Written Answers - National Anthem

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 732 No. 1

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  64.  Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan  Information on Maureen O'Sullivan  Zoom on Maureen O'Sullivan   asked the Minister for Finance  Information on Michael Noonan  Zoom on Michael Noonan   further to a parliamentary question the sources that were consulted by him or by representatives of the Government in reaching the determination that the translation Sinne Fianna Fáil in the current version of the National Anthem, as published on the Department of the Taoiseach’s website, is the appropriate and correct interpretation of the words soldiers are we, as composed by Peadar Kearney, in view of the appropriation of a translation for explicitly party political purposes; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10806/11]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan  Zoom on Michael Noonan  I understand that the Irish translation which became generally known and used was written perhaps as early as 1917 by Liam Ó Rinn, who later became Chief Translator to the Oireachtas. He translated the first line of the chorus, “Soldiers are we, whose lives are pledged to Ireland” as “Sinne fianna fáil, atá fá gheall ag Éireinn”’. With regard to the history, development and translation of the Anthem, I would direct the Deputy’s attention to an article which appeared in “History Ireland” in Spring 1996 entitled “The Story of the National Anthem”. The article was written by Ruth Sherry Professor of English in the University of Trondheim Norway. The full article is readily available on the internet using the following link:

http://www.historyireland.com/volumes/volume4/issue1/features/?id=113150


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