School dives back into history

Mayor John Sheahan and County Library Tommy O'Connor presenting the dictionary to Miriam Madigan with pupils Tara Buckley and Ryan Fears at Meentogues National School, Rathmore
Mayor John Sheahan and County Library Tommy O'Connor presenting the dictionary to Miriam Madigan with pupils Tara Buckley and Ryan Fears at Meentogues National School, Rathmore

Fergus Dennehy

The spirit of famed former pupil, Fr Patrick S Dineen, was alive and well in Meentogues NS last week, when staff and pupils were presented with a copy of a renowned dictionary that the former student helped to create.

Fr Dineen, who enrolled in the school on its opening day of August 1, 1871, devoted his life to the promotion of the Irish language and literature and his dictionary, 'Foclóir Gaedhilge agus Béarla', was first published in 1904 and has been widely used in hundreds of schools throughout the years since.

After his stocks and plates for the original dictionary were destroyed in the 1916 Rising, he took this opportunity to expand the dictionary; the second edition of which was then published in 1927.

Presenting a special copy of the internationally acclaimed dictionary to the school was Kerry County Librarian Tommy O'Connor and Cllr John Sheahan, Mayor of Kerry.

"We were all delighted and honoured, teachers and pupils alike, to receive a copy of the dictionary for the school library. It was a great day of celebration in the school as we remembered the great work of Fr Dineen's achievements," said Principal Miriam Madigan, talking to The Kerryman on Monday.

"We got in touch with Tommy O'Connor to ask whether it was possible to get one of the dictionaries for the school and he so kindly obliged," she continued.

"It was a wonderful day overall and it was also a great opportunity for the children to be able to examine the dictionary and get a glimpse back into history, and immersed in the Irish language" she finished.

Kerryman

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