This article is about the modern Gaelic Ireland.
Although most Irish people are of 
 Farming and rural tradition
As transhumance was the norm.
 Townlands, villages, parishes and counties
The Normans replaced traditional clan land management (Brehon Law) with the feudalism over the island, the Irish county structure came into existence and was completed in 1610.
These structures are still of vital importance in the daily life of Irish communities. Apart from the religious significance of the parish, most rural postal addresses consist of house and townland names. The village and parish are key focal points around which sporting rivalries and other forms of local identity are built and most people feel a strong sense of loyalty to their native county, a loyalty which also often has its clearest expression on the sports field.
 Land ownership and land hunger
With the hillwalkers in Ireland today are more constrained than their counterparts in Britain, as it is more difficult to agree rights of way with so many small farmers involved on a given route, rather than with just one landowner.
 Holidays and festivals
Much of the Irish calendar still today reflects the old pagan customs, with later Christian traditions also having significant influence. Christmas in Ireland has several local traditions, some in no way connected with Christianity. On 26 December (St. Stephen’s Day), there is a custom of “Wrenboys“ who call door to door with an arrangement of assorted material (which changes in different localities) to represent a dead wren “caught in the furze”, as their rhyme goes.
The national holiday in the Republic is belief of ‘three divine persons in the one God’.
Brigid’s cross made from rushes on this day represents a pre-Christian solar wheel.
Other pre-Christian festivals, whose names survive as Irish month names, are Marian observances.
In the Republic, the last time a census asked people to specify their religion was 2006. The result was 86.8% Roman Catholic, 3% Church of Ireland (Anglican), 0.8% Islam, 0.6% Presbyterian, 0.3% Methodist, less than 0.05% Jewish, approximately 1.4% other religious groupings and 4.4% identified as having no religion. About 2% did not state their religious identity.
Ireland is a country where religion and religious practice have always been held in high esteem. Although the majority of Irish people are Roman Catholics, many other religions are respected and represented. There are Church of Ireland, Presbyterian, Methodist and Baptist Churches, as well as Eastern Orthodox and Salvation Army communities. Several American gospel groups are represented as well as Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons. In addition to the Christian denominations there are centres for Buddhists, Hindus, Bahais and for people of the Islamic and Jewish faiths
In Northern Ireland in 2001, the population was 40.3% Roman Catholic, 20.7% Presbyterian, 15.3% Church of Ireland (Anglican), 3.5% Methodist, 6.1% other Christian, 0.3% other religion and philosophy, and 13.9% religion not stated. Amongst the Republic’s Roman Catholics, weekly church attendance dropped from 87% in 1981 to 60% in 1998, though this remained one of the highest attendance rates in Europe.
The Leprechaun figures large in Irish folklore. A mischievous fairy type creature in emerald green clothing who when not playing tricks spend all their time busily making shoes, the Leprechaun is said to have a pot of gold hidden at the end of the rainbow, and if ever captured by a human it has the magical power to grant three wishes in exchange for release. The stories of Fionn mac Cumhaill and his followers, the Fianna, form the Fenian cycle. Legend has it he built the Giant’s Causeway as stepping-stones to Scotland, so as not to get his feet wet; he also once scooped up part of Ireland to fling it at a rival, but it missed and landed in the Irish Sea — the clump became the Isle of Man and the pebble became Rockall, the void became Lough Neagh. The Irish king Brian Boru who ended the domination of the so-called High Kingship of Ireland by the Uí Néill, is part of the historical cycle. The Irish princess Iseult is the adulterous lover of Tristan in the Arthurian romance and tragedy Tristan and Iseult.
 Literature and the arts
For a comparatively small country, Ireland has made a disproportionate contribution to world literature in all its branches, in both the Irish and English languages. The island’s most widely-known literary works are undoubtedly in English. Particularly famous examples of such works are those of vernacular poetry in Europe, with the earliest examples dating from the 6th century.
The early history of Irish visual art is generally considered to begin with early carvings found at sites such as Louis le Brocquy.
The Irish tradition of Seán Ó Riada.
Before long, groups and musicians like The Corrs.
Irish and English are the most widely spoken languages in Ireland. English is the most widely spoken language on the island overall, and Irish is spoken as a first language only by a small minority, primarily, though not exclusively, in the government-defined Gaeltacht regions. A larger minority speak Irish as a second language, with 40% of people in the Republic of Ireland and 10% of people in Northern Ireland being Irish speakers. Article 8 of the Constitution of Ireland states that Irish is the national and first official language of Ireland. English in turn is recognised as the state’s second official language. Hiberno-English, the dialect of English spoken in Ireland, has been greatly influenced by Irish.
Several other languages are spoken on the island, including Travellers. Two sign languages have also been developed on the island.
Some other languages have entered Ireland with immigrants – for example, Persian.
- Irish language
- Irish Sign Language
- Northern Ireland Sign Language
- Ulster Scots language
- Shelta language
 Food and drink
 Food in early Ireland
There are many references to food and drink in early Irish literature. venison. The fulacht fia have holes or troughs in the ground which can be filled with water. Meat can then be cooked by placing hot stones in the trough until the water boils. Many fulach fia sites have been identified across the island of Ireland, and some of them appear to have been in use up to the 17th century.
Excavations at the porridge.
 The potato in Ireland
 Food in Ireland today
In the 20th century the usual modern selection of foods common to Western cultures has been adopted in Ireland. Both US Tex-Mex), Indian, Polish and Chinese dishes.
The proliferation of 
In tandem with these developments, the last quarter of the century saw the emergence of a new Irish cuisine based on traditional ingredients handled in new ways. This cuisine is based on fresh vegetables, fish, especially Ballymaloe Cookery School have emerged to cater for the associated increased interest in cooking with traditional ingredients.
Representative Irish Foods
 Pub culture
Pub culture, as it is termed, pervades Irish society, across all cultural divides. The term refers to the Irish habit of frequenting public houses (pubs) or bars. Traditional pub culture is concerned with more than just drinking, even though Ireland has a recognized problem with over-consumption of alcohol. In 2003, Ireland had the second-highest per capita alcohol consumption in the world, just below Luxembourg at 13.5 litres (per person 15 or more years old), according to the OECD Health Data 2009 survey. Typically pubs are important meeting places, where people can gather and meet their neighbours and friends in a relaxed atmosphere. Pubs vary widely according to the clientele they serve, and the area they are in. Best known, and loved amongst tourists is the traditional pub, with its traditional Irish music (or “trad music”), tavern-like warmness, and memorabilia filling it. Often such pubs will also serve food, particularly during the day. Many more modern pubs, not necessarily traditional, still emulate these pubs, only perhaps substituting traditional music for a DJ or non-traditional live music.
Many larger pubs in cities eschew such trappings entirely, opting for loud music, and focusing more on the consumption of drinks. Such venues are popular “pre-clubbing” locations. “celtic tiger years. Clubs usually vary in terms of the type of music played, and the target audience.
A significant recent change to pub culture in the 
Sport in Ireland is popular and widespread. Throughout the country a wide variety of sports are played, the most popular being  Soccer is the most popular sport involving national teams.
In Ireland many sports, such as rugby union, Gaelic football and hurling, are organised in an all-island basis, with a single team representing Ireland in international competitions. Other sports, such as soccer, have separate organising bodies in Northern Ireland and the Great Britain team or the Ireland team.
- Community Games
- Gaelic Athletic Association
- Irish Derby Stakes
- Irish Rugby Football Union
- Northern Ireland national football team
- Republic of Ireland national football team
There are several daily newspapers in Ireland, including the newspaper of record.
The Sunday market is quite saturated with many British publications. The leading Sunday newspaper in terms of circulation is The Sunday World.
There are quite a large number of local weekly newspapers, with most counties and large towns having two or more newspapers. Curiously Dublin remains one of the few places in Ireland without a major local paper since the Dublin Daily was launched, but failed to attract enough readers to make it viable.
One major criticism of the Irish newspaper market is the strong position citation needed].
The Irish magazine market is one of the world’s most competitive, with hundreds of international magazines available in Ireland, ranging from In Dublin.
The first known radio transmission in Ireland was a call to arms made from the Century Radio, came on air in 1989.
During the 1990s and particularly the early 2000s, dozens of local radio stations have gained licences. This has resulted in a fragmentation of the radio broadcast market. This trend is most noticeable in Dublin where there are now 6 private licenced stations in operation.
While some areas of Ireland received signal from Wales earlier, TV3 began broadcasting in 1998.
British and satellite-carried international television channels have widespread audiences in Ireland. The E4, and several hundred satellite channels are widely available. Parts of Ireland can access the UK digital TV system Freeview.
The Irish Film industry has grown rapidly in recent years thanks largely to the promotion of the sector by Bord Scannán na hÉireann (The Irish Film Board) and the introduction of generous tax breaks. Some of the most successful Irish films included Intermission (2001), Man About Dog (2004), Michael Collins (1996), Angela’s Ashes (1999), My Left Foot (1989), The Crying Game (1992), In the Name of the Father (1994) and The Commitments (1991). The most successful Irish film directors are Neil Jordan and Jim Sheridan. Irish actors include Richard Harris, Peter O’ Toole, Maureen O’Hara, Michael Gambon, Colm Meaney, Gabriel Byrne, Pierce Brosnan, Liam Neeson, Daniel Day-Lewis, Cillian Murphy, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Saoirse Ronan, Michael Fassbender and Colin Farrell.
Ireland has also proved a popular location for shooting films with P.S. I Love You (2007) all being shot in Ireland.
 Cultural institutions, organisations and events
Ireland is well supplied with museums and art galleries and offers, especially during the summer months, a wide range of cultural events. These range from arts festivals to farming events. The most popular of these are the annual Dublin Saint Patrick’s Day Festival which attracts on average 500,000 people and the National Ploughing Championships with an attendance in the region of 400,000. There are also a number of Summer Schools on topics from traditional music to literature and the arts.
Major organisations responsible for funding and promoting Irish culture are:
- Arts Council of Ireland
- Arts Council of Northern Ireland
- Culture Ireland
- Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Republic of Ireland)
- Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (Northern Ireland)
- List of institutions and organisations
- Abbey Theatre
- Ambassador Theatre
- Arts Council of Ireland
- Art Projects Network
- Boardmatch Ireland
- Chester Beatty Library
- Cnuasach Bhéaloideas Éireann COBÁC
- Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann
- Conradh na Gaeilge
- Cork Opera House
- Culture Ireland
- Druid Theatre, Galway
- Dublin Writers Museum
- Gate Theatre
- Hugh Lane Municipal Gallery, Dublin
- Heritage Council
- Irish Architecture Foundation
- Irish Georgian Society
- Ireland Literature Exchange (ILE)
- Royal Hospital Kilmainham
- Irish Museums Association
- James Joyce Centre
- Macnas, performance arts company, Galway
- National Archives of Ireland
- National Concert Hall
- National Folklore Collection UCD
- National Gallery of Ireland
- National Library of Ireland
- National Museum of Ireland
- National Photographic Archive
- National Transport Museum of Ireland
- National Wax Museum
- Northern Ireland Screen
- National Trust (UK)
- Office of Public Works
- Poetry Ireland
- Royal Dublin Society (RDS)
- Royal Irish Academy
- Royal Irish Academy of Music
- Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland
- Royal Ulster Academy of Arts
- SFX City Theatre
- State Heraldic Museum
- Temple Bar Cultural Trust
- The Point Theatre
- Ulster Folk and Transport Museum, Co. Down
- University Concert Hall, Limerick
- Visual Artists Ireland/Ealaíontóiri Radharcacha Éire
- W5, Belfast
- Saint Patrick’s Day
- National Ploughing Championships
- Puck Fair, Killorglin
- Cork Jazz Festival
- Bray Jazz Festival
- Dublin Theatre Festival
- Fleadh Cheoil
- Harvest Time Blues
- Heritage Week
- Kilkenny Cat Laughs Comedy Festival
- City of Derry Jazz and Big Band Festival
- TULCA: contemporary visual art festival in Galway
- Dún Laoghaire Festival of World Cultures
- Open House Dublin, an annual architecture festival
- Open House Galway, an annual architecture festival
 See also
- List of Ireland-related topics
- Culture of Gaelic Ireland
- Culture of Northern Ireland
- Irish name
- Heritage sites (Ireland)
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