The Official Name of Ireland (Origin)
The Constitution states the name of the country is Éire, or in the
English language, Ireland. Normally practice the name Éire is
restricted to texts Ireland is used in all English-language texts, and
of course equivalent translations are used in other languages.
The Republic of Ireland Act of 1948 provides a description of the
State as: "the Republic of Ireland", but general usage of the state as
Ireland is prevalent in the English language.
The root of the name Éire is uncertain but it is thought to be a name
of considerable antiquity. It first appears as Ierne in Greek writings
which may have a base dating as early as the 5th century BC. The name
appears as Iouernia in Ptolemy's map (c AD 150) and has also been
found translated into Latin as Iuverna.
The Latin form, Hibernia, appears in the works of Caesar, who may have
confused it with the Latin word hibernus (wintry). Ériu was an Old
Irish form of Éire, and was seen in the earliest of Irish literature.
Ireland is derived from the Irish word Éire adding the Germanic word
| Gaelic is the Celtic branch of the Indo-European
family of languages. About one person in five in Ireland can speak
Irish today, but only one in 20 use it daily. In Scotland
approximately 80,000 people speak Gaelic. |
Saint Patrick (about 389-461) is the patron saint of
Ireland. Patrick was born in Britain.|
Ireland, together with Britain, joined
the European Economic Community in 1973.|
population of the island as a whole is just under 6 million(2006),
4.20 million live in the Irish Republic and 1.7 million
live in Northern Ireland. |
a parliamentary democracy. The National Parliament
(Oireachtas) consists of the President and two Houses:
Dáil Éireann (the House of Representatives) and Seanad
Éireann (the Senate) Northern Ireland
has a parliamentary monarchy and an electoral democracy.
The voting age is 18 in both parts of Ireland.