Events

Lughnasadh Term 2018

Download Lughnasadh Term Sydney Events Calendar

Wednesdays 19, 26 September, 3, 10, 17, 24 October
Irish Conversation for Beginners

Learn to hold simple conversations in the Irish language.  Become familiar with greetings and everyday expressions in the Celtic language of Ireland.
Schedule
6.30-8.30 – weekly seminar
Venue
Sydney Mechanics’ School of Arts, 280 Pitt Street, Sydney
Cost
$185 ($125 student/unwaged)
includes light supper and booklet
Download Irish Conversation for Beginners registration form

Saturday 22 September
Adomnán of Iona seminar

Adomnán was the eighth abbot of Iona and a blood relation to Saint Columba.  He was author of the Life of Columba, a treatise on the holy places, various letters and an important legal tract.  In this seminar, we will consider Adomnán the man and religious leader, the library he assembled at Iona, and the works he wrote.  We will give particular attention to Cáin Adomnáin, also known as the Law of Innocents – the law Adomnán wrote which ostensibly gives protection to women, clerics and young boys, but which changed the face of the law in Scotland and Ireland.
Schedule
9.30-11.00 – life and literary works
11.15-12.30 – Adomnán’s Law of Innocents
Venue
Sydney Mechanics’ School of Arts, 280 Pitt Street, Sydney
Cost
$50 ($35 student/unwaged) – please register in advance
includes morning tea and booklet
Download Adomnan of Iona registration form

Saturday 22 September
Vernal Equinox celebration

Join us at a free event to celebrate the Spring equinox:  chat with like-minded folk over a light lunch and be the first to see our Samhain term event calendar.
Schedule
1.00-3.00 – lunch, music, short talk and launch of Samhain calendar
Venue
Sydney Mechanics’ School of Arts, 280 Pitt Street, Sydney
free event:  RSVP


Saturday 6 October
Lord of the Rings study day

JRR Tolkien, author of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, was a noted scholar of languages and literature.  In this study day, we will investigate the traces of historical Celtic, Norse and Anglo-Saxon language and literature in The Lord of the Rings.  We begin by discussing Tolkien’s academic work, his literary output, and what he revealed about his opinions and methods in the many letters he wrote. We will then consider the distinct cultures of the Celts, Vikings and Anglo-Saxons, and how they are reflected in the different races depicted in the novels.  We will also look at how these traits were adapted in Peter Jackson’s movie series.
Schedule
10.00-11.30 – Tolkien: scholar and author
11.45-1.00 – Hobbits and Anglo-Saxons
2.00-3.30 – Elves and Celts
3.45-5.00 – Dwarves and Vikings
Venue
Sydney Mechanics’ School of Arts, 280 Pitt Street, Sydney
Cost
$95 ($65 concession/$50 school student) – please register in advance
includes morning and afternoon teas and booklet
Download Lord of the Rings registration form

Sunday 14 October
History of the Celts in Twenty Objects Study Day
CANBERRA

The Celts are defined linguistically, and yet we are able to associate a vast collection of objects, decorative and utilitarian, with Celtic culture over more than two millennia. An attempt to define the history of the Celts through such a small sample as twenty objects is doomed to failure. Rather, this study day seeks to touch on some of the more intriguing aspects of Celtic culture though the objects that are associated with it.
In examining our twenty objects, we will also glance quickly at some additional objects that did not make the cut. We will talk about what makes an object Celtic, what is special about each object, and how it represents a particular aspect of Celtic culture. Each object will be illustrated with a range of photographs.
Schedule
11.30-1.15 – metalwork
2.15-3.45 – stone sculpture
4.15-6.00 – manuscripts and other objects
Venue
Canberra Irish Club, 6 Parkinson Street Weston
Cost
$95 ($65 student/unwaged) – please register in advance
includes lunch, afternoon tea and booklet
Canberra brochure and registration form

Saturday 20 October
Who were the Picts seminar

The Picts occupied much of the territory of north-eastern Scotland in the iron age and early medieval period.  We know little of them, because the only writings in their language that survive are fragmentary inscriptions and some names of places and people.  They have generated a great deal of speculation because of the enigmatic symbols they carved on stone boulders.  Picts also famously killed the warlike king Ecgfrith of Northumbria in an ambush.  In this seminar, we will attempt to separate speculation from fact, and understand as much as it is possible to know about the Picts.
Schedule
10.00-11.30 – historical sources for Picts
11.45-1.00 – linguistic and other evidence
Venue
Sydney Mechanics’ School of Arts, 280 Pitt Street, Sydney
Cost
$50 ($35 student/unwaged) – please register in advance
includes morning tea and booklet
Download Who were the Picts registration form

Saturday 20 October
Pictish Carved Stones seminar

The Picts’ greatest legacy is the many carved stones they left behind.  These take two particular forms:  the rough boulders with the mysterious Pictish symbols incised on them, and the intricately shaped and carved slabs adorned with crosses, hunt scenes, Celtic decoration and symbols.  In this lavishly illustrated seminar, we will look closely at the Pictish carved stones, considering the nature and style of the carving, its influences and possible meanings.
Schedule
2.00-3.30 – Pictish symbol stones
3.45-5.00 –  Pictish cross-slabs
Venue
Sydney Mechanics’ School of Arts, 280 Pitt Street, Sydney
Cost
$50 ($35 student/unwaged) – please register in advance
includes afternoon tea and booklet
Download Pictish Carved Stones registration form

The Picts day package
$95 ($65 student/unwaged)
Download The Picts registration form

Sunday 2 December
Holy Islands – Iona and Lindisfarne Study Day
CANBERRA

At the centre of Saint Columba’s federation of monasteries and churches, the island of Iona was a centre of learning.  We will spend the first half of this study day with this beautiful island and its intriguing history.  In particular, we will discuss the complicated history of the church in Saint Columba’s time, and investigate the many early medieval and later artefacts associated with Iona.
The tidal island of Lindisfarne was settled by monks from Iona at the invitation of the king of Northumbria.  It came to be of central importance for Christianity in the north of England. We will explore the background of Lindisfarne’s establishment and its role in the development of Christianity in England. Lindisfarne is the place of origin for many important early medieval manuscripts including the Lindisfarne Gospels, and we will look closely at manuscripts and other artefacts from Lindisfarne and the surrounding areas.
Schedule
11.30-1.00 – Saint Columba and Iona
2.00-3.00 – Iona artefacts
3.15-4.15 – Lindisfarne: history and place
4.30-6.00 – Lindisfarne artefacts
Venue
Canberra Irish Club, 6 Parkinson Street Weston
Cost
$95 ($65 student/unwaged) – please register in advance
includes lunch, afternoon tea and booklet
Canberra brochure and registration form

StCiaranssite (2)

Save the dates!

Friday 15 to Sunday 17 February 2019
Scottish Gaelic Retreat
CALLALA BEACH

Spend a weekend immersed in Scottish Gaelic at beautiful Callala Beach on the NSW South Coast.  We will have exclusive use of a holiday house and numbers will be limited to a maximum of eight.  Formal Gaelic language classes will be interspersed with gentle walks on the beach, cooking traditional Scottish dishes and enjoying the outdoors – all in Gaelic.  No prior knowledge of Gaelic required.  More details will be available soon.

July 2019
Early Medieval Scotland and Ireland study tour

Join Dr Pamela O’Neill on a tour of early medieval sites, museum and library collections interspersed with informative talks.  Join the whole tour, or choose just a week in either Scotland or Ireland.  More details will be available soon.

 

On very rare occasions, we may have to cancel an event due to circumstances beyond our control.  On such occasions, we will notify all registered participants and arrange a full refund.  If you are unable to attend an event for which you have registered, we will arrange a full refund if you cancel with at least 48 hours’ notice.  If you cancel with less than 48 hours’ notice, we will endeavour to arrange a reduced registration fee for a substitute event.

Really want to come but can’t afford it?
Contact us about payment plans or scholarships.