Slouching Towards Bantry

A journey is a hallucination. -- Flann O'Brien

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

The Great Hunger


This famine pot on display in the village of Inchigeelah, County Cork, is a reminder of the Great Hunger, as it is called in Ireland. The potato famine of 1845 to 1848 is estimated to have killed between 500,000 and 1,000,000 people. It also resulted in the Irish diaspora in which approximately 2,000,000 Irish were forced to immigrate abroad, including the United States and Canada. The famine was the result of a potato fungus, but was greatly exacerbated by the devastating and repressive economic policies of Ireland's then-colonial ruler Great Britain.

Famine pots such as this were used to cook a communal soup to feed the hungry. This one served the Balingeary parish of Uibh Laoire south of Inchigeelah.

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