham, Jón Vidar Sigurðsson and Elizabeth Ashman Rowe, 2019), exploring the cultural and political connections between Norse and Gaelic speakers in the high Middle Ages; and A History of Ireland in 100 Words (co-written with Sharon Arbuthnot and Greg Toner, 2019) illuminating aspects of Ireland’s past through the development of words. She co-led a project on the electronic Dictionary of the Irish Language which resulted in a revised and augmented version of that resource, eDIL 2019; and she is currently directing research on the landscape history of medieval Ireland, ‘Mapping the Medieval Mind: Ireland’s Literary Landscapes in a Global Space’, illuminating medieval dinnshenchas, a literature of place (a Leverhulme Trust project 2020-2025). She chairs the board of the School of Celtic Studies of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, and serves on many other bodies, including the editorial board of Interfaces: A Journal of Medieval European Literatures and the Advisory Board of the Centre for the Study of Manuscript Cultures (Hamburg).


Photo by Trudi Tweedy

Sharon Arbuthnot specializes in medieval Irish language and literature. She has lectured and researched at a number of universities in the United Kingdom and Ireland, predominantly at Queen’s University, Belfast, and at the University of Cambridge. In the decade up to 2019, she was the main editor and researcher behind the electronic Dictionary of the Irish Language (eDIL) and she is currently involved with Faclair na Gàidhlig, the historical dictionary of Scottish Gaelic. She has published widely, particularly on early Irish glossaries and encyclopaedic texts, on scribal practice and on rare and obscure words. Recent and upcoming articles and chapters focus on vocabulary associated with the supernatural, technology, medieval medicine and the natural world, and a co-edited volume The Gaelic Finn Tradition II (with Síle Ní Mhurchu and Geraldine Parsons) will be published shortly through Four Courts Press, exploring the oral and written literature centred around the figure of Finn mac Cumaill. Lately, she has become increasingly interested in communicating to a wider audience. With Máire Ní Mhaonaigh and Gregory Toner, she is a co-author of the general-interest book A History of Ireland in 100 Words (2019), and she is the core contributor to a public-engagement project, entitled Spreading the Words, based at the University of Cambridge, outputs of which include a range of heritage activities, educational resources, and a series for the digital radio station of the Museum of Literature Ireland (Radio MoLI).

Presented By

  • Lewis Center for the Arts
  • Princeton University

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