Fleadh Finale Ennis

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Medieval Graves

According to archaeologists, a reopened grave usually indicates grave robbery. Martine van Haperen, however, draws a different conclusion. Mediaeval people presumably reopened graves to strengthen the ties with their family ancestors: they would take objects with a strong symbolic significance. Van Haperen even acted as a detective and reconstructed the contents of such a robbed grave. She will defend her doctoral thesis on Tuesday 16 May at Leiden University. Her research was funded from the NWO programme PhDs in the Humanities.

In the early Middle Ages (450 – 800 AD), dead people were often buried with valuable items such as jewellery, weapons and earthenware pots. Martine van Haperen discovered that the people who reopened the graves certainly did not take everything. They mainly took the objects with an important symbolic significance, such as swords and shields from the male graves and jewellery from female graves. These were possibly viewed as the carriers of mythical and ancestral powers…

Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2017-05-medieval-peop…honour.html#jCp

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Ann with an E

The talented Amybeth McNulty stars in this new adoption of Avonlea (Anne of Green Gables) filmed on location in Prince Edward Island. Beautiful scenes, music, drama and a great story line makes this show irresistible!

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Medieval Mothers

The stories are below aren’t pulled from “Game of Thrones.” Promise.

In the rough-and-tumble setting of medieval England, royal mothers were expected to do far more than just ensure their children, the future monarchs, were healthy and well-educated. She had to wield all her influence and patronage to keep her son in power—and keep her husband from killing him.

Before the Norman Conquest of 1066, royal succession was not fixed. The inheritance rights of young children were often passed over to ensure that an experienced warrior was on the throne. It provided the perfect recipe for royal intrigue, and mothers with sons to defend often faced down tradition—and their own husbands—along the way. Queens were supposed to value their roles as both wives and mothers, but when forced to pick between the two, their children always came first.

Read more from Smithsonian.com.

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The Fairest Flower

Born in Montana, Lindsay Straw has always been a fan of great ballads and mellow folk-inspired music. Her passion finally started turning into something serious when she enrolled within the ranks of the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston. This is where she had the opportunity to meet fellow talented musicians and explore traditional folk music from the most fascinating European and American traditions.

Lindsay managed to stay quite busy in Boston, working with fellow students in The Ivy Leaf, a band with a passion of trad folk and Celtic melodies. Her solo work is particularly notable for her mellow vocals, stunning harmonies and intricate musicianship, bringing the songs to life with delicacy, yet energy and verve.

Her recent studio effort, The Fairest Flower of Womankind, Lindsay managed to collect stories, old folktales and ballads with a common thread: portraying strong, positive and inspirational female figures through her interpretations, and by bringing these melodies back to life for a modern audience. Armed with her guitar and bouzouki, Lindsay collaborates with a host of talented musicians, enriching her performances with stunning layers of accordion, fiddle, concertina and a lot more. While the arrangements remain strongly based on the sheer, heartfelt energy of her bare vocals and instrumental, other musicians truly add an additional dimension to her work, making for a genuine, colorful and tantalizing sound.

The production of this release is crisp, tasteful and understated, placing emphasis on the performance value and capturing Lindsay’s emotional performances, as well as the great chemistry she has managed to developed with her band members and studio collaborators for this particular project.

The Fairest Flower of Womankind is actually Lindsay’s second studio album, following her well-received debut release, My Mind From Love Being Free. It is interesting to see how Lindsay worked on these recordings differently. On her first album, the idea was simply to create a collection of great songs and beautiful melodies. On this second effort, her vision could almost be compared to creating a concept album, since all the songs have been selected and rearranged with a common thread line in mind, namely Lindsay’s connections with these songs as a woman.

5 Stars from Celtic Radio!

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