Despite being a small country, Irish culture has created an impact throughout the entire world. Emigration has played a huge part in Irish history and has contributed greatly to this impact. The greatest example of this is the national holiday of St. Patricks Day which falls on March 17th. Many cities across the world celebrate by hosting parades. Ireland also has a proud history of storytelling through spoken word, poetry, music and novels. Famous Irish storytellers include Oscar Wilde, WB Yeats and James Joyce.
Ireland is a parliamentary, democratic republic with a multi-party system. There are three branches of power: executive, legislative and judicial. Executive power is exercised by the Irish government which is led by the Taoiseach (Ireland’s Prime Minister). The legislative branch of power is controlled by the Oireachtas which is responsible for making laws. The judicial branch is led by the Chief Justice and is responsible for implementing laws created by the Oireachtas.
Christianity is the main religion in Ireland with most people identifying as Roman Catholics. However, since the 1990s a growing number of people are not identifying with any religion. In 2016, almost 10% declared as having ‘No Religion’. This figure has doubled from 2011.
Although the official state language is Irish, English is the most commonly spoken language with 94% of the population calling it their mother tongue. Irish is spoken as a day to day language in specific regions known as Gaeltacht regions. Here you can find a map of Ireland highlighting these regions.