Death of James Joyce in Zurich – Archbishop Spence at Today in Irish History

January 13: TODAY in Irish History:

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Joyce Image in For the Love of Being Irish

Snippets of Irish History by Conor Cunneen IrishmanSpeaks 

Conor is a Chicago based Motivational Humorous Business Speaker, Author and History buff.

WATCH: A Short History of Ireland





 1860: Archbishop Robert William Spence

Robert William Spence who went on to become third Archbishop of Adelaide, Australia succeeding two previous Irish born bishops, is born in Cork.

Archbishop Spence Adelaide
Cork born Robert Spence

Spence’s predecessors were Archbishop John O’Reilly from Kilkenny who succeeded the first Bishop of Adelaide, Dublin born Christopher Augustine Reynolds.


READ: Bio of Archbishop Spence at Australian Dictionary of Biography




1921: First Ulster Special Constable Killed

Special Constable Robert Compston is the first member of the Ulster Special Constabulary (founded November 1920 to support RIC against IRA attacks) to be killed in the line of duty near Crosmaglen. Although the RIC (Royal Irish Constabulary) did not morph into the Royal Ulster Constabulary until June 1922, Compston is recognized by RUC as the first fatality.




1941: Death of Dublin’s James Joyce in Zurich, Switzerland.

Joyce is recognized by many English literati as the finest novelist the English language has produced.

Joyce Image in For the Love of Being Irish
James Joyce in For the Love of Being Irish

Above illustration of Joyce (by Mark Anderson) appears in For the Love of Being Irish where  author (and editor of Today in Irish History) Conor Cunneen provides a limerick and some perspective on on Joyce:

“He’s Ireland’s finest voice
Is Dublin’s most famous James Joyce
Humor, Pain and Profanity
In his work, you can guarantee
James Joyce, the  critics’ Rolls Royce

Two of Joyce’s books regularly feature in Best Novels of the 20th century. Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and ‘everyone’s ’favorite – Ulysses. Here’s the truth. If you have read Ulysses you are either studying or teaching English literature or you are extraordinary patient as you grapple with his stream of consciousness form of writing. The trick is to listen to a reading of the book by professional actors – preferably Irish. Then, you can appreciate the pacing, fun, warmth, the wonderful witty dialogue and (ahem) pretty filthy mind of the Jesuit educated writer.
One of the joys of visiting Dublin is to take a guided tour through many of the locations cited by Joyce who was born in Ireland’s capital in 1882, lived much of his life in Italy and died in Zurich, where he is buried, in 1941. ”



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Want to learn more about Ireland? See these images and more in the acclaimed For the Love of Being Irish

Irish gift ideas. Best selling Irish booksRonnie Drew and Luke Kelly - Musical Irish Gifts to the worldJoyce Image in For the Love of Being IrishMichael Collins: Image from For the Love of Being Irish


This history is written by Irish author, business keynote speaker and award winning humorist IrishmanSpeaks – Conor Cunneen. If you spot any inaccuracies or wish to make a comment, please don’t hesitate to contact us via the comment button.

Visit Conor’s YouTube channel IrishmanSpeaks to Laugh and Learn.

Tags: Best Irish Gift, Creative Irish Gift, Unique Irish Gifts, Irish Books, Irish Authors, Today in Irish History TODAY IN IRISH HISTORY (published by IrishmanSpeaks)


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