B is for The Battle of Clontarf! AZ Blog Challenge

I just heard about the live tweeting of the Battle of Clontarf, at @1014retold. Follow it today!

At the Twitter here:

And the accompanying site is here:

The Battle of Clontarf took place in 1014 AD. 1014! Do you know how far back in time that is? It's LONGER AGO than YOUR GRANNY!


A Big Battle that had Vikings and Irish fighting against each other (though in fairness, some Vikings fought with the Irish, as allies, and vice versa. It was a complicated time, ehhh...geo-politically...speaking. Ahem.).

So Clontarf is to the Irish what Hastings is to the English. It was - apparently - the bloodiest space fantasy of them all, ever, in history, if, by "space fantasy", you mean "battle on Irish soil".


Brian Boru, Ireland's High King, led the Irish. (Not into battle, now, he was too elderly to do that, God love him.)

The King of Leinster (the province in which modern and ancient capitals Dublin and Tara are today) stood against him, with them there Vikin's. [GRAAMAR NAUGHTY-STEP: YES, THEM THERE VIKIN'S, NOT "with them (the Irish), their (possessive)". AND YES, "GRAAMAR" IS A TYPO.]

But Brian Boru ended up being killed, while his side won. Some fella on the opposite side barged into his tent, while King Brian was having a bit of a pray, or so the story goes. This Pyrrhic (can I say that?) victory kept the Vikings at arms' length from the Irish. Then the Normans arrived with the British, under Henry 2nd, more than a century later.

That's all I know about it. I'm not looking anything up to confirm, coz I don't want to ruin any surprises in store as I follow this story "on the line" from the 7th April, taking you right up to the battle itself, day by day!

The battle's being live tweeted 1,000 years after it took place:

At the Twitter here:

  Check out the wonderful site here:

I think there's gonna be some addressing of the gender bias, interesting cultural factoids, and lots of other stuff. It looks like a very cool project.

A bit about what little I know of Clontarf today:

Cluain (kind of pron: Clooo-an) means Meadow and Tarbh (kind of pron: Tarruv) means bull in Irish. 

You can just call it Clontarf though, like it's spelled.  To rhyme with Bonne Scarf. And in winter weather, you should dress up warm when out for your walk along the Clontarf promenade, with a good scarf.

There's a nearby island called North Bull Island, featuring a wildlife sanctuary and golf course. There's a bridge across to it. One word to describe this bridge would be: Rickety!

Don't rent these pedal things to get to the bridge. They don't go anywhere - rooted, as they are - to the spot. But if you're in the mood for some exercise, there are free-to-use pieces of kit along the coast at Clontarf for stretches and such!
More Clontarf facts:
Clontarf is a suburb/town that's a five or ten minute drive from the centre of Dublin (when the traffic's with you, at 3am). It's on the middle of Dublin Bay, on the coast, north of the River Liffey.


There's a byoootherful promenade and in a little bit off the coast is a castle that's also a hotel today, Clontarf Castle, celebrating many an office Christmas party, comedy and variety shows, corporate events, and such. (They also serve some tasty dessert treats if you wanna pop in for a coffee. Mmmmmm.)

Running along the length of the Clontarf coast are shops, houses, restaurants and caf├ęs. Great little area for jogging and walking and nature and central enough to buy stuff!

But enough about modern Dublin! Step back through the mists of time today, via Twitter's time traveling technologies. Hurray: