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Diary reveals mum's wartime loss

DIARY entries from 1916 by an Irish woman writing about her soldier son missing during World War One have been launched in an online database.

Digital arts students from Trinity College Dublin and University College Cork have transcribed and digitised 132 entries from the diary of Mary Martin, a widow and mother of 12 living in Monstown, south Dublin.

She started writing on New Year's Day 1916 -- against the backdrop of the Easter Rising -- shortly before finding out her son Charlie had been killed on the Salonika front in the Balkans.

Arts Minister Jimmy Deenihan launched the database at Trinity.

He said: "This online edition is a rich source for anyone interested in Irish history, military history, women's history and genealogy.

"It takes its place within a collection of other publicly available online resources that shed light on Ireland's complicated past and the development of the state."

Professor Susan Schreibman, director of M Phil in Digital Humanities at TCD added: "This project is a perfect example of a melding of interdisciplinary skills, how students with a humanities background can utilise their expertise while learning valuable state-of-the-art, hi-tech skills."

The website is www.tcd.ie