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Irish Kings & High Kings by F. J. Byrne. Examines the political landscape of early Ireland, the mythology of Tara, and the growth of the high-kingship. Numerous maps and genealogical tables.
Wars of the Irish Kings by David W. McCullough. Covers a thousand years of struggle, from the age of myth through the reign of Queen Elizabeth I.
The British Monarchy and Ireland: 1800 to the Present by James Loughlin. Looks at the personalities of individual monarchs, royal ritual and spectacle, and royal allegiance.
Crown and Shamrock: Love and Hate Between Ireland and the British Monarchy by Mary Kenny. Reveals Edward VII's benign attitudes to Catholics, George V's worries about civil war, and how Ireland was altered by the Abdication Crisis.
Hidden Annals: A Thousand Years of the Kingdom of Connaught 366-1385 by Vincent Byrne. Chronicles 50 O'Conor kings of Connaught, including the last two High Kings: Turlough Mor and his son, Roderick.
Crown and Community in Medieval County Dublin: The Royal Manors by Ãine Foley. A study of the royal manors of Crumlin, Esker, Saggart and Newcastle Lyons between 1170 and 1400. They represented the largest direct stake that the king of England maintained in Ireland.
Royal Inauguration in Gaelic Ireland c.1100-1600: A Cultural Landscape Study by Elizabeth FitzPatrick. Considers the places on the Irish landscape where open-air Gaelic royal inauguration assemblies were held.
Irish Royal Charters: Texts and Contexts by Marie Therese Flanagan. Latin charters issued by 12th century Irish kings, with commentary.
Essays on the Early Irish King Tales edited by Dan M. Wiley. Presents an introduction to the early Irish king-tales together with 10 original essays.
Princes, Prelates and Poets in Medieval Ireland: Essays in Honour of Katharine Simms edited by Seán Duffy. Themes include the changing function of kingship and lordship in Gaelic and Anglo-Norman Ireland and the organization of the medieval Irish church.
Erin's Blood Royal: The Gaelic Noble Dynasties of Ireland by Peter Beresford Ellis. Traces the early history of Ireland through the lives of its noble families. A fascinating read for anyone interested in Ireland and Celtic royalty.
The Counsels of Cormac: An Ancient Irish Guide to Leadership translated by Michael Cleary. Advice from the third century Irish high king Cormac Mac Airt on how to be a great leader and live a fulfilling life.
Wild Irish Roses: Tales of Brigits, Kathleens, and Warrior Queens by Trina Robbins. A look at strong Irish women throughout history, from the ancient warrior queens Maeve, Marrigan, Macha, and Badbh to the labor-movement maven Mother Jones.
The Great Queens: Irish Goddesses From the Morrigan to Cathleen Ni Houlihan by Rosalind Clark. Although men dominated early Irish society, women dominated the supernatural. Christian monks turned pagan deities into saints or mortal queens like Medb of Connacht.
The Oxford Illustrated History of Ireland by R. F. Foster. Includes 200 illustrations.
The Twilight Lords: Elizabeth I and the First Irish Holocaust by Richard Berleth.
Abject Loyalty by James H. Murphy is. Nationalism and monarchy in Ireland during the reign of Queen Victoria.
The Encyclopedia of Ireland: An A-Z Guide to Its People, Places, History, and Culture edited by Ciaran Brady. Out of print, but available at Alibris.
The Ancient Celts edited by Barry Cunliffe. Includes 200 illustrations. The Celts were at once alike and diverse, which led to the formation of many different Celtic cultures from the Black Sea to Ireland. This heavily illustrated, well-written book tells their story well, from the beginnings of Celtic culture in the distant Indo-European past to the height of Celtic power in the third century A.D. (Review © Amazon.com)
Ancient Ireland by Laurence Flanagan is about life in Ireland before the arrival of the Celts.
In Search of Ancient Ireland by Carmel McCaffrey and Leo Eaton. Traces the history, archaeology, and legends of ancient Ireland from 9000 B.C. to 1167 A.D. Includes the rise and death of Brian Boru. Companion book to the PBS/Irish television series.
Pagan Celtic Ireland by Barry Raftery. History and archaeology of the Irish Iron Age.
Celtic Myths (The Legendary Past) by Miranda Jane Green. Explores the mythology and beliefs of the pagan Celts between about 600 B.C. and A.D. 400.
Kingdoms of the Celts: A History and a Guide by John King. Traces the rise and fall of the great Celtic dynasties and their famous kings and queens. Out of print, but available from Alibris.
Ancient Ireland: From Prehistory to the Middle Ages photographed by Jacqueline O'Brien and Peter Harbison. Over 300 photos of ancient sites. From Alibris.
Brian Boru: King of Ireland by Roger Chatterton Newman. The youngest son of an obscure king, Brian Boru became one of the few high kings with real authority. This book explores his life and offers a new theory on his relationship with Gormfhlaith, queen mother of Dublin. 78 illustrations.
Brian Boru and the Battle of Clontarf by Seán Duffy. This book suggests that Brian emerged from obscurity to attain the high-kingship of Ireland because of his exploitation of the Viking presence. Clontarf was deemed a triumph, despite Brian's death, because he averted a major new Viking offensive in Ireland.
1014: Brian Boru and the Battle for Ireland by Morgan Llywelyn. Brian Boru, High King of Ireland is often dismissed as a mythical figure, but the author, a well-known historical novelist, believes he actually lived.
Brian Boru: Ireland's Greatest King? by Maire Ni Mhaonaigh. Biography that examines the legendary reputation Brian acquired in the thousand following his death.
From Kings to Warlords: The Changing Political Structure of Gaelic Ireland in the Later Middle Ages by Katharine Simms. The Norman invasion of Ireland (1169) did not result in a complete conquest. Native Irish chieftains who retained control of their territories recovered power in the later Middle Ages.
Prophecy of Berchan: Irish and Scottish High-Kings of the Early Middle Ages by Benjamin T. Hudson. The "Prophecy of Berchan" is a medieval verse history of the kings of Ireland and Scotland between the ninth and 11th centuries. This book provides both a translation of the text and a commentary.
Irish Royal Charters: Texts and Contexts by Marie Therese Flanagan. Very few documentary sources survive from 12th century Ireland. This book is the first modern edition and commentary on the Latin charters issued by Irish kings.
Early Medieval Ireland 400-1200 by Daibhi O Croinin. Covers Irish history from the coming of Christianity to the Norman settlement. Major themes include the beginnings of Irish feudalism, and the impact of Viking and Norman invaders. Out of print, but available from Alibris.
Ireland in the Age of the Tudors, 1447-1603 by Steven G. Ellis is about English expansion and the end of Gaelic rule. From Alibris.
Isolde, Queen of the Western Isle by Rosalind Miles. First novel in a trilogy based on the legend of Tristan and Isolde. Set in Cornwall and Ireland. Followed by the sequels The Maid of the White Hands and The Lady of the Sea.
The Swan Maiden by Jules Watson. Historical fantasy novel retells the Celtic story of Deirdre, who was blessed by beauty and cursed to bring ruin to the kingdom of Ulster and its ruler.
Red Hugh: Prince of Donegal by Robert Reilly. Novel about the adventures of a 16th century Irish prince. For children ages 9-12.
These DVDs are formatted for North American audiences.
In Search of Ancient Ireland. This 2000 TV series traces the history and legends of ancient Ireland from 2000 B.C. to 1167 A.D.