Rosscarbery Annual School builds on historical connections between Ireland and Germany

Posted on: 8th September, 2014

Category: News

Contributor: West Cork People

Ireland and Germany have strong cultural and ecclesiastical links going back to the Middle Ages. St. Mary’s Abbey in Rosscarbery is the only known daughter-house of the famous ‘Schottenklöster’, Irish Benedictine monasteries founded in the 11th century in Bavaria and Austria. The monks from Rosscarbery went from St James’ in Regensburg, which was to become the mother-house of some twelve monasteries, as far away as Kiev and Vienna.

Building on the strength of these historical and cultural connections, the Rosscarbery Annual School will outline the context and the significance of such links, while, at the same time, seeking to explore and develop opportunities for future cultural, social and business relationships between West Cork, Ireland and Germany. The School takes place in the Celtic Ross Hotel, Rosscarbery from September 26 to 28 under the auspices of Rosscarbery and District Historical Society

Professor Helmut Flachenecker University of Würzburg will outline the role and the influence of the ‘Schottenklöster’ and the Irish Benedictines in Bavaria and Austria from the 11th to the 15th Century with specific reference to the monks from St. Mary’s in Rosscarbery.

The School, which is in three modules, will be attended by 30 participants from Würzburg, which will provide a wonderful opportunity for exchange of information and ideas with the Irish audience.

The historical module will be chaired by the well known historian and lecturer Dr. Dagmar Ó Riain-Raedel on Saturday, September 27, as well as Professor Flachenecker and includes presentations by William Murray on Drombeg, Dr Diarmuid Scully on the south-west of Ireland on medieval world maps and a presentation by James Ware UCC on West Cork and the First World War.

There is an open forum session and it is hoped that incidents from the First World War, which occurred along our coast by as yet undocumented and local involvement with German interests, may come to light.

The Saturday afternoon session deals with Energy in modern day Ireland and Germany and should be of particular interest to all farmers and coastal communities.  Topics include ‘seaweed and grass to make transport fuel’ by Professor Jerry Murphy UCC and ‘the ocean can power our future’ by Professor Tony Lewis UCC. Dr. Jochen Bard from the Fraunhofer IWES will make a keynote address on ‘wind energy for sustainability, the German experience and its relevance to West Cork’. This session will be chaired by Professor Gerry Wrixon who will also speak on photovoltaic solar energy (PV), Professor Wrixon says “PV is of special interest to this part of Ireland and has a particular relevance to farmers…”

The Sunday morning module is being curated by Avril Allshire of Caherbeg Free Range Pork Ltd and will feature German / Irish food links and ‘a feast for the senses; a brief culinary tour of West Cork’ by Stephen Sage and Sally Barnes .

Further information is available on


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